1.1: Communication can take a variety of forms, using both conventional language and body language. The communication may be formal, which is a situation you may have created such as an adult led activity or informal. Such as playtime or social situations. Good communication is central to working with children, young people, families and carers. It helps build trust, and encourages them to seek advice and use services. It is key to establishing and maintaining relationships, and is an active process that involves listening, questioning, understanding and responding. You should always communicate with them appropriately to match the stage of development, personal circumstances, and needs of the person you’re talking to. It is important to be able to communicate both on a one-on-one basis and in a group. Communication is not just about the words you use, but also about the way you’re speaking and your body language. You need to feel and show empathy and sincerity, and above all, listen. You need to take account of culture and context. For example, you need to be aware and communicate appropriately if English is an additional language, or the child is disabled or at risk of under-achievement or other poor outcomes. Effective communication extends to involving children, young people, their parents and carers in the design and delivery of services and decisions that affect them. It is important to consult the people affected and consider opinions and perspectives from the outset. Another crucial element of effective communication is developing trust between the workforce and children, young people, parents and carers – as well as within different sectors of the workforce itself. Stages of communication in children and young people: Pre- linguistic stage 3-6 months:
* Cries when hungry, upset and tied
* Coos and gurgles when happy
* Differentiates tones of voice
* By 3 months, reacts positively to main carer’s voice. * Begins to smile at people.
* Cries but can be comforted
* Add bubbles to sound
* Makes sounds such as ‘da da’
* Chuckles, laughs and sometimes squeals with pleasure
* Bubbles much more
* Begins to use vowels and consonants, e.g.dadadadada
* By 9 months uses sounds needed for language
* By 10 months understands about 18 words
* Begins to gesticulate, e.g.to point
* Begins to love games such as ‘round and round the garden’ When communicating with children, a number of skills need to be demonstrated to communicate effectively. Children learn to communicate through the responses of others, if they feel they have not had their contributions valued they are less likely to initiate communication themselves appropriate responses reinforce the child’s self-esteem, values this is important in building relationships initiating conversations and finding out the answers to questions builds on the language skills that are integral to child’s learning. In the setting working with children with behavioural and emotional difficulties, it is important to be firm and direct when communicating but also acknowledge when they have contributed positively in discussion to reinforce self-esteem. There are some instances when eye contact with the individuals is enough to stop the inappropriate behaviour. When you communicate with the children or young people in your setting, you will use three different skills: Body language: Just as adults can give us signs with their body language so can children. Their body movements and gestures can tell us so much that they can’t. Sometimes children don’t know how to express themselves so it is up to adults to be able to read what they can’t say. Here are common body language movements that parents and adults can learn from:
Happy: Probably the easiest and most rewarding body language a parent can see in a child,...