Being a communicator
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A child explores and expands ways to use language.
- interact verbally and nonverbally with others for a range of purposes.
Educators focus on the following aspects of children’s learning:
- enjoyment and engagement in communicating and interacting with peers and adults
- ability to construct and clearly convey messages that exchange ideas, thoughts, questions and feelings
- vocabulary for describing experiences, sharing interests and communicating knowledge and understanding
- confidence to contribute ideas and experiences, share information or retell happenings
- use of different sentence structures to comment, ask a question, give direction or explain a relationship
- awareness that there are different ways to interact and communicate in particular social and cultural situations
- skills for listening and taking turns in conversations
- ability to attend to, interpret and follow directions.
Educators intentionally promote this learning, for example, when they:
- know about, recognise and support the development of children’s first language as well as Standard Australian English (SAE)
- work in partnership with first language-speaking colleagues, families, Elders and community members to support children’s language learning and traditional language heritage model language and encourage children to express themselves in their first languages and SAE
- respond sensitively to children’s efforts to communicate
- engage in conversations and interactions with children, that intentionally include open-ended questions, extension of ideas and labelling of unfamiliar concepts
- incorporate songs, jingles and rhymes that immerse children in the sounds, structures, patterns and intonation at every opportunity
- provide ample opportunity for children to speak and listen to first languages and SAE, for example, during group sharing times, routines and rituals, and throughout play
- respond to children’s attempts and approximations by repeating, modelling and expanding words
- contextualise shared texts, songs and rhymes to reflect children’s experiences in family and community
- use puppets, familiar artefacts, photographs, pictures and visual supplements to extend vocabulary and promote understanding
- use visual cues to support children’s understanding of verbal information, for example, stop, look, listen chart, pair of eyes or an ear, introduce new words during conversations, familiar routines and shared rituals
- provide games, dance and movement experiences that involve simple directions and instructions
- make explicit the speaking and listening practices used in group and social situations, for example ‘May I have a turn please?’.
Educators look for evidence of children’s learning, for example:
In the familiar contexts of family and community when children:
In new and unfamiliar contexts of an early learning program when children:
In the familiar contexts of a culturally secure early learning program when children: