Eldon Primary School

Aspiration, Determination, Success

Colourful Semantics

Colourful Semantics

Colourful semantics is an approach created by Alison Bryan. It is aimed at helping children to develop their grammar but it is routed in the meaning of words (semantics).


What is Colourful Semantics?

Colourful semantics reassembles sentences by cutting them up into their thematic roles and then colour codes them.

The approach has 4 key colour coded stages. There are further stages for adverbs, adjectives, conjunctions and negatives.

WHO? – Orange
WHAT DOING? – Yellow
WHAT? – Blue
WHERE? – Red



The approach helps children to organise their sentences into key levels. The approach is used in stages and helps children develop language and vocabulary in addition to grammatical structure. It can be used to help children who are starting to develop language and have limited vocabulary to confident talkers who struggle to organise the grammatical content of their sentences.


Who can use Colourful Semantics?

The approach can be used with children with a range of Speech, Language and Communication Needs including:

Specific Language Impairment
Developmental Delay or Disorder
Autistic Spectrum Condition
Down Syndrome
Literacy difficulties


© Copyright of Integrated Treatment Services

How to use colourful semantics

Still image for this video