1.3: Describe the potential impact of speech, language and communication difficulties on the overall development of a child, both currently and in the longer term.
Lack of confidence:
Throughout a child’s school life, as well as adulthood, individuals with SLCN will struggle to find confidence in a number of areas. Many children will come across as shy or timid, whereas they may actually be unable to say what they want to say through lack of understanding. Language barriers restrict a child’s opportunity to participate, and often leave them feeling unvalued or excluded. Without confidence, individuals will fail to become independent and possibly become reliant on adults or peers.
Due to the lack of skills needed, problem solving can become an extremely daunting task. Barriers that may seem easy to overcome (for most individuals) can cause children with SLCN a huge amount of anxiety and stress. Children will not be able to fully understand how to manage problems, where to go to, or how to explain what exactly is wrong. Instead, many problems will be left alone, creating a higher level of stress.
Dealing with emotions can be hard for everyone, but being able to communicate with others will often leave individuals with a sense of reassurance. Children with SLCN will find it harder to explain the emotions they are going through, and may not understand how to effectively manage their emotions as a consequence. As anxiety levels may be constant, children will often feel worried and nervous about situations. During adulthood, this may lead to stress and depression. Adults may isolate themselves which could have a significant impact on work, friendships and relationships.
Unfortunately, for some SLCN individuals, a lack of understanding can often lead to poor behaviour. Children, who find work too hard or confusing, can often allow their mind to wander, and become easily distracted. In turn, the child may cause distractions in lessons and seem to be behaving badly. The issue may be strengthened when the child is questioned and barriers prevent them answering confidently. Children struggle to stay on task and often leave work incomplete which may lead to further sanctions.
EYMP5-1.3: Describe the potential impact of speech, language and communication difficulties on the overall development of a child, both currently and in the longer term.
Children’s achievement will be greatly restricted as they will always find the work seemingly harder than their peers. Individuals with SLCN must be allowed time and space to complete tasks, and their instructions would be minimised to a level that they can understand. Due to the time management, they may have differentiated work patterns meaning that they are not completing as much work as their peers. Tests can cause huge amounts of stress and even for the brightest of students, a failure to understand questions as well as difficulties in managing emotions can lead to lower test scores.
Social impacts can include difficulties in friendships. Bonds between peers can become harder with SLCN children as they may not fully understand their role as a friend. Children may feel excluded from playtime activities and due to lack of confidence, decide to stay alone instead of participating. As children grow up, they will find it increasingly difficult to form friendships with children who are already in groups. During adulthood, this may not change. Adults may even fear employment, worrying that they do not have the social skills to bond with other employees.
In adulthood in particular, sustaining relationships can be a very stressful situation. A lack of understanding between two people can lead to a distance in thought processes. The worry and anxiety levels of adults with SLCN can often be extremely high, and instead of “failing,” they may be reluctant to even try. Adults can often argue, which again would be a difficult task to overcome for someone with language and communication barriers. Many adults may not realise, or fully understand, what they need to do to correct situations and maintain healthy and positive relationships.