Communication and Professional Relationships with Children, Young People and Adults
TDA 2.3 Communication and professional relationships with children, young people and adults.
Section 1 (links to assessment criteria 1.1, 2.1 and 2.2)
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1.1 Describe how to establish respectful, professional relationships with children and young people.
Establishing a good relationship with all the children it’s of great importance. In my opinion, listening, it’s one of the most efficient ways in with to establish a respectful and professional relationship with children. You have to give to the children full attention when listening to them. Using body language, facial expression, speech and gesture helps a lot achieving this goal. The process of listening, without interruption, to what the children has to say, shows them that you are interested in what he wants to say , in their views, opinions related to an event, and encourages them to interact with you.
Another key of importance it’s to treat all the children as an equal. The teacher must not make differences between the children. You have to show the same interest to all of them, to treat them with love and deduction. For example, finding out about some of their interests and hobbies will also show them that you are really interested in. Learning all the children names, how to spell them and how to pronounce them it’s an effort to be taken in order to establish a good communication between. Professionally this is very important; being able to put a face to a name will ensure the child’s safety.
Fairness it’s another point to be considered. Children have a great respect for fairness; ‘it’s not fair’ is a common phrase in the classroom.
In order to be fair in a classroom situation, you should allow the children to explain their version of events; again this shows that you are willing to listen to them carefully. However it is important to be consistent in situations, if two children break the same rule it would be unfair to punish one and not the other, this would result in lack of respect from the children. It would also be unfair if you were to show favouritism, like letting your ‘favourites’ get away with things that you would punish other children for.
The teacher it’s a role model for the children. Children always have stories to tell and being interested and polite shows them that you have listened to them. Being polite not only shows respect but as an adult being polite is a good role model for the children. Children mimic the behaviour of adults, if you are polite, honest, fair and respectful to children there is more chance that they will be act the same towards you. (Kamen 2012)
‘’Research has found that, when we communicate face-to-face about our likes and dislikes, only 7% of the meaning is conveyed by the words we use. 55% is conveyed by our facial expressions and other body language. 38% is conveyed by our tone of voice.’’ (Mehrabian 1971 pg2)
2.1 Describe how to establish respectful, professional relationships with adults
2.2 Describe the importance of adult relationships as role models for children
The support needed to be given to other adults has several levels known with the acronym PIPE. Let’s take and explain them one by one. Practical: the practical part consists in giving support and help during the class hours. You may be working with adults who are unfamiliar with the classroom or school surrounding that needs help or advice finding equipments or resources.
Informative: you may need to give support to people who may not have the right information about a particular situation, or you may be asked to prepare or write reports on specific pupils. Professional: you may need to support or help others with things such as planning or you may be asked if others can observe you while working with students. Emotional: giving emotional support daily to children or adults it is very important; giving support to others through day-to-day events by keeping a sense of humour help them feel safe and more confident in themselves.
If others, in these case adults, feel more comfortable in our company, are more likely to communicate effectively, building, in this way a good relationship in any situation and occasion. If people don’t get along or feel uneasy around each other they tend to avoid each other whenever possible and so relationships don’t develop. Positive relationships don’t happen by chance they need to be thought about and ways to develop them need to be considered.
When working as a professional adult with children and young people you need to remember that you should be a positive role model for the pupils. This means you have to show them how to relate to and communicate with others at all times through your interactions and relationships with other adults and children. While in school, it is also important that they see you behaving professionally and appropriately. You build relationships with other people in school on a daily basis in numerous ways.
If the child sees politeness and good manners they are more likely to do the same. It is important for the adults to set a good example to the children. Communicating with children, young people and adults in an educational environment is an important part of a professional relationship. It happens that the school ethos may not be in line with the ideas held by parents and this may cause disagreement or conflict. However this should be seen as an opportunity for adults to discuss and agree on what is best for the pupil.
(Burnham, Baker 2010)
Section 2 (links to assessment criteria 3.1 1.2 3.2)
3.1 1.2 Describe with examples how communication with children differs across different age ranges and stages of development and how to behave appropriately for a child or young person’s stage of development.
Each child has a different way of learning. The teacher must be able to communicate and interact with each child regardless of their learning abilities and age. Communication can differ among different ages and stages of development; the younger children may have difficulties such as speech problems which in older children this may have already been noticed and addressed.
