Tots Talking

Tots Talking

What is Tots Talking?

Tots Talking is a programme developed by a group of parents to improve the language skills of two
year olds. It does this by encouraging parents to use contingent language and behaviours. Parents are shown examples of turn-taking, sharing the child’s interest, adding on to children’s comments and other contingent behaviours.

Tots Talking has eight sessions that run once a week, with small groups of 6–8 parents of two
year olds at risk of delayed language. Each session lasts for one hour.

The programme is supported by the Tots Talking app that parents can use on their phone. The app
gives information and reminders to help parents’ learning and encourage them to practise what
they’ve learned at home with their child.

If you want to see how simple changes in parental behaviour can affect a child’s speech and language, check out the following videos that form part of the course (they have 2 different ways of approaching an everyday task).


  • Tots Talking Videos

How does it work?

The weekly sessions are run by early years practitioners who have completed the Tots Talking
Facilitator Training. The facilitator will decide on the best time to run Tots Talking each week. The group runs without the children attending so you may need to arrange for crèche facilities. Children may come in for the last 5 minutes so parents can show them what they have made but this is optional.

What is included?

  • Facilitator guide to help run the sessions 
  • T shirts for the children of the parents 
  • Poster to advertise the program
  • Invitations for parents
  • Access to the Tots Talking App (iOS and Android)
  • Support from I CAN

Who is Tots Talking for?

Tots Talking is aimed at parents and caregivers of 2 year old children who are not using contingent
language with them. Parents who may benefit from the intervention are those who don’t say very
much to their children or don’t respond verbally to children’s interactions with them (although they
may respond in other ways). It is not aimed at parents of children with SEND.


The resources cost £250 per setting plus the cost of training. Please get in touch with I CAN so that we can help find suitable trainers in your region.

Next steps

Please contact I CAN on or 020 7843 1515 for more information.


Sign up to get the latest news and research about children’s communication

* indicates required