Posted on: Monday, February 9, 2015 - 21:04

The Communication Trust The latest TCT newsletter includes information about our Impact Report and the No Pens Day Wednesday evaluation and date for 2015 event.

View the January 2015 TCT Newsletter

Posted on: Thursday, January 29, 2015 - 12:18

A selection of related articles, news, resources and information from across the web this month.

Preschool attendance boosts language in disadvantaged children

Published by Penny Roy and Shula Chiat, 14 January 2015,

All children with early language problems are at increased risk of struggling at school, and having reduced employment opportunities and life chances, but the risk of early language problems is disproportionately high for children from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds.

Language and Socioeconomic Disadvantage: From Research to Practice - Briefing Paper

Authors Roy, P., Chiat, S. & Dodd, B. (2014). Language and Socioeconomic Disadvantage: From Research to Practice. London, UK: City University London.

Abstract: Children from low socioeconomic (SES) backgrounds are at disproportionate risk of language delay. Previous research has suggested that basic language skills affected in language impairment may not be affected by SES. These skills may therefore help to distinguish children with language impairment from those with poor language due to limitations of their language environment. The distinction is important since children with language impairment require different types of intervention from disadvantaged children whose inherent capacity for language is intact. In this Briefing Paper, we report findings from our research, funded by the Nuffield Foundation, which aimed to tease apart external and internal factors involved in language delay in socioeconomically disadvantaged preschoolers, using measures known to be more or less socially biased.

Sleep and Language Survey

Survey by Nebras Baraka, fourth year speech and language therapy student at City University London

Hello, my name is Nebras Baraka, I am a fourth year speech and language therapy student at City University London. Currently I am working on my dissertation on 'the relationship between sleep and Language’ and would greatly appreciate if you can help me with my research by filling out a questionnaire. We would like to see if there is a relationship between specific language impairment and sleep. We will do this by comparing questionnaires filled out by parents of children with language difficulties and parents of children that have normal development.

Posted on: Monday, January 19, 2015 - 12:27

NAPLIC Conference and AGM, 16 May 2015: SEND reforms and SLCN: Good practice to support children and families

Conference programme and seminar choices have now been published on our website for NAPLIC's 2015 Conference and AGM.

The conference will take place at the University of Warwick and online booking is now open with early-bird rates for members until 16th March.

Delegates wishing to book at membership rates should be members at the date of the conference - 16 May 2015 - and not members at the time they make their booking the conference. If you have any questions about the conference please email

This conference will be of interest to Teachers and SENCOs, Teaching Assistants, Speech and Language Therapists, Advisory Teachers for SLCN, Educational Psychologists and LA Advisors

Book online now

Posted on: Sunday, January 11, 2015 - 12:23

The Communication Trust The latest TCT newsletter includes information about the Read on. Get on. campaign and the opportunity to be involved in the testing phase of the Secondary Progression Tools.

View the December 2014 TCT Newsletter

Posted on: Wednesday, December 17, 2014 - 10:50

The Oracy Assessment Project at the University of Cambridge focuses on Developing a toolkit for assessing young people’s oracy (spoken language skills).

Materials produced during the Oracy Assessment Project are now available as free downloads online via the Faculty of Education website

The toolkit consists of a set of initial tasks, a set of curriculum-embedded, assessment-for-learning (AfL) tasks, for use throughout the year and a set of end of year tasks, together with a system for assessing performance on these tasks and giving feedback to the children. We have aimed to make the use of the toolkit as flexible as possible, so that teachers can use any or all of the AfL tasks at any points in the school year, with any number of children, depending on the circumstances within a school.

Find out more about the Oracy Assessment Toolkit

Posted on: Thursday, November 20, 2014 - 13:54

NAPLIC is currently working in conjunction with Better Communication CIC and Afasic to provide a system wide approach which enables a school to develop provision for speech, language and communication needs (SLCN) and wider SEN at a whole school and individual learner level, in line with the new SEND Code of Practice 0-25 and OFSTED requirements.

We are recruiting schools now for the pilot phase starting in January 2015.

To register your interest in being a pilot school, or if you are a professional working with a school and would like to find out more, please complete the form on the Better Communication website.

The website has recently been updated with new information, FAQs and registration details to provide more information on the project.

