Explain why effective communication is important in developing positive relationships with children, young people and adults. It’s widely recognised that the more involved parents are in their child’s education, the better the pupil performs at school. Whether, it’s just being aware of their progress and understanding their achievements or parents taking a more active role and becoming involved with the school itself. In order to establish and maintain interest there needs to be regular and reliable communication and sharing of information between the school and pupils families.
Schools must create an effective partnership by providing an open and communicative environment with its wider community, forming a link between the classroom, home and the school and family. If there is a communication breakdown between school, parents and pupils this could have a damaging impact on the pupil’s educational and emotional performance. To be effective communicator and strengthen positive relationships we need to think about what we are going to say and how we are going to say it. Communication however, is a two way thing; it involves listening as well as speaking.
How we listen to others is important, being empathic builds good relationships with children and young people making them feel that you have seen their point of view. In doing this they will feel supported and understood and are much more likely to trust and be open with you. When effective communication is missing, teachers can misunderstand or be ignorant of children’s needs and expectations further more pupils may not feel listened to or understood. A lack of understanding can leave a pupil feeling worried or angry.
Teachers and other adults working in the school setting need to form a positive approach and model effective communication to help children understand the boundaries expected of them. If teacher’s expectations are met in the classroom then the pupil’s social, emotional and learning development will flourish. We all want to have good positive relationships with adults and children alike as it helps with our general wellbeing. If you treat people in the way you would like to be treated and can communicate effectively in all aspects of life, you form sound relationships.
Explain the principles of relationship building with children, young people and adults. We all want to feel comfortable with adults, children and young people without barriers or ill feelings. We usually have a general first impression on someone on the way they speak, act and look but relationships need to be built on, continuously. Within the school setting you need to consider how your communication with all staff, whatever position they may hold, can have an impact on not only on an individual but how it can reflect on the school, pupil, parents and community.
It is important to show respect to adults and pupils alike, regardless of their role, beliefs, culture or even your own values. We are all individuals and we need to respect and listen to other people’s views. There are many pupils and people working in the school but if you take the time and trouble to remember their names or how they liked to be addressed them already feel they are being treated like an individual and feel valued. As individuals we need to remember issues or aspects of their lives that may be important to them.
It is important to remember and celebrate for instance a child’s birthday. Positive attention demonstrates your interest and value you hold to that individual. Being considerate to people’s individual needs is important whether it is on a personal or work level. We all have times where we might have to deal with a stressful situation or are working to a tight deadline and by having a little bit of consideration and empathy helps develop positive relations. We need to demonstrate that we can actively listen, interact, show interest and value individuals.
Whether, individually or as a group, responding where necessary and appropriately. Being able to advise or confide or share information builds positive relationships with all concerned. Some situations can be extremely funny and is good for everyone to show that you have a sense of fun and humour, so long as it isn’t unkind or be undermining to individuals. We all need to be careful on how we communicate information. If we ensure that we clarify and confirm the main points of a discussion and outcomes desired.
Asking children particularly to repeat back what they are to do helps achieve the activity or learning outcome. Explain how different social, professional and cultural contexts may affect relationships and the way people communicate. We need to adapt the way we communicate with people to different situations or environments. If attending a meeting, whether it’s a staff meeting, meeting with other professionals or dealing with a parent we need to be more formal and conduct ourselves in a professional manner. The way we dress can completely send out the wrong impression if you are having a formal meeting.
Dressing smartly creates an impression that you will act appropriately and professionally and any input you have will be respected. It’s not only how we speak to people but it can also be reflected through our body language. We have to bear in mind that other people’s cultures may find some gestures offensive to them. Being respectful to their beliefs and cultures is important in maintaining positive relations. A raise of an eye brow or shrug of the shoulder can send the completely wrong message for instance to a parent when discussing an issue regarding their child.
However, communication and how it’s received is not just on a face to face level. How we respond to written or verbal communications by phone is also very important on how they are perceived. If you respond to an Email promptly, responding in a way that is clear and inoffensive the respondent will feel you have acted appropriately and considered their issue raised with importance. By phone although someone cannot misread any body language our tone and how we speak can form an immediate impression.
If you are clear to the point, without raising your voice, be respectful to the other persons point of view this will reflect on not only yourself but on how the school is viewed. Explain the skills needed to communicate with children and young people. Children are all individual but need adults to be good role models. It is important to establish and maintain effective working relationships with individuals and groups of pupils. Effective language skills are essential for children to access the curriculum. Take time to hear individual pupils express themselves and put their views across.
Some pupils are reserved and lack confidence in their abilities and with the dynamics of the class may have little opportunity to come forward. Ensure that all pupils have a chance to put their own views across, be patient, encourage and reassure where appropriate to the pupils needs. You need to demonstrate that you actively listen by interacting with the pupil, through eye contact and showing that you are interested and value what they have to say. Getting down to their level, rather than towering over them helps a child to feel less intimidated.
Your body language reveals a lot about how you communicate and feel about someone. A reassuring smile or kind expression can help put a child at ease. A comforting gesture or expression makes you more approachable and shows that you are interested in what they are saying. A high five is a great way to show praise and value their ideas making pupils feel relaxed and building up their confidence. Showing humour appropriate to the pupil’s level and the situation is also a great way to gain pupils trust and keeps a good rapour between you and the pupils.
Explain how to adapt communication with children and young people for: The age of the child or young person. Children develop at different rates depending on their ages so how you communicate with a younger pupil will be very different to an older pupil, as they are more likely to have matured and become increasingly more independent. Children that are in nursery or early years are likely to want more reassurance and physical contact. Many young children just want to hold your hand or they give you a hug which makes them feel safe and secure. The context of the communication.
When dealing with very young children you need to bear in mind that they have a short attention span so sound strategies are a good idea, like clapping a simple tune and getting the children to clap back in response or getting them to wriggle their fingers, toes etc. to release all their fidgets so they are more focused before they start on any learning activity. Young children are very inquisitive and may ask questions that an older child may consider inappropriate as they are more socially aware. A humoured and gentle response is an effective way to defuse an embarrassing question and not make the child feel upset or anxious.
It is healthy and part of growing up for a young child to ask questions this helps develop their confidence and social skills and should be welcomed and not squashed, but still maintain an appropriate relationship with the child. In a less structured setting like the playground children will still want to talk. This is a great way to build positive relationships and get to know individual children in a less formal way. By sharing likes and dislikes, what they like to do or where they went at the weekend helps build trust. There will be times when you will need to deal with playground disputes and whilst they ay seem trivial to you, all disputes need to be treated fairly, inappropriate behaviour dealt with in accordance to the rules and ethos of the school. Provide comfort and immediate care for minor accidents, upsets and ailments reporting problems when necessary to the relevant people. Communication differences. Pupils whose first language is different to that used to deliver the curriculum will need extra support, allowing them to go at their own pace without feeling under any pressure. You will respond to the pupil’s use of their home language in ways that values cultural diversity and promotes self-esteem of bilingual pupils.
Supporting children with speech and language delays or specific learning difficulties like a child who may be on the autistic spectrum, you will need to use the appropriate mode of communication, including additional visual, auditory, tactile or signing methods to help with communication. Allow them plenty of time and understand their individual needs. Communication may be more difficult for them but you should be patient, not try to talk for them, listen and respond to them on a level they understand so they feel valued and encourage independence.