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NELI Preschool

NELI Preschool is a new oral language enrichment and intervention programme for children in the year before they enter formal education – usually three to four year olds.

The programme provides a 20-week evidence-based language intervention for all children, as well as additional targeted support for the children who need it the most.

It includes an easy-to-use and reliable assessment of language skills, called LanguageScreen, CPD-certified training and end-to-end support

Programme Structure

NELI Preschool includes three main components. Reliable and easy-to-use language screening, easy-to-access practitioner training and the 20-week enrichment and intervention programme.

Language assessment

LanguageScreen is a quick, reliable and highly accurate language assessment app. Any adult in the setting can, in less that ten minutes, obtain a comprehensive, personalised report and standardised score of a child’s language ability. LanguageScreen is used to assess the language skills of all children in the setting, accurately identify the children who need additional targeted support and evaluate the progress all children have made at the end of the programme.

CPD-certified training

NELI Preschool training is delivered completely online so you can complete the courses at your own pace. The courses are CPD-certified and will take 8-10 hours to complete. Training explores language development, critical strategies to support language skills, how to deliver the NELI Preschool programme and videos of NELI Preschools sessions. You are mentored throughout by the research team and speech and language professionals.

We strongly recommend training as many people in your setting as you can to help promote a language-rich culture and a supportive NELI Preschool dynamic among all staff.

Whole class enrichment with targeted support

The NELI Preschool programme is built around the shared reading and guided play of 20 carefully selected and beautiful Nosy Crow books. The intervention targets children’s vocabulary knowledge, narrative (storytelling) skills and active listening. It is a guided and fully resourced programme.

Each week in the 20-week programme focuses on a different book, teaching the children ‘Special Words’ from the books and building their narrative skills with a range of fun activities. All the children in the setting take part in daily whole group language enrichment sessions. The children in the setting with weak language skills also benefit from additional support from small group and individual sessions.

NELI Preschool Impact

A randomized controlled trial led by the NELI team at the University of Oxford showed that NELI Preschool significantly improved the oral language skills of children taking part. The trial included 65 nurseries and over 1,500 children and many of these nurseries have continued to make NELI Preschool a key part of their curriculum.

What are settings saying about NELI Preschool

Teachers and nursery practitioners who delivered the programme in trials highly praised the programme for: its clear structure and high-quality material, the impact it had on children as well as the broader impact it had on reducing overall staff workload and much more. Here are some things nursery practitioners and managers had to say about the programme.

We have been blown away by the progress that children are making as a result of NELI Preschool. Their confidence to express themselves is the most noticeable.

Yvonne Langan, EYFS Lead
Rosebuds Day Nursery, Liverpool, England

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