TALKABOUT

The hugely poplar resources series which includes practical books to help staff to develop social skills.

Brought to you by Speechmark, they provide a structured programme for teaching and measuring social skills.

Use the tabs on the left of the page to discover more about TALKABOUT, including expert author Alex Kelly, Alex Kelly Ltd, and training courses / CPD.


Brand New Resource

Talkabout Sex and Relationships 1

A Programme to Develop Intimate Relationship Skills

by Alex Kelly & Emily Dennis

Talkabout Sex & Relationships 1 is a comprehensive toolkit for all therapists, educators and support staff who deliver relationship education to people with special needs. It is intended primarily to support groupwork but activities can be easily adapted to suit the needs of individuals with varying abilities.

Paperback – 2017-07-27 


New Editions

These 2nd Editions are of bestselling professional workbooks used to support educators and therapists who deliver social and relationship skills groups for children and young adults with social, emotional or behavioural difficulties.

The new editions feature full-colour illustrations and handouts, and include new introductions by Alex Kelly reflecting on her own experiences of using the resources since they were first developed.

Talkabout for Children 1

Developing Self-Awareness and Self-Esteem, 2nd Edition

by Alex Kelly

Paperback – 2017-07-05

Talkabout for Children 2

Developing Social Skills, 2nd Edition

by Alex Kelly

Paperback – 2017-07-10

Talkabout for Children 3

Developing Friendship Skills, 2nd Edition

by Alex Kelly

Paperback – 2017-07-05

Talkabout for Teenagers

Developing Social and Emotional Communication Skills, 2nd Edition

by Alex Kelly & Brian Sains

Paperback – 2017-07-11

With a new resource and editions out now, we've spoken with TALKABOUT creator and author Alex Kelly. Read what she had to say below...


For those who are unaware of TALKABOUT, can you give us a brief overview?

" TALKABOUT is a complete programme that develops self esteem, social skills and friendship skills. It is based on teaching children in group settings either in school or college but can be adapted to be used on a 1:1 basis or at home. It uses a hierarchical method of developing skills where basic or foundation skills are taught before more complicated skills."


How did TALKABOUT come to exist?

"The original TALKABOUT book came about because I was working in a FE college with a large number of young adults with intellectual disabilities and after a year of social skills interventions, and with pre and post assessments on all the students, I noticed a pattern in who was responding well to the social skills groups and who wasn’t.

It all centred around the hierarchy of self awareness coming before non-verbal skills and non-verbal coming before verbal and assertiveness coming last. I decided to put together a programme of intervention for this college based on this hierarchy and thought the name TALKABOUT was quite good! 3 years later and lots of testing and piloting, I decided it was worth publishing. Later on I noticed the link with self esteem and friendship skills so these were added to the hierarchy about 5 years later.

After that I realised that what people really want are resources that are right for a specific client group, so we started with writing a TALKABOUT book aimed at secondary mainstream children and then wrote the Primary series TALKABOUT for Children because you need very different approaches to different types of children and adults."


What separates your books from others in the market?

"There are three reasons I think make the TALKABOUT resources unique.

  1. They are the only social skills books that I know of that work through a hierarchy from self-awareness and self-esteem to assertiveness (and now sex and relationships).
  2. They are a total package with term plans which make them very easy to use in schools as they are a scheme of work designed around academic years (I am married to an ex-teacher so I know what teachers need to make it easy to embed into school life!).
  3. They are a total package, so includes all the games and worksheets to work on these skills."

What feature do you think will be most beneficial to users?

"As a busy therapist or teacher, I think the fact that each book is written with them in mind so the sessions are planned, the games are ready to make up and the books are therefore pretty easy to use."


What is the one message you want readers to take away with them?

"The TALKABOUT books have developed over 20 years to be resources that work and that children enjoy. Please don’t dip in and use activities randomly. All of my research and experience has shown me that a hierarchical approach to teaching skills is the most effective. So if necessary start at the beginning and work through for as long as you need to. In this way we are setting children up to succeed not fail."


What are the benefits of using your books in schools and private practice?

"Teachers like the TALKABOUT books because they can work as schemes of work for a whole academic year and the planning has all been done for them. Similarly in private practice the fact that it is all planned out, is obviously attractive as it cuts down on planning time."


Are there any factors or adjustments needed for TALKABOUT to be introduced into a school or private setting?

"You just need a group of people who need work at the same level or who will work well together."


How do you think your books help address SLCN?

"Many children with SLCN also struggle with their social skills and with making friends and they can also struggle with their self esteem. So even though my books are not specifically aimed at improving Speech and Language, they are often appropriate resources for children with SLCN."


What are your future plans?

"We are writing the second volume of the sex and relationships book this year. We are also doing some research into the effectiveness of TALKABOUT within schools. Finally I am busy writing my theory book on social skills which will cover all the theory behind this subject!"

