Recent research shows that over 50% of children who start school have lower speaking and listening skills than age expectation.This can lead to poor behaviour, a reduction in their learning potential and difficulty in socialising. There are many reasons for this decline in oral and aural skills, but it is fundamentally important that we try to reverse this downward trend if we want our children to live happy and fulfilling lives.
“There are thousands of children and young people effectively disabled by speech, language and communication impairments. There’s a progression between this 'hidden disability', exclusion from school and young adults ending up in trouble, and it starts early. We need to spot and offer provision for these impairments as early as possible.” L. Lascalles Afasic
The Talking Families training programme has been developed by Education Works' Clare Reed for Parental Involvement Workers, Children Centre practitioners, Nursery Nurses and Child Minders. It provides these professionals with a range of practical skills, strategies and resources to deliver workshops or drop in sessions for parents. These sessions can be delivered flexibly over a period of time, but specifically to develop speaking and listening skills with targeted groups of parents and children, encouraging and supporting them to communicate more effectively as a family.
Talking Families has been developed for parents who need to know how to communicate more effectively with their children. It helps them to realise how important talking with their children and listening to them is, and it gives lots of suggestions of ways of doing just this.
Practitioners who work with parents can deliver Talking Families, e.g. Parental Involvement Workers, Nursery Teachers, Nursery Nurses, Child Minders, Children Centre workers, Parent Liaison Officers.
Talking Families can be dleivered in a flexible way depending on the needs of the parent group and the educational setting. Practitioners will be equipped with many practical ideas and resources to support parents over a range of at least 6 sessions/workshops.
Talking Families impact can be evaluated by simply seeing and hearing the families talking more together. Having follow up sessions where parents can share their experiences and successes would also be beneficial.
Benefits to schools, parents and children include:
- increased parental participation in educational setting through involvement with workshops to create resources increased support from parents with children's work
- improved pupil attendance
- improved pupil behaviour
- development of children's self-esteem and self-confidence
- increased desire for children to contribute more in educational setting
- improved achievement in speaking and listening
- improved achievement in other curriculum areas
- Children can listen more actively and talk for a range of purpose
Clare Reed delivers the 3 day training course for professionals working with parents. This can be organised within a geographical area or locality for several practitioners from neighbouring educational settings.
The course involves reflective learning, practical exercises to develop knowledge, understanding and skilled techniques in speaking, listening and communicating. The course is delivered through paired and group activities with an emphasis on practical skills and work that could be delivered straight back to parents. Training resource packs are provided including PowerPoint tutorials, DVDs and booklets.
Contact Education Works to discuss your requirements.