Describe how to establish respectful, professional relationships with children.
Whilst trying to establish a respectful, professional relationship with children it is important that you are able to adapt yourself easily to the level of the child/children you are working with. You need time, patience, listening skills and good communicational skills. It is important that you are aware and take into account the individual abilities, personalities and cultural needs of the children as this will vary due to every child being different and having different needs. Children have to be able to feel a level of trust with you and feel safe around you in order to develop a relationship with them, they have to know and be able to feel that they are understood, not only via speech but through behavior and as a person. It is also crucial when maintaining a professional relationship with children that you have that line of friend and teaching assistant. If you try to be their friend your level of authority will be crushed and it will be difficult for you to maintain control of the class as well as the individual children, however this does not mean that you can’t be friendly towards them! But to just ensure that the barriers are not crossed.
There are a numerous amount of ways that you can communicate effectively and positively with children. Types of communication are:
Non verbal – without words, more through expressions and gestures Formal –message is exact and specific
Informal- more relaxed and causal
Whilst building a positive relationship with children you will need to: Show respect
Be supportive to child
Ask questions to show your interest in child’s points
Make good eye contact
Think about your facial expressions and body language that you use Earn children’s trust
Be honest and fair at all times
Showing all these qualities will enable you to build a positive and effective relationship with the children and show that you respect and value them as young people. Showing interest in the children will help the child to recognize that you are there to support them. According to Burnham 2004, “children of all ages, abilities and cultures need to feel secure and valued, and your interactions with them should demonstrate this”. In my setting there is a child that is difficult to engage in conversation but however is very intelligent and capable of the work that has been set. It is the initial start of contact that can prove challenging. This is where I use a variety of verbal and non verbal communication to gain his attention. It is firstly important that I am constantly using good eye contact with him, welcoming body language and that I am smiling this helps him to feel that I am listening and interested in him and his thoughts and opinions. Once I have managed this I then use a whiteboard and marker to write down the key points of the lesson, making sure I don’t overload the space with information as this might cause him to lose interest. Whilst doing this I ask him for his input and his understanding of the task so I know that he is following what is happening. To keep him engaged I refer the work to his own points of interest; this usually makes him smile and start to express his ideas in depth. All the way through I am making sure I maintain eye contact and that I don’t shut him off when he is speaking as this could cause a negative emotion and he could then lose interest.
Describe with examples how to behave appropriately for a child’s stage of development. Children all develop at different stages, it is vital that you are aware of this and that your behavior is appropriate to this. Children are assessed on their areas of development which will reveal their areas of weakness as well as strengths and assist us in knowing what stage the children are at individually and how we can provide the best level of care to them, as well as the individual assessments children are also...
Bibliography: Burnham.L, 2004, Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools , London, Heinemann.
Burnham.L, 2010, Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools (Primary), London, Heinemann.
www.education.gov.uk, department for education, every child matters, last accessed 30/11/2012.
Kamen.T, 2010, Teaching assistants handbook level 2, London, Hodder eduction
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