No Pens Day Wednesday

Putting spoken language in the spotlight



No Pens Day Wednesday is a national day of speaking and listening activities that takes place in schools and settings across the country.

Launched by The Communication Trust in 2009, I CAN now provides resources, advice and guidance for participating schools and settings.

The event raises awareness of communication as a key life skill. Good verbal communication skills (sometimes called oracy) are fundamental for learning to read and write, managing emotions, developing friendships and entering employment. However, spoken language is underrepresented in the curriculum in comparison to written language skills. 

By putting down your pens and shouting out about spoken language, you can:

  • Develop pupils’ spoken language skills
  • Develop staff’s understanding of spoken language and embed it into your curriculum
  • Try out new teaching approaches and engage pupils in exciting pens-free activities
  • Identify pupils who struggle with spoken language and need additional support to develop their speech, language and communication skills

Find out more and start planning your day by downloading our introductory pack below. For full resources, sign up to take part. 

No Pens Day Wednesday took place on 13th November 2019 this year, but if you couldn't take part, resources will be available all year round. Please sign up above to stay informed about next year's event.  




Sign up to take part

Older students can benefit from the day just as much as young children! Sign up below to access resources for early years settings, primary schools, secondary schools and special schools. 



Supporting SEND on No Pens Day

Many children with special educational needs and disabilities also have speech, language and communication needs. The event can be a great way to identify and support these pupils. 



Taking spoken language further

No Pens Day Wednesday is just one day of the year, but we encourage you to keep developing spoken language skills by using our guidance and resources. 


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