Communication can be divided into 4 (four) different categories: Verbal, non-verbal, formal and informal. The levels of attention when communicating with others differ according to the age of the children. Younger children, as they have just started school need more assistance and support in order to make them feel safe and comfortable. As children grow up and become more mature they need more help when discussing about issues or reflecting on their thoughts and opinions. You need to remember to adapt their vocabulary according to the age ranges, as well as consider repeating what you have said when speaking with younger children to make sure they understand what you have talked about.
When they start school they will learn with phonics that help them to learn to read and write, in schools now there are many children and young people who don’t have English as their first language so learning has to be adapted for their needs. In early years at school they concentrate on phonics, numeracy and literacy this helps them develop their language and mathematical skills and
( Burnham, Baker 2010)
3.2 Describe the main differences between communicating with adults and communicating with children
The communication with adults differs from the one with children. The first difference
Is that adults are able to process information much more quickly and effectively than small children and young people do. When speaking to small children and young people you must use precise instructions so they understand what you want them to do. When speaking to adults sometimes we use sarcasm but small children and young people do not understand sarcasm and they will not react good to it. When you listen to young children you have to look them straight in their eyes smiling in order to give them confidence, but when listening to adults you have to be serious, only listening carefully to them. Adults have to understand that you are a professional teacher and not their friend. Sometimes you have to raise our voices so I can be heard or to get your point across but when dealing with children that is not always the best way, if you want them to do something it is better to ask them calmly, smiling and with a positive attitude.
Section 3 (links to assessment criteria 3.3, 3.4)
3.3 Identify examples of communication difficulties that may exist
3.4 Describe how to adapt communication to meet different communication needs
There are many different communication needs within a school, for example hearing and speech difficulties and ESOL (English speakers of other languages), They will all need extra help as people with hearing problems will require one to one as they may use sign language or lip reading the TA may need special training for this, you can also use picture cards or write things down.
It may be easier for someone with speech problems to practice writing them down first before trying to say them and listening to someone else pronounce them first to help. With people who have English as their second language it will be more beneficial if they hear someone speaking the words to help with their pronunciation. When helping someone with anything whether they have difficulties or not it is important to speak slower pronounce things accurately and be patient.
When working with children you may find that areas of difficulty arise time to time. In this we can include:
• Poor communication
• Cultural differences
• Different ideas
• Individuals with special needs
• Lack of confidence
In order to meet the need of every child or adult whom you are speaking to, you have to adapt your method of communication. It is very important to be sensitive to the needs of other adults, in particular with them who have communication difficulties. We often change the way we react to others depending on the way they react to us. For example if you are speaking to a parents who is hearing impaired, you might make sure that you are facing them and giving eye contact so they can lip-read. If a child or an adult is deaf or hard hearing you have to use facial expressions and hand gestures. You have to speak slowly and use sign language.
1.3 Describe how to deal with disagreements between children.
Disagreements quite often take place during the brakes and lunchtime, but aren’t excluded the cases when they may occur during the learning time. When managing arguments, you will need to make sure that you go back to the beginning and find out exactly what has happened. It is really important for children to feel that they have been heard and to put their point of view across. Children also need to be able to understand how their own feelings might affect their behavior and you may need to talk to them about this. It is a good way for you to get familiar with your School Behaviour Policy.
Some of the steps that we can follow in our behavior policy are:
1. Approach calmly and with an open mind-Walk over and get down to their level.
2. Gather information from both sides-Say “What’s the problem? “Restate the problem. Say “so the problem is…”
3. Ask for solutions and choose one together-Say “I wonder what we can do to solve the problem/help you feel better?”
4. Be prepared to give follow-up support-Keep an eye out for what happens next and give further support if needed.
( Setting Behaviour Policy 2017)
3.5 Describe how to deal with disagreements between:
– The practitioner and children
– The practitioner and other adults
Dealing with disagreements between children it’s very challenging as children in this age are very sensitive and they can being crying even for small things.
In setting as a TA we must diffuse any disagreements between children. The majority of these disagreements take place in the playground over toys. The best way to deal with this situation is to be calm and speak to each of them in order to explain what happened. Doing this we transmit to them serenity and confidence as well show them that we do not take sides. There are often fallouts in the playground over who had a certain toy first, as a TA I would say that the child who had it first could have it for 5 more minutes, and then it would be the other child’s turn. In my setting if a child does not do as they are told they will get a warning and if they continue misbehaving they will get a verbal warning, if he still misbehave then they will be put on a stage. This will then be reported to the parents at the end of the day. If dealing with a disagreement between myself and other adults I would try to diffuse the situation by remaining calm seeking advice from a member of staff and I would also speak to the head of the school to find of what the complaints and grievance procedures are for that school. You would not necessarily need to use the procedures but it would be useful to know for future reference.
