New school curriculum aims to help elementary school students develop their language skills

Ros Wilson

Submitted by Hannah Whyte

A local literary guru is helping elementary school students develop their writing and speaking skills through a new development program.

Talk: Write offers students aged 4 to 12 the opportunity to enrich their vocabulary and language structures in English.

The system was developed by education scholar and literary expert Ros Wilson, whose 55-year career spans teaching, counseling, keynote speeches and research.

The Talk: Write system is a progression of Ros’s earlier work, underpinning the principles of the impact of speech on writing.

The program aims to ensure that all children, regardless of their background, can speak and write confidently in Standard English, while recognizing and valuing students’ local accents, dialects and languages.

Ros teaches at a school in Hong Kong

Ros, who is based in Leeds, West Yorkshire, believes the Talk: Write approach will support the creation or strengthening of a culture of orality in schools and celebrate the different ways people speak.

She said: “I am delighted to launch Talk: Write in UK schools. The project addresses issues that fascinate me enormously and it has been gratifying to draw on my own professional experience to develop the program.

“I have spent a lot of time in schools with children from difficult backgrounds, who face obstacles because of the ‘word gap’.

“I wanted to create a program that supports learning in a fun and flexible way, providing children with the tools to develop dexterity in their communication skills, while maintaining their own voice.

“Talk: Write aims to enrich children’s school experiences and provide teachers with a strong platform to develop and improve conversation and writing to achieve greater equality in education. “

Talk: Write uses games and activities to explore the 5 Speech Codes and 5 Sweet Characteristics of Language – covering the different types of language and structures that impact speaking and writing.

The program also provides counseling and support for children for whom English is an additional language, as well as teaching them to ‘change the code’ and maintain their writing stamina.

In addition to the Paid Talk: Write program, schools can also access a free Oracy Progression program, through the Ros website.

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