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If you make eye contact with the adult or child you can draw their attention towards you. Calling out a child’s name will make them turn to face you so that you can talk to them. If you lower the tone of your voice and talking in a quiet calm manner, the adult or child would have to concentrate more to try to hear what you are saying and will also help calm an active child down enough to listen to you attentively. It’s also an affective method to calm an angry parent who is shouting and doesn’t want to hear what you are saying. You could also hold a child’s hands so they know it’s them that you are talking to.
You could adapt the surroundings, like taking a parent or child into an office to talk to them. If an adult is angry and is not listening to what you are saying, you could also let them have their say first so that once they have voiced their opinion they will be ready to hear what you have to say. Hearing impairment and speech impediments Using sign language and speaking clearly helps us to communicate with hearing impaired people, they can understand what we are saying through lip reading and the sign language will help emphasis that.
If people have speech impediments it is important to allow them plenty of time to speak, rushing them can make them nervous and make the impediment worse or stop them from communicating at all. Using flash cards is also another way of communicating, with children and adults that have hearing and speech problems. (see attachment) Behavioural problems and learning difficulties If a person you are communicating with has behavioural problems or learning difficulties it is important that you are patient with them.
Using simple language with people with learning difficulties help them to understand what you are saying. By identifying the problem then trying to understand it, you can find ways in which to adapt your approach to a way that they will understand you. If a child is hyperactive, trying to get them to sit down and hold a conversation will be difficult, but doing it through play is a way to hold their concentration. English not being the first language (ESOL) Using simple vocabulary will improve understanding and using body language and hand gestures help by emphasis what is being said.
A good way of communicating with parents/carers that don’t use English as a first language is by compiling a multilingual newsletter, where you can put across any information and not have miscommunication. You can also set up a buddy system with adults or children, where there maybe another child who is bilingual that can help translate. Shy or timid people Interacting with adults and children on a one on one basis helps to communicate with introvert people.
With adults this could be in the form of a meeting, and with children this can be through play. Circle time is another way of helping shy children talk, asking individuals questions or singing songs. Not getting on with colleagues or dealing with two faced people Holding staff meetings with a unbiased coordinator gives staff a chance to air their grievances and find a possible resolution to them. Team building exercises can also help people get along, through play with children to colleagues being put on a project together.
With children you can also reinforce club rules, and with colleagues you can reinforce policies. You can also used role play and read stories, giving children a different view on what they are doing wrong and see how treating their peers bad affects them. Not making time or effort to communicate Arranging meetings with staff or parents/carers will give enough notice for them to make time for a meeting. With children you can use circle time as an opportunity to have class discussions.