PRIMARY school children were encouraged to become chatterboxes for the day in an initiative designed to boost communications skills.

Reception classes at Reid Street Primary School, Darlington, spent weeks learning the words to four songs, which they then performed to friends and family.

The Chatterbox Challenge aims to develop speech and language through fun activities and a performance.

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Dozens of four and five year olds also looked at Chinese culture and performed a dragon dance for an appreciative audience.

Foundation stage leader Amanda Jones said: “It has worked really well. The children have been incredibly excited and have been going home talking about it.

“While it has been hard work and challenging, the children have done nothing but chatter about what they have learned and parents were delighted.

“Children need to develop skills in speaking and listening as this is the basis for their literacy development. Chatterbox provides an exciting, enjoyable, yet challenging means of helping our children develop these essential basic skills.”