Developing Language and Literacy with Young Children (3rd by Marian Whitehead

By Marian Whitehead

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Additional info for Developing Language and Literacy with Young Children (3rd ed.)

Example text

Non-verbal communication, speaking and listening must be at the heart of all our provision for care and education in the years from birth to eight. ● Communication in early years settings is different from communication at home and places new demands on all infants and young children. ● Conversations with interested adults are essential to children’s linguistic, emotional, social and cognitive welfare. Children need the positive support of families and professionals. ● Early years carers and educators can learn more about their children by observing them and listening to them.

Personal narratives The need to record our own existence and make some mark in the world is at the heart of our personal memories and daydreams, as the stories at the start of the chapter indicated. The community, or cultural group, provides some helpful blueprints (Hughes, 1995) but individual narratives are about personal identity and the pleasures and difficulties of particular relationships. Researchers and scholars have built a very strong case for the claim that narrative is a primary function of the mind and the organising principle of memory (Hardy, 1977).

It follows that all early years settings must be organised primarily around communication, talk and play between children and adults, and between children and children. qxp 04/03/2007 11:06 Page 15 2 Young bilinguals The previous chapter contains many examples of early language collected from my own grandchildren – examples which are probably very similar to those heard in most English-speaking households and early years care and education settings. At this point I would like to complete the picture of the two older children, Natalie and Daniel, learning to speak, by filling in the details of the social, cultural and family setting which provided the backdrop for their language development.

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