Aislinn Laing
The Daily Telegraph
January 11, 2010

Although, according to recent surveys, they know an average of 40,000 words, they tend to favour a “teenspeak” used in text messages, on social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace and in internet chat rooms like MSN.

One poll, commissioned by Tesco, revealed that while children had the vocabulary to be articulate, the top 20 words they used – including the Vicky Pollard lexicon of “yeah”, “no” and “but” – accounted for about a third of all the words they used.

According to Jean Gross, England’s first Communication Champion for Children who started in the post this month, the lack of range will impact negatively on their chances of getting a job.

Miss Gross is planning to launch a nationwide campaign next year to ensure children use their full language potential and are not impeded in the classroom and later, the workplace, because they are inarticulate.

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