Caiden Whelan

A parent story: The impact Talk Boost KS1 made to my son

Since launching in March 2012, I CAN’s Talk Boost KS1 intervention has reached almost 40,000 children in 2,200 schools, boosting their communication skills and helping them to catch up with their peers. One of those children is Mandy’s six year old son, Caiden.

Caiden, who is in year 1, recently finished a 10 week Talk Boost KS1 intervention. When describing his communication skills before the intervention Caiden’s mum Mandy said, “Before starting Talk Boost KS1 Caiden’s speech was a lot younger, a lot more babyish than the other kids in his class. He couldn’t say some words clearly, for example he couldn’t say ‘grandad’ he used to say ‘grangag’. He wasn’t very confident speaking and would become very shy when he was talking to people. In the playground he used to get into lots of fights, not because he’s naughty but I think it was to do with communication, he was struggling when talking to people and when other people were talking to him.”

But after he completed the intervention, Mandy noticed that Caiden’s confidence had grown when speaking to others.

“Since taking part in the Talk Boost KS1 sessions he’s more confident in his speech and his behaviour has improved a lot. I was running a stall at the church bazaar one Saturday and there was a toy that you had to guess the name of, before he never would’ve have gone up to strangers but he was walking around asking everyone to guess the name! He was really confident going up to them all. He’s speaking a lot more clearly and confidently, he’s coming on really well. He says some really funny things now and he likes to get a lot more involved in things.”

When asked what Caiden’s favourite part about Talk Boost KS1 was, Mandy said, “The Talk Boost activity book he got was really good, he completed it with one of the staff at the school – I wanted to do it, it looked so much fun!

Caiden really enjoyed the activity where they had to tell the group a story about something they’d done, and he told them about our trip to Margate and got a certificate for it – he was really proud of that!”

Talk Boost KS1 is a 10 week targeted and evidence based intervention for children aged 4-7 with delayed speech, language and communication. The intervention is delivered by a teaching assistant who has received I CAN training and understands the importance of the different components of language and how they are introduced and practised throughout the 10 weeks.

Find out more about Talk Boost KS1 here or contact the team at talkboost@ican.org.uk

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