Parents help design new course to help children learn to talk

On 24 November and 5 December 2016, our Communication and Language Team were joined by local parents and carers to help design new language courses for children aged 12-18 months and 18-24 months.

Everyone shared their thoughts on where and when the courses should take place, how long they should run for and what they should cover in order to best support children’s learning.

Senior Speech and Language Therapist, Isobel Wratislaw, says:

“We know that the most successful services are created hand-in-hand with parents and carers, which is why we wanted to work together from the very start to design the courses they’ve asked for.

“Research shows us that very early language development is vital to a child’s future success, so we were all focused on developing a course to support parents in building their children’s listening, attention skills and vocabulary, setting them up for the rest of their lives.”

Parents’ requests for the additional free courses, and the work to design them, follows the success of the ‘Let’s Talk with Your Baby’ and ‘Let’s Talk with Under 5’s’ programmes, which ran earlier this year. Talking Tiddlers for babies aged 12-18 months and Talking Toddlers (18-24 months) will be piloted in the new year. View the classes here or visit the Southend Information Point website or our Facebook page.

If you are interested in helping us design services for children and families in Southend, or would like to attend any of the other courses currently being run, please contact the Communication and Language Team by emailing


Article published December 2016