Impact Series: Agape’s Thrive by Five program enhances children’s conversation skills in preparation for kindergarten
Talking with babies and infants can feel one-sided for many parents. But according to Agape Child and Family Services (Agape), conversations with young children are proven pathways to promoting their brain and language development, long-term educational success, and social-emotional intelligence. As a result, the Memphis-based Christian ministry launched the Thrive by Five initiative in the fall of 2018 to better prepare young children for kindergarten. Once a week, children in the program wear a LENA device that monitors the number of back-and-forth conversations they have with any adult – even if they are indiscernible sounds. During class time, parents analyze the recordings and think of innovative ways to boost the number of conversations. Early results of the program show positive impacts for children.