Developing Talkers/Hablemos Juntos Curricula and Training

Developing Talkers and its Spanish counterpart, Hablemos Juntos, are curriculum supplements that were created by researchers at the Children’s Learning Institute to support young children’s language and literacy skills, focusing on three domains of early language: vocabulary, comprehension, and speaking skills. These resources are designed to complement an existing core curriculum and include a multi-tiered approach with Tier 1 (whole group) and Tier 2 (small group) lessons included. All lessons are based on read alouds of narrative and informational genres of texts that address a range of science topics.

In 2011, researchers at CLI examined the effectiveness of Developing Talkers Pre-Kindergarten Version 1.0 and found promising evidence, as described in the journal of Early Education and Development. An external review of the curriculum by the Office of Head Start rated the program as being extremely comprehensive across language development domains, covering both receptive and expressive language throughout the curriculum. The Office of Head Start also found that goals and objectives for each lesson are specific, measurable, child-focused, developmentally appropriate, and aligned learning activities, as well as scope and sequence. They also found Developing Talkers to have “multiple supports provided to facilitate implementation”, and a variety of teacher prompts to enhance whole, small, and individualized instruction. Overall, the Office of Head Start determined that the curriculum provides strong support to educators regarding how to provide high-quality interactions that are embedded within learning activities.

Version 1.0 kits are no longer available for purchase. In 2014, a team of researchers at CLI began developing a new version, 2.0, of the Developing Talkers curriculum and studied its effectiveness in a pilot study. Version 2.0 pre-kindergarten and kindergarten kits are currently available for purchase from the CLI Solutions Group. There are many exciting changes in Version 2.0 – click here to learn more!

Goals of Developing Talkers


Increase Listening & Speaking Skills


Increase Academic Vocabulary


Support Students’ Self-Regulation

  • Answering questions at literal- and higher-levels
  • Scaffolding and expanding children’s language
  • Comprehension skills instruction
  • Conversational and turn-taking skills
  • Build knowledge, including scientific domains
  • Systematic academic word selection 
  • Student-friendly definitions
  • Opportunities for students to say and use a range of words (breadth)
  • Multiple exposures to sophisticated words for deep learning (depth)
  • Promote word consciousness, self-learning strategies
  • Self-control
  • Maintain attention
  • Curiosity and desire to learn
  • Setting goals
  • Share ideas
  • Respect for others
  • Perspective taking
  • Optimism

Materials Included

  • Pairs of narrative and informational texts matched by topic
  • In-text talking points that include questions to deepen understanding, vocabulary elaborations, and opportunities to act out parts of the text
  • Supports for English Language Learners, including cognates, translations, and basic word activities
  • Vocabulary cards with child-friendly definitions, visual supports, and meaning elaborations
  • Picture cards for each day’s small-group vocabulary activity
  • Self-regulation supports to encourage students to make more good choices than bad choices
  • Explicit comprehension skills lessons and hand signal posters
  • Graphic organizers and mini puppets to scaffold students’ retellings of texts
  • Multiple meaning word teaching strategies
  • Word consciousness games and transition activities to encourage attention to target words beyond formal instruction
  • “Draw & Write” student response sheets with writing prompts
  • And much more!


Please contact us at to request more information about Developing Talkers training options.

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Developing Talkers Version 2 Sample Materials 

More Information

  • Visit our website at for more information regarding Developing Talkers.
  • To purchase Developing Talkers and Hablemos Juntos kits, and request training for these curriculum supplements, please contact the CLI Solutions Group.