Pilot schools will be asked to make a contribution of £750 (inclusive of VAT) to be part of the scheme which represents a 50% subsidy for pilot schools.  The development materials and online tools will be provided free to pilot schools for the 4 term duration of the pilot scheme.  These will allow schools to analyse the speech, language and communication needs of the school population, map existing provision (which will provide a framework for the published offer that schools are required to make under the Code of Practice for SEN (2014)), plan how the school can meet the standards at universal, targeted and specialist levels and provide an evaluation framework.  Schools completing the Scheme to the required threshold will received an accreditation.

The 50% contribution is to cover consultant time and expenses for two visits, one in term 1 and one in term 4, and an agreed amount of email and telephone support during the pilot scheme. 

Find out more and register your interest at

Posted on: Sunday, October 19, 2014 - 22:07

Twenty years ago, I applied to the Nuffield Foundation to study children with specific language impairment (SLI) attending language units across England. This longitudinal project, known as the Manchester Language Study, was successfully funded with an official start date of 1995. The first two researchers to join the project were Nicola Botting and Alison Crutchley.

For 20 years we have been able to count on the help, support and dedication of language unit teachers, school teachers, assistants, speech and language therapists and many professionals across the country, and especially the families and the children (now young adults) themselves.

We want to thank you all and invite you to celebrate with us at a special reception in November 2014. If you have been involved in any way with the Manchester Language Study or know someone who has, or are a friend of the study, do please get in touch so that we can send you details of the celebrations.

We would love to have you join us - please contact Jackie O’Brien, my assistant, at:

Thank you.

Posted on: Friday, October 3, 2014 - 14:21

The Communication Trust The latest TCT newsletter includes information about the Read on. Get on. campaign and the opportunity to be involved in the testing phase of the Secondary Progression Tools.

View the September 2014 TCT Newsletter

Posted on: Tuesday, July 8, 2014 - 11:38

No Pens Wednesday, 15 October 2014The Communication Trust, an organisation which we are a member of, is running its annual No Pens Day Wednesday campaign on Wednesday 15th October.

No Pens Day Wednesday encourages schools to put down their pens and pick up their language by running a day where learning is focused around speaking and listening activities!

This year as well as providing new materials for mainstream primary and secondary schools, for the first time the event will be providing resources specifically for early years settings and special schools!

The Trust develop free resources that give you everything you need to run the day in your school or setting. To access the resources simply sign up on their website here and you’ll get immediate access to all the resources currently available and to new resources as and when they become available!

To find out more about No Pens Day Wednesday:

Posted on: Monday, June 30, 2014 - 11:30

A selection of related articles, news, resources and information from across the web this month.

Language Impairment From 4 to 12 Years: Prediction and Etiology

Published by Marianna E. Hayiou-Thomas, Philip S. Dale, and Robert Plomin, June 2014, Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research

The authors of this article examined the etiology of developmental language impairment (LI) at 4 and 12 years of age, as well as the relationship between the 2.

Dyslexia: A language learning impairment

Published by Margaret J. Snowling, June 2014, Journal of the British Academy

Abstract: Without the ability to read fluently with comprehension there is a downward spiral of poor educational achievement and career prospects. Dyslexia is therefore a major problem for society and a key question is whether it is possible to intervene early to ameliorate its impact. Studies following the development of children at family-risk of dyslexia reveal that it is associated with language delays and speech difficulties in the pre-school years before reading instruction begins. Literacy outcomes for children depend not only on the risk factors that predispose to reading difficulties but also on protective factors which mitigate the risk. Together current evidence places dyslexia on a continuum with other language learning impairments.

Children's use of mime shows how language develops

Article by Meredith Jones Russell, Published 11 June 2014,

News article looking at research led by the University of Warwick has examined how four-year-olds, 12-year-olds and adults used gestures to communicate in the absence of speech.

Long-Term Study Suggests Ways To Help Children Learn Language And Develop Cognitive Skills

Research by University of Chicago, published 17 June 2014,

Examining factors such as how much children gesture at an early age may make it possible to identify and intervene with very young children at risk for delays in speech and cognitive development, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Chicago.

Supporting children with speech, language and communication needs: an overview of the results of the better communication research programme

Research by Julie Dockrell, Geoff Lindsay, Sue Roulstone and James Law, published 24 June 2014,