Communication and Professional Relationships with Children Young People and Adults

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Unit Title: Communication and professional relationships with children young people and adults OCR Unit 1 1) 1. 1 Effective communication is important in developing positive relationships with children, young people and adults in all walks of life and at any age whether it be with relatives, friends, neighbours, colleagues, associates or even total strangers. Also, effective language skills are essential for children to access the curriculum. In the classroom, spoken language is the main way that teachers teach and children learn.

Therefore if the skill of communicating in an effective manner isn’t learned or grasped at an early age then it could lead to various complications in terms of interacting with other people, be it in the home or school, in the work environment and in the wider community. Good communication is also important because in my experience, when clear expectations and boundaries are established and you make your point as plainly and as simply as possible then that leaves no room for interpretation and this creates a positive learning or working environment.

In an environment such as this, healthy relationships can be nurtured between anybody. 1. 2 The principles of relationship building with children, young people and adults can be put down to the dispositions and attitudes of the people that the relationship is between. Relationships of any kind are best built on a foundation of trust and mutual respect if it is to develop into a healthy one. A calm disposition is required especially when dealing with behavioural issues conflicts or disagreements.

It is important to be open and approachable so that whenever you interact with someone, they feel at ease, valued and secure. 1. 3 Different social, professional and cultural contexts may affect relationships and the way people communicate because of a lack of understanding of one another’s background and/or culture. There are several behaviours that may be perceived differently by people of different cultures. These may include the way punctuality is viewed as in some countries like China and Japan, punctuality is considered important and being late would be considered as an insult.

However, in countries such as those in the Caribbean and Africa, being on time does not carry the same sense of urgency as the culture is a lot more laid back. The concept of “personal space” also differs from one country to another. In certain countries it is considered respectful to maintain a distance while interacting but in other countries, this is not so important. The way people speak is also a factor as the language or dialect of people from other countries or cultures is often integrated into the English language. If these differences are not understood they could cause barriers to effective communication. ) 2. 1 The skills needed to communicate with children and young people are those which promote a clear understanding between both parties. The ability to adapt how you interact is important because a child in year 6 would not be addressed in the same way that a child in reception would. An aggressive approach may incite an aggressive response which does not promote effective communication but a controlled, measured and firm approach (if needed) from a calm practitioner will more often than not do the trick in terms of positive communication.

Being a good listener is one of the most important skills you can have as this allows for a better understanding of what is being conveyed and it lets the speaker feel like they’re being valued. 2. 2 As I stated in 2. 1 the ability to adapt how you interact is important because a child in year 6 would not be addressed in the same way that a child in reception would as an older child in most circumstances would have better communication skills i. e. speaking, listening and understanding and could therefore be spoken to in a more mature manner.

A young child however only has basic communication skills so the way in which dialogue would be approached would have to be adapted to meet that child at their level. Also the context of communication needs to be considered as it first occurs and is developed within the family. Say for instance that a child is born in the U. K to parents of a different nationality or is brought up in a multicultural and diverse community where the use of the English language is influenced by many different nationalities then communication in a school setting would have to be adapted further to accommodate these variables. . 3 The main differences between communicating with adults and communicating with young people are complexity. When most adults share dialogue they can usually converse without being conscious about using synonyms and simple sentences to be understood whereas with young people communicating with simplicity becomes important if it’s going to be effective. Vocabulary is another difference to consider because adults tend to subconsciously communicate at the limits of their linguistic knowledge but with young people and children, vocabulary eeds to be tailored to meet them at their level. Adults can generally communicate effectively with each other with little or no detail through the use of body language and non-verbal gestures, however for a young person who is still developing their communication skills this mode of interaction may not be the most appropriate depending on the circumstance and setting. 2. 4 The need to adapt communication to meet different communication needs of adults depends on factors such as age, culture, nationality, ethnicity and disability.

For example, communication with an adult who had a hearing impairment may require clear, concise speech, sign language or something as simple as a written note. Also, for communication with someone from another country we would have to consider using an interpreter if speaking clearly with simplified vocabulary alone wasn’t enough. 2. 5 Managing disagreements between children, young people and adults requires one to have a good level of judgement and fairness to promote the most suitable outcome for all.

Where children are concerned, resolving conflict may require the mediator to explain exactly what one child has done to another as, at a young age, a child may be oblivious to any wrongdoing. With young people, issues are usually resolved by getting them to take responsibility for their actions and understanding the effect that negative behaviour can have on those around them. Managing disagreements between adults can be a lot more complex then dealing with children as there can be many variables to consider depending on the disagreement.

One option may be for both parties to talk through their issues to find a resolution or come to some sort of compromise. In some cases the only outcome is for those involved to agree to disagree. 3. 1 Adults who work with children in any setting need to have some idea about current legislation, as this will affect their practice. There is an increased awareness of how important it is to recognise the uniqueness of each child and have respect for their human rights. Legislation is an area which is constantly under review and you will need to keep up to date through reading relevant publications.

Every Child Matters (England 2005) based on the Children Act 2004. This Green Paper stresses the importance of more integrated services and sharing of information between professionals. It came into being after the tragic case of Victoria Climbie, when there was no communication between health and social workers. Data Protection Act 1998. In schools we ask parents and carers for a variety of information so that we are able to care for children as effectively as we can while they are with us.

However, we can only ask for information which is directly relevant like medical information or records from a previous school or an SEN file. This is confidential information and must be used only for the purpose for which it was gathered. If the information needs to be passed on to others for any reason, parental consent will need to be given. This usually involves parents signing a consent form. Under the Data Protection Act 1998, any organisation which holds information on individuals needs to be registered with the Data Protection Commission.

This is designed to ensure that confidential information cannot be passed on to others without the individual’s consent. You will need to be aware of a range of information in your role as a teaching assistant, from issues around the school to the individual needs of the children with whom you work. You should know how and when to share any information you have access to. If you are at all concerned or unclear about whom you can speak to, your first point of contact should be your line manager, or in the case of children with special educational needs (SEN), the SENCO.

Many teaching assistants working in schools are also parents of children at the same school, and other parents may sometimes put pressure on them to disclose information. You should not pass on any information about the school or the children before being certain that this is the correct thing to do. If you pass on information without following the correct channels, you will be abusing your position of professional trust and this can be very damaging. You should also be very careful if taking photographs for displays or if filming children for any purpose; again, parental permission will need to be given for this.

You should not take pictures of children for your portfolio. 3. 2 When you are party to gathering information, whatever this is, you may sometimes be in a position where you need to reassure others about the fact that it is confidential. 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.

However, if there are any issues to indicate that the child is at risk from harm or abuse, or if there is a legal obligation placed on the school to disclose information, this can be done There may also be cases where information on pupils needs to be accessible to all staff, for example, where pupils have specific medical conditions such as asthma or epilepsy. 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 staffrooms or dining areas, for example, and remove them if the premises are used by others during the evening. 3. 3 If you find yourself in a position where another individual confides in you, it is important to remember that there are some situations in which you will need to tell others. This is particularly true in cases of suspected child abuse or when a child or young person is at risk. You should at all times tell the individual that you will not be able to keep confidentiality if they disclose something to you which you cannot keep to yourself for these reasons.

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