Communication & Language

Communication & Language

Communication and Language

To develop, extend and enrich the skills of communication which the child has, in order to enable the child to function effectively as a member of society.

Communication and language permeate all areas of the nursery. The nursery as a whole is organised in order to promote and enhance development in communication and language and to promote positive images and role models for the children.

Learning will be achieved via a mixture of adult directed and structured free play activities, delivered through cross-curricular activities and topic based themes.

To provide a stimulating environment in which communication and language skills can be nurtured and developed. To provide visual, auditory and tactile experiences which will provide stimuli for all children.

The programme of activities will provide opportunities for the children to use, explore, and develop skills in verbal communication.

The activities will support the children in forming relationships with both peers and adults in their ability to interact with others, and in the expression of thoughts and feelings. The children will experience the spoken word as a means of conveying information, sharing and receiving of ideas, and as a means of gaining insight into the world of imagination.

To provide the children with opportunities to develop skills in listening in order to be able to process information, interact with others and begin to share in other’s feelings and thoughts.

The activities will help the children to develop imagination and aesthetic awareness, and to develop the ability to respond to their own experiences and those of others.

Operating Policy
The nursery will be organised in order to facilitate the development of the following areas of language:
•         Talking
•         Listening

A programme of activities based upon structured free play and staff directed work will be implemented and there will be opportunities for the children to communicate with peers, nursery staff, other adults and visitors to the nursery.

The children will also experience the use of gesture and expression as a means of conveying information. Where appropriate, the nursery staff will support children in developing alternative strategies (such as signing) as a means of communication.

For children whose first language is not English, the nursery will offer support and show respect for the home language and culture.

Where there are already significant delays in the development of language when a child starts nursery (as noted by parents, health visitor, doctor, etc) or where a child does not appear to be making progress (as noted by staff and parents) then the nursery will consult with outside agencies such as speech therapists or the educational psychologist in order to ensure that the child receives the support that he/she needs.
The programme of activities will help the children to develop an awareness of how language is constructed and the children will be encouraged to listen to and form sounds and letters.

Equipment will be carefully selected to represent the nursery’s commitment to equal opportunity and will provide positive images for all the children.

Programme of Work
The nursery will provide a wide range of opportunities and experiences through which language skills can be developed and promoted. These opportunities and experiences will be gained through a programme of activities based upon general and topic work. There will be a mixture of individual, group and adult directed activities which will be based upon structured play.

The programme will include some or all of the following types of activity:
•          One-to-one discussions.
•          Group discussions.
•          Role play.
•          Reciting poems as a group.
•          Singing nursery rhymes as a group.
•          Encouraging children to make up and tell stories based on pictures.
•          Storytelling followed by a discussion about the story.
•          Storytelling to individuals.
•          Storytelling to groups.
•          Sound lotto games.
•          ‘Sound Walks’ focusing on what can be heard on a street or in a park.
•          Giving the children simple instructions to follow.
•          Asking the children to listen for a particular character or event in a story.
Planning, recording, and assessment
Topic planning takes place on a monthly or half-termly basis. Activity planning occurs on a weekly or daily basis. The topic planning and activity planning sheets used by the nursery are laid out to identify each of the areas of learning in the ‘Early Learning Goals’ document. This ensures that communication and language are considered whenever a topic or activity is planned.

Planning also occurs on a weekly or daily basis whereby staff members select a specific language activity for the children to use during free play – there is a different activity out each day. Items are rotated so that all resources are used, providing broad experience for the children.

Staff are able to observe the children and records of such observations can be made on the children’s personal profile sheets or on activity record sheets. Samples of the children’s work which relate to communication and language are kept in the child’s individual folder as appropriate.

Assessment is carried out through a mixture of informal observation, interaction with the child, the use of the information on record sheets and discussion during regular staff meetings. The information gathered during the assessment process is then used for future planning of activities for each child. Information gained through recording and assessment will be shared with parents, other school staff and outside agencies as appropriate.