Small Talk Story County (STSC) focuses on helping parents improve the quantity and quality of the language environment of the home. The amount of parental language input to children directly impacts children’s brain development. Children who receive less enriching language from parents demonstrate slower and less efficient language processing, which can be measured by 18 months (Fernald, Marchman, & Weislder, 2013). This directly affects the child’s ability to acquire literacy skills, which the lack of is associated with a host of negative consequences including lack of motivation, dropping out of school, delinquency, poor employment opportunities, poverty, and poor health (Baker et al., 2007). Fortunately, this long-lasting consequence can be avoided.
RISE staff are part of the Small Talk research team and serve as data managers, assisting with data collection and data management.