Early Words Together


Early Words Together helps parents support their young child’s literacy and language development.

Early years needs to be at the heart of education recovery post-pandemic. With 96% of schools concerned about communication and language development in children who first started school last September [EEF, April 2021] and 64% of parents of pre-school children worried about the impact on their child’s development or wellbeing during the pandemic [Sutton Trust, May 2021], it is vital that high quality support for our youngest children is prioritised, especially those already at risk of poorer outcomes. Explore our Early Words Together programmes below to support children and families as part of your recovery curriculum.

About the programme

Up to 50% of children in disadvantaged areas start school without the language skills they need to progress. We train early years staff and volunteers to work with parents and children aged three to five, building parents’ confidence so that they can support their children’s communication, language and literacy skills at home.

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The impact

Early Words Together is proven to:

  • Increase children’s language development

    Underperforming children who take part in Early Words Together catch up with their peers in their understanding of spoken language in just three months.

  • Improve the home learning environment

    86% of parents who take part in the programme report they now talk more to their children – and two-thirds feel more confident about sharing books with their child.

  • Improve parental engagement

    73% of parents and carers who took part in Early Words Together now read with their child every day – up from 53% at the start of the programme.

  • Help the families most in need

    Families who read the least often at the start of the programme show a 91% increase in reading frequency by the end.


We have a wealth of downloadable resources for schools and settings delivering Early Words Together.

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Programme adaptations

Early Words Together is a flexible programme which can be adapted to suit the needs of a particular area or demographic. If you'd like to speak to our early years team about running Early Words Together in your area, get in touch with us to find out more.

  • Woman and 2 girls reading

    Early Words Together for MLL families

    Download resources for supporting multilingual families through Early Words Together.
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  • EWT

    Early Words Together at Two

    Early Words Together at Two is an adaptation of our Early Words Together programme, designed specifically for families of two-year-olds.
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  • Dad and son sharing a book.jpg

    Early Words Together at Three

    Explore resources to support schools to deliver Early Words Together at Three.
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  • EWT2 outdoors resized test.png

    Early Words Together Outdoors

    Resources to support practitioners to deliver our Early Words Together at Two Outdoors programme.
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  • Early Words Together for London

    Early Words Together for London

    This programme helps parents in three London boroughs support their young child’s literacy and language development.
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Success stories

We work with schools, settings and families in some of the most disadvantaged areas of the UK. Read their stories: