Closing the Word Gap with Jean Gross

Wednesday 21 November 2018 1-4.30pm
The Tomlinson Centre, Queensbridge Road, E8 3ND
£50 + VAT per delegate


Join Jean Gross, former government Communication Champion for children, at this practical half-day expert event aimed at headteachers and literacy leads. This event will provide a framework for effective action to build children’s language skills from early years to the end of primary school. It explores what we mean by the word gap, and why it matters.

The curriculum and assessment system now place heavy demands on children’s vocabulary knowledge. Schools are increasingly concerned about the implications for many of their children; government have made closing the word gap a key part of their strategy to increase social mobility.

Showcasing effective approaches in schools and settings across the country, it summarises research on what helps children and young people develop breadth and depth of vocabulary, and highlights the importance of three key factors: a place to talk, a reason to talk and support for talk.

Key areas to be explored

  • The links between vocabulary and reading comprehension
  • How to create communication-supportive classroom and school environments
  • Whole-class approaches to developing vocabulary and wider language skills
  • Choosing and implementing ‘catch-up’ strategies for those with limited language
  • Good practice in supporting parents and carers to develop their children’s language skills

Who should attend?

  • Primary headteachers
  • Primary deputy headteachers
  • Primary literacy leads

Jean Gross

Jean Gross‘s career in education as a teacher, an educational psychologist, author and an adviser to government is all about children who, one way or another, don’t have much going for them in their lives.

Until 2005, Jean was Senior Director within the Government’s Primary National Strategy, responsible for its work on overcoming barriers to achievement. More recently, she was England’s Communication Champion for Children. Her best-selling book, Time to Talk, now in its second edition, reflects the many examples of good practice she saw in this role.