Communication and professional relationships
With children, young people and adults.
When working within a school environment you have to have effective communication and also show you have strong communication skills to convey to the other people within the environment that you are approachable. You need to make sure all the individuals feel valued and secure. However you also need to set clear ground rules for effective communication and this will develop a mutually effective relationship. The best forms of communication are as follows: * Verbal – speaking, using appropriate language for the age of the person * Non - verbal – Sign language, body language and eye contact * Formal – In the classroom or meeting environment
* Informal – General chat, questions for instance “how do you think you have done?” Remember the children watch you as an adult. Make sure lessons are prepared to go from the children walking in e.g. worksheets ready etc. as this is a positive start to the lesson for them. If it is not ready and you have to set up lessons while the children have to wait the children will lose interest and cause a negative reaction. Another way to make a positive learning environment is to ask the children questions, for example, “do you understand the task we have to do?”, “can you tell me what you feel the outcome of the task maybe?” By asking those questions this ensures that you are aware they have full understanding of the task they have to achieve and also gives them the opportunity to ask any questions that may arise to make sure they do have full understanding. By using the four ways of effective communication you will also have an impact as a role model, as the children or young people you are working with will take lead from your behaviour, if you show respect they will follow your actions and give respect. The definition of a role model is “significant person who’s actions, speech or mannerisms are imitated by the child” – Oxford Dictionary 2011. Children will be more likely to want to learn from adults who communicate and get on than those adults who did not communicate effectively and they feel isn’t approachable. This in turn is also teaching children to respect and communicate with each other in the appropriate way. Be friendly but authoritive. Teena Kamen states in the book teaching assistants handbook 2003 “Adults within the school also need to be good role models for behaviour. Your use on inter-personal skills with pupils and other members of staff should provide a positive role model for behaviour and effective working relationships”. Karmen, 2003, page 34. Communication difficulties may arise if the person hasn’t fully understood the task, they may have special needs for example dyslexia, partial hearing or if there is a breakdown in information. We need to make sure that we adapt the environment to meet all needs and also make sure you are teaching at the level of each individual child. “Communication difficulties can lead to isolation and frustration” Karmen, 2003 page 170. It is vital when working with children and young people that all areas of communication are followed to make sure all persons within the environment make progress in their daily tasks of work and learning. It is vital that we take into account the age and development of the children we are supporting as the consequence if we don’t can lead to a huge breakdown in communication thus making the child feel insecure and vulnerable. For instance, we would not have the same conversation with a 5 year old than that of a 20 year old. Our language would be appropriate to the child’s level to be understood and relevant. The same as we dont talk to a 15 year old the way we do a 7 year old as that may make them feel we are patronising them. We also need to take into account if the child or person has any special needs e.g. hearing impairment. We need to make sure we find...