Recent Question/Assignment

Consider the following while planning your Final Project.
• Reflect on the experiences you’ve had carrying out the strategies that were presented throughout the course.
• Select one or two strategies that have made the greatest impact in your practice.
• Think about some people you might share this information with and how you might do it.
• You may want to consider sharing this information with a family, families, a colleague, or director(s).
• Create an original project of one of the following:
• A video demonstrating how you use one of the strategies in practice.
• An audio file describing the strategy, how it works, and what your experiences have been with it.
A handout or newsletter for families, written in simple language that explains the strategy, its importance, and its use, and provides simple examples that could be used in the home.
• An article, written in your own words, which includes a headline that identifies a specific strategy and the body of the article explaining the strategy and why it’s important.
• A PowerPoint presentation naming, defining, and giving specific examples of the strategy and how it is put into practice in an early childhood setting.
• A poster that highlights critical information learned from the course that can be displayed for colleagues, parents, and children to see.
Handout 9: Strategies for Promoting
Oral Language Development
Additional Strategies to Support Oral-Language Development:
• Talk with children often throughout the day - make this a daily priority.
• Take advantage of times when you can talk with a child one-on-one, such as during mealtime or settling down for a nap.
• Be an active listener - make sure you send signