Talking about your child’s speech, language and communication at parents’ evenings

The leaves are starting to change colour, conkers are starting to fall. It’s getting cold and dark in the evenings and your child’s uniform is no longer looking like it did in the shop. As we get to the half way point of the autumn term we want to find out how our children are getting on at school or nursery. Parents’ evening or parent consultations are a good opportunity for you to talk with your child’s teacher(s). This is a chance for you to ask about how your child’s getting on with talking and making friends as we know that these are important for learning.

Here are some of the questions you can ask, no matter whether your child has just started at nursery or school:

  • Have they settled in well and are happy?
  • Can my child follow the routine of the setting?
  • Do they listen to and follow instructions?
  • Can they ask for help when they need it?
  • Are they able to play with other children in small groups?
  • Are they making friends?
  • Can they listen and join in at group times?
  • Are they interested in and excited by stories and books?
  • Are they learning and using new words?
  • Can you understand what they are saying?
  • Do they need any help with listening or talking?
  • What sort of strategies help them to talk, learn, play and make friends?
  • What can I do at home to help them?

You can also have a look at the Progress Checker at www.talkingpoint.org.uk/progresschecker  for some more questions to ask, especially if you are worried about how your child is doing. You will also find out more about children’s talking and listening skills at different ages on the Talking Point website, as well as tips and ideas for what you can do at home to help.

If your child’s teacher or keyworker is worried about your child’s talking, you can work together to find out what difficulties they are having and how you can help your child at home and at school. They might find I CAN’s ages and stages posters for 0-18 years useful. Early years staff might find also find the Progress Check pad helpful.

If you have any questions or concerns you can always call 020 7843 2544 to arrange for a call from one of I CAN’s friendly speech and language therapists. We can talk about how children develop at different ages and how to help your child. Find out more at www.ican.org.uk/help