Language and Communication

Language and Communication as a Tool

Language is an essential part of identity, providing a key means of self-expression, enabling us to form relationships and bonds, to communicate needs and express our desires.  Language helps to support the child's learning in other areas of the kindergarten life including social skills, as well as the ability to focus, take turns, problem solve and follow directions. It provides a way for the child to express themselves and to reflect, to be understood, as well as the ability to read emotions and understand cues, forming the base for future learning.

Being able to communicate, to be able to speak to those around you and to be understood is a basic need. When there are communication barriers or we feel misunderstood, it is common to feel uncertain or frustrated. This is very usual when the first language is different to the new language spoken at the kindergarten, and can lead to feelings of insecurity, loneliness, low self-esteem, or exclusion.  How these insecurities are expressed varies, for some children it may result in the child retreating, and shying away from interactions, for others it may develop into anger or resentment.  

Language and communication cover far more than just spoken word. Think about the many different ways you can say the simple phrase “you are going”.
Your child will receive a range of different messages from the following:
• “You are going!”
• “YOU are going”
• “You ARE going”
• “You are going?”
From the simple change of tone and emphasis we can derive four completely different meanings from the same three words. What other aspects of communication can you think of in interaction with a child?