The TALKABOUT programme offers:

  • a hierarchial approach to teaching social skills
  • an assessment and outcome measures
  • activities and plans of intervention
  • content suitable for all ages
  • content suitable to put onto a school curriculum
  • proven effectiveness

"The resources reflect the essential stages of social development in life. Not only do they teach the rules, they make the experience a journey of fun" - Joseph Hoyle, SLT assistant, 2017

Alex Kelly, the author of the TALKABOUT Series, is a speech and language therapist with over 30 years' experience of working with people who have difficulties with their social skills, self-esteem and their relationships. She now lectures internationally on the subject of how to assess and teach social skills, self-esteem, and friendship skills.

Alex left the NHS in 2009 and now runs her own business -  Alex Kelly Ltd - alongside her husband who was previously a teacher. Alex Kelly Ltd provide training and consultancy work, and speech and language therapy into over 30 local schools. With a team of 24 Speech and Language Therapists and Communication Fascilitators, they offer:

  • TRAINING in all aspects of Communication & Social Skills around the UK & abroad
  • SPEECH & LANGUAGE THERAPY for whole schools, or for individuals in their home or at Alex Kelly Ltd headquaters
  • SPEAKING SPACE - a Day Service for adults with autism or a Learning Disability developing independence & communication through a Total Communication approach

Explore everything the TALKABOUT Series has to offer here.

Assessing and teaching SOCIAL SKILLS by Alex Kelly

A course that gives you a MEASURABLE, STRUCTURED & HIERARCHICAL approach to teaching social skills, self-esteem and friendship skills, & answers the following:

How do we assess these skills?
Where do we start work?
How do we teach it?
How do we help students embed these skills?

How can we demonstrate effectiveness?

The following course dates are available for 2017:

13-15 March, Hampshire
25-27 April, London
23-25 May, South Wales
17-19 October, Leeds
3-5 October, London
14-16 November, Hampshire

**5-7 December, Hampshire - 'TRAIN THE TRAINER' New Course**

The course costs £295 + VAT. For enquires, please contact Alex Kelly or Amy Green

t: 02380 987134

e: amy@alexkelly.biz

What do others say?

"LOVE the data analysis! This will be so useful" - Emma Andrews, SLT, 2016

"This 3 day course has been life changing & the most engaging I have ever attended. I feel excited & confident in delivering Talkabout" - Sally Harper-Strong, Teacher, 2016

For more information, please visit Alex Kelly Ltd

Check out Alex Kelly Ltd on Facebook here.

Social Skills Training from Alex Kelly

High quality, practical and engaging training courses in all aspects of social skills training from 1 hour workshops to 3 day courses are available from Alex Kelly Ltd.

1 day courses are popular inset days for schools or introduction days for parents or professionals.

2 day courses cover how to develop social skills & self esteem, including how to access and plan where to start; different strategies for intervention including running group and writing stories; and evaluating effectiveness.

3 day courses includes sections on developing friendship skills and also more on using data to measure the effectiveness of your work.

For more information, please visit Alex Kelly Ltd

Check out Alex Kelly Ltd on Facebook here.

More Training from Alex Kelly

Centre of excellence approach

Alex can help you become a centre of excellence in developing social skills by providing you with on-site training and support over 12 months. To date, Alex has supported 11 schools across the UK to become cnetres of excellence. This usually takes 4-5 days.

Train the Trainer

This is a new course to train a small number of people across the UK to be local Talkabout Trainers. This is a 3 day course and is only open to people who have already attended Alex's 3 day course and who have an active role in developing social skills.

Additional topic for training

Alex also offers training in BODY LANGUAGE: the art of non verbal communication; LISTENING SKILLS; using PUPPETS & ROLE PLAY; and writing THERAPEUTIC STORIES. She also offers training in other areas such as autism, learning disability, and total communication.

For more information, please visit Alex Kelly Ltd

Check out Alex Kelly Ltd on Facebook here.

GENERAL:

"Alex is a vibrant, energetic presenter who made me enthralled. She is incredibly generous with her ideas and suggestions. Thanks!" - Jenni Pearce, Clinical Psychologist, Sydney, 2016

"The best inset day I have been on since becoming a teacher." - David Arnott, Teacher, Hampshire 2014

"Fantastic, engaging and inspirational. I could see ideas I could use across the curriculum." - A Dunford, 2015

"This training was terrific. I feel motivated, empowered and confident. I can't wait to get my hands on those groups." - Karen GhaziTorbati, Cardiff 2016

"All in all, Alex, what a wonderful world for kids it would be if your social skills programme were in all schools across the continents." - Catherine Varapodio Longley, Parent, Melbourne, 2013

TRAINING QUOTES:

“Wow! What a super 3 days! I can’t wait to get the opportunity to put this into practice.” - Nicole Thomas, Teacher, 2017