When dealing with disagreements with adults you need to have a different strategy. As this age group is strong willed, most of them have their strong views and ideas and of course they have a personality by themselves. You should encourage them to discuss over these disagreements and to come to a mutual solution. The adults have to listen to each other and learning to accept as well as respect other views. At the end they will realize by themselves what is wrong and what is right.
1.4 Describe how own behaviour could
– promote effective interactions with children
– impact negatively on interactions with children
In setting body language is the first thing a child notices about the TA. Children can tell when there is something wrong. It can be off putting for a child if they are worrying whether they have upset the TA or not. If you are smiling they are smiling they can also tell when it’s not a genuine smile too, so never try to force one. -Impact negatively on interactions with children and young people Again a child can tell if you are genuinely in a good mood or not, if they are picking up on the TAs mood then it can impact hugely in a negative way as they might not want help form the TA and this could put them behind with their work and get them into trouble with the teacher.
Section 5 (links to assessment criteria 4.1, 4.2 and 4.3)
4.1 Identify relevant legal requirements and procedures covering confidentiality, data protection and the disclosure of information.
• Data Protection Act 1998
• Human Rights 1998
Under the Data Protection Act, any personal information obtained on children within the school must meet strict confidentiality rules. The purpose of gaining the information must be established. It must be stored so as not to allow any third party access, this should include securing hard copies in a locked office or password protecting information kept electronically.
If a parent gives me information about a child, I should ensure this is recorded correctly and following school policies, passing it on to the relevant member of staff as soon as possible.
If information needs to be shared with other staff or agencies it must be done through the correct channels, parent consent in most instances will be required. Where a child protection concern is raised, information will be passed on to the Head teacher or Designated senior person to take charge. Sharing of any information between staff members will be done on a “need to Know” basis.
It is important to reassure children, young people and adults that any information will be kept confidential in order to gain and maintain their trust and confidence. As a member of teaching staff it is important not to violate this trust or put them at risk of harm by divulging personal information to others. However, in the case of child protection it my have to be explain to the disclosing child / adult that the information they are giving you, will have to be passed on the the relevant senior person and the reasons behind this.
We have clear guidelines about the disclosure of information. When discussing pupils with others, we should make sure that you only share information that they need to know and are entitled to know. If a person is unsure about whether to pass on information to others, it is always best to wait and to check before doing so. There may be some instances where information on pupils needs to be accessible to all staff, for example, if a pupil has a specific medical problem such as asthma or epilepsy. There should be an agreed system within the school for making sure that the entire staff are aware of who these pupils are. Some schools put photographs of the pupils in staffrooms and dining areas.
• When disclosing information we must make sure that we:
• Ensure that what we say is complete and accurate.
• Be sure that we are clear about the information that is passed on.
• Make sure that when disclosing any information that it is done in an appropriate environment where people won’t over hear.
• Repeat back to check what has been said.
• Always follow school policies for passing on information.
• Report any breaches of confidentiality to the appropriate person.
• Be adequate, relevant and not excessive
The school keeps a certain amount of confidential information on pupils and adults and this means that information and records that we have access to as part as our role as a teaching assistant must only be used for the intended purpose. It is important when updating information; we do not provide opportunities for others to gain access to it.
4.2 Describe the importance of reassuring children and adults of the confidentiality of shared information and the limits of this
4.3 Identify the kinds of situations when confidentiality protocols must be breached
It is of the absolute importance that children, young people and adults are reassured of the confidentiality of shared information as if they feel that what they tell people is going to become common knowledge then they will be reluctant to tell anyone, this could lead to things been missed and someone getting hurt. Children, young people and adults need to be aware that things will remain confidential within reason, sometimes confidentialities have to be broken if someone ids in immediate danger or there are reports of abuse.
If you attend meetings or need to be told about confidential items you should make sure that you let others know your obligations. In most cases, parental consent would need to be given before any information about children can be shared with other professionals
There may also be cases where information on pupils needs to be accessible to all staff, for example, where people have specific medical conditions such as asthma. In this case there should be an agreed system within the school for making sure that all staff are aware of these pupils. Some schools may display photographs of them in staff rooms for example, and remove the photographs if the premises are used by others.
If you find yourself in a position where someone confides in you, it is important to remember that there are some situations in which you will need to tell others. This is particularly in cases of suspected child abuse, domestic violence or when a child is at risk. You should at all times tell the individual that you will not be able to maintain confidentiality if they disclose something to you which you cannot keep to yourself for these reason.
(Burnham, Baker 2010 )