Talking Partners is a family of structured oral language programmes designed to improve the way children communicate across the curriculum. There is a programme for primary schools (talkingpartners@primary) and one for secondary schools (talkingpartners@secondary), both of which are targeted, time-limited (10 weeks) interventions delivered to small groups of learners.
They provide opportunities to practise and rehearse target language through a range of focused activities, and draw particular attention to the links between oracy and literacy.
Talkingpartners@primary involves trained partners (typically experienced TAs) working with groups of three pupils for twenty minutes three times a week, and adaptations of this model can be made for EYFS where a 'little and often' approach would be more appropriate. Talkingpartners@secondary consists of an hourly taught group session (maximum efficacy is achieved with a ratio of 1:3) and 1 or 2 follow up sessions, each week, to consolidate the taught skills (this can be on an individual basis).
Training in either programme takes the form of a 2-day course which can be attended by TAs, learning mentors and teachers. Participants receive a training pack, which contains full descriptions of activities, frameworks for teaching and assessment materials to support delivery and measure impact.
Talking Partners has not been included in any systematic reviews into the effectiveness of educational programmes.
- Early Years
- Key Stage 1
- Key Stage 2
- Speech, language and communication needs
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