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Woodlands Primary

Promoting Language Through Quality Interactions

We continuously reflect on our interactions with children in Early Years to ensure we are meeting the needs of all children, beginning with a focus on listening and attention through fun and stimulating ‘attention bucket’ activities.

Promoting Language Through Quality Interactions

“adult-child interaction is not a static process, but a dynamic and fluid activity which is dependent upon the context and the child's needs.  There is not one way of interaction but many."

Fleet, M quoted in Dunkin, D, Hanna, P (1995) Thinking Together, Quality Adult: Child Interactions NZCER

We continuously reflect on our interactions with children in Early Years  to ensure we are meeting the needs of all children, beginning with a focus on listening and attention through fun and stimulating ‘attention bucket’ activities.  Through such activities we can introduce new vocabulary, model speech sounds in an engaging way, appropriate to a child’s current stage of language development.  We also use every opportunity through play to model and extend language by commenting rather than questioning, enjoying moments of sustained shared thinking with the children. 

By providing this range of one to one, small group and larger group activities, both adult-led and child-led, we can ensure that we are meeting the needs of those children who may find larger group times intimidating or may have English as an additional language, whilst ensuring we challenge those children who are ready to confidently share their ideas and engage in conversation.  Most importantly, we listen and we allow for ‘pauses’ so the children have time to process their thoughts.  When the children are ready we use Phase One Phonics which we believe is another tool in the language development ‘tool box’.  In the photograph below you can see children enjoying a game called ‘describe it and find it’ through which the children learn to extend their sentences.

"it's got a black tail and its got four legs and it’s got a long mane and hooves, neigh"

 "it has four legs and it’s orange and it has black stripes, raaaaa"

All the children laugh when Mrs Reed guesses incorrectly - essentially our greatest language acquisition tool is to make it Fun!