Communications Skills Development
Communication is fundamental to children’s development; children need to be able to understand and be understood. Communication is the foundation of relationships and is essential for learning, play, and social interaction. Being able to communicate effectively is perhaps one of the most important of life skills.
Children who develop strong language and communication skills are more likely to arrive at school ready to learn. They also are less likely to have difficulties learning to read and are more likely to have higher levels of achievement in school. This is why the communication skills that babies learn in their first year sets the stage for success in developing reading, writing, and social skills later in life.
Children with communication difficulties are more likely to have behavior difficulties. Many children with identified behavior needs have previously unidentified speech, language, and communication needs.
Similarly, friendships are incredibly important for children. Making and keeping friends is difficult if a child has poor communication skills. Children often choose friends who are good at communicating, so children with difficulties are doubly disadvantaged.
Communication skills also help children manage and regulate their emotions, which is another crucial element of the equation. Children need the ability to express their feels in positive ways, get their message across, be understood, especially when it comes to principals of taking turns, working in teams, and resolving conflicts.
The interactions that children have with adults influence how children develop and learn. As a result, early childhood educators have a prime opportunity to provide children with interactions that can support children’s growth and development, particularly their language and communication skills.
Parents and educators must keep in mind that children develop at varying rates and differently depending upon several factors, such as personality and age. These factors and home language exposure affect children’s development of language and communication skills. During the first years of life, children’s brains are developing rapidly and laying the foundation for learning. Parents can begin encouraging communication from the time their children are born and can promote development communication by smiling, talking, playing, and reading with their children.
When teachers and parents provide children with high levels of language stimulation during the first years of life, children develop excellent communication skills for life and readiness for their future.
While we do our part at Little Harvard, heres a few things you can do at home too:-
Making time to talk regularly can be easier. if you have a special place to be close or you make a special time to talk each day. For example, you might have a special chair, or you could sit and talk with your child after she gets into bed each night.
Get your child talking by asking open-ended questions like ‘What was something fun you did today?’
Show interest and encourage your child to talk more by saying things like ‘Tell me more about …’, ‘Really!’ and ‘Go on …’. This sends your child the message that what he has to say is important to you.
Watch your child’s facial expressions and body language. Listening isn’t just about hearing your child’s words, but also about trying to understand what’s behind the words.
Prompt your child to tell you how she feels about things – for example, ‘It sounds like you felt left out when ____ wanted to play with the other kids at lunch’. If you get something wrong, just ask your child to help you understand.
Let your child finish talking and then respond. This sets a good example of listening for your child.
Avoid criticism and blame. If you’re angry about something your child has done, try to explain why you want her not to do it again. Appeal to her sense of empathy.
Be a good role model. Your child learns how to communicate by watching you carefully. When you talk with your child (and others) in a respectful way, this gives a powerful message about positive communication.
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