The Impact of Talk Boost
Talk Boost intervention from I CAN is a successful evidence-based programme developed to help narrow the gap between 4-7 year olds with language delay and their peers. Talk Boost was developed and evaluated using evidence collected by professionals in two comprehensive trials (and ongoing evaluations.)
Talk Boost is a ten week intervention programme, delivered three times a week by a trained teaching assistant and in trials was shown to increase the language level of a child by between nine and eighteen months. In course feedback, teaching staff have described the training as “fantastic, practical, useful (and) it will help our children.”
Recent feedback using data collected since May 2014 is compelling and encouraging, showing that after ten weeks of intervention; “the number of children reaching expected levels and no longer needing help to talk in sentences almost tripled,” whilst “more than two thirds of children no longer need help understanding language, as they have reached expected levels.” These statements reveal that the impact of Talk Boost, demonstrated during the trials, is being successfully replicated in everyday practice.
Talk Boost’s impact has been consistently positive for a number of reasons, one of which is the emphasis placed on the children’s participation; with a variety of activities that develop their experience of shared communication, where they can also celebrate their achievements. “Nearly three quarters of children who received Talk Boost felt that they were good communicators after the intervention.”
Another benefit of Talk Boost is the Progression Tool which forms part of the training resources. The tool is used by teachers to both identify children with delayed language and track their progress, providing invaluable evidence of the intervention’s outcomes.
Many schools use their Pupil Premium to fund Talk Boost. With pressure on schools to produce evidence-based results in all aspects of teaching and learning, Talk Boost provides a great opportunity for teacher’s to boost their children’s academic outcomes and self-confidence. One teacher said when describing Talk Boost in a post-course evaluation “it should be taught in all schools,” a fantastic endorsement of the programme’s positive impact and continued influence.