TALK Derby DAY - 1 July 2020

TALK Derby DAY was held on Wednesday 1 July as a celebration of speech, language and communication – the skills that children and we all need to succeed in life.

Despite the restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we were delighted to see how many people got involved.

A wide range of different activities were held in dozens of Derby’s early years and other settings, including:

  • An Obstacle Course at Derwent Stepping Stones
  • Singing the days of the week, along with the signs, at First Friends
  • A Safari day at Harrington Nursery School
  • Making fruit kebabs at St James’ Infant School
  • Playing Articulate at St James’ Junior School
  • Story sessions at White House Nursery
  • A class bake off at Wyndham Primary Academy
  • Painting and talking about the transition to secondary school with Year 6 at Ashwood Spencer Academy

It was great to see comments from so many different people about the importance of learning to communicate well and the commitment to ensuring that this happens in Derby.

Below is a selection of photos posted on social media on the day. Thank you to everyone who shared their events with us!

£250 #TALKDerbyDAY prize draw winner

Everyone who shared their events on social media using the hashtag #TALKDerbyDAY, or who contacted us directly to tell us about their plans and activities, were put into a draw to win £250 for the school or setting of their choice.

We’re excited to announce that Amy Calpin, a Year 5 teacher at St James’ Junior School, is our prize draw winner!

Amy, who also leads computing and distance learning, got involved with TALK Derby through Ruth Bordoli, Oracy Lead at St James’, and her own role in using language as a  memory retention technique.

Amy told us: “I really enjoyed the different TALK Derby DAY activities and introducing the children to something new. I’m extremely grateful for winning £250, it will be an amazing help for our school in developing our children’s spoken language skills!”

Along with the numbers of children with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN), there is also a significant proportion of children in St James’ Junior School with other types of SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disability) and children who are eligible for Pupil Premium funding.

St James’ is running a whole school Oracy Project in the autumn, which will also be used to celebrate the 80% of its pupils who speak English as an additional language (EAL). It plans to use the prize money to buy two new sets of Easi-Speak Microphones and docking stations, so that more pupils have access to such equipment.

Ruth Bordoli said: “The microphones will support children using EAL to record their English vocabulary and enable those with SLCN and SEND to develop their thoughts and ideas and to become more confident in using spoken English.

“They’ll be a valuable tool in enabling all our children to become more confident in articulating their ideas, helping them to record longer passages of speech as they work with their peers.”

St Giles School

St Giles School – the only special primary school in Derby – joined in TALK Derby DAY by creating a signing video to celebrate speech, language and communication at their school.

The Hampshire Road school, which was recently awarded ‘World Class’ status; given to Ofsted-rated outstanding schools who maintain their excellence, asked members of staff and pupils to capture and celebrate their achievements.

Executive head teacher Clive Lawrence said: “Developing speech, language and communication needs plays an important part of our school curriculum. Pupils at St Giles School communicate in different ways – such as reaching out, giggling and using facial expressions, using a communication board, signs or symbols - and we wanted to celebrate this.

TALK Derby is designed to inspire everyone – parents, carers and families, businesses, schools, colleges and other organisations in the city – and we were delighted to take part.”