“Thank you SO much – it’s been incredibly useful. It was informative, fun, exciting and has truly inspired me to revolutionise social skills in my school.” - Sarah Sharpe, SLT, 2017

RESOURCES QUOTES:

“ I feel very lucky to work in a school where our pupils get the opportunity to utilise Talkabout resources and to see the benefit that this has made to them and their peers. You are making a difference!” – Nicole Thomas, Teacher, 2017

“All of the resources make it incredibly easy to run a session, especially with all of the structured session plans available. I find the group cohesion cards particularly great as it is another resource that does not need to be prepared.” - Hannah Anderson, Communication Facilitator, 2017

“The resources reflect the essential stages of social development in life. Not only do they teach the rules, they make the experience a journey of fun” - Joseph Hoyle, SLT assistant, 2017

ASSESSMENT TOOL & TARGET ANALYSIS:

“Invaluable! The data will be a real pleaser. It will also be a motivator for the staff to see that they are making a difference.” - Kelly Jones, Teacher, 2017

“So good to learn the assessment process and target setting. I feel this is a valuable element to take back to establish Talkabout as a process/result producing strategy.” - Jenny Woodford, Behaviour Therapist, 2017.

“The Talkabout Assessment wheel and incremental data for pre and post assessment is fab. Pretty much invaluable.” - Joseph Hoyle, SLT assistant, 2017

New & Bestsellers

  • Talkabout Sex and Relationships 1

    A Programme to Develop Intimate Relationship Skills

    By Alex Kelly, Emily Dennis

    Talkabout Sex & Relationships 1 is a comprehensive toolkit for all therapists, educators and support staff who deliver relationship education to people with special needs. It is intended primarily to support groupwork but activities can be easily adapted to suit the needs of individuals with…

    Paperback – 2017-08-01
    Routledge
    Talkabout

  • Talkabout for Teenagers (second edition)

    Developing Social and Emotional Communication Skills, 2nd Edition

    By Alex Kelly, Brian Sains

    Talkabout for Teenagers is a bestselling professional workbook supporting educators and therapists who deliver social and relationship skills groups for older children and young adults with social, emotional or behavioural difficulties. It is a complete group work resource that offers a…

    Paperback – 2017-07-11
    Routledge
    Talkabout

  • Talkabout for Children 2 (second edition)

    Developing Social Skills, 2nd Edition

    By Alex Kelly

    Talkabout for Children: Developing Social Skills is a bestselling professional workbook supporting educators and therapists who deliver social and relationship skills groups for children with social, emotional or behavioural difficulties. Social competence is an essential aspect of our quality of…

    Paperback – 2017-07-10
    Routledge
    Talkabout

  • Talkabout for Children 1 (second edition)

    Developing Self-Awareness and Self-Esteem, 2nd Edition

    By Alex Kelly

    Talkabout for Children: Developing Self-Awareness and Self-Esteem is a bestselling professional workbook supporting educators and therapists who deliver social and relationship skills groups for children with social, emotional or behavioural difficulties. Self-awareness and self-esteem is an…

    Paperback – 2017-07-05
    Routledge
    Talkabout

  • Talkabout for Children 3 (second edition)

    Developing Friendship Skills, 2nd Edition

    By Alex Kelly

    Talkabout for Children: Developing Friendship Skills is a bestselling professional workbook supporting educators and therapists who deliver social and relationship skills groups for children with social, emotional or behavioural difficulties. This resources creates the final level of the Talkabout…

    Paperback – 2017-07-05
    Routledge
    Talkabout

  • Talkabout

    A Social Communication Skills Package, 2nd Edition

    By Alex Kelly

    This core Talkabout manual is a practical resource essential for Speech and Language Therapists and other professionals who need to help people with special needs develop social skills. Over 60 activities form an extensive, structured social skills programme that can easily be adapted for use with…

    Paperback – 2016-04-28
    Routledge
    Talkabout

  • Talkabout for Adults

    By Alex Kelly

    alkabout Adults is a practical resource to help therapists or support staff to develop self-awareness and self-esteem in adults. It has been particularly aimed at adults with an intellectual disability (learning disability) or older children with special needs. It has been adapted from the…

    Paperback – 2014-04-28
    Routledge
    Talkabout

Discover the Series

Explore everything the TALKABOUT series has to offer, including a poster, an assessment CD, a board game, a DVD, and more practical books.

TALKABOUT Series

More Practical Resources

Discover the variety of Speech & Language Therapy (SLT) practical resources available through Speechmark.

More from Speechmark

We also offer resources for Special Educational Needs (SEN), Social & Emotional Skills, Early Years, and Mental Health.

Contact Us

If you are interested in purchasing or distributing Speechmark products, please contact our dedicated Sales Executive Louise Perrier at Louise.Perrier@tandf.co.uk or call +44 (0) 20 755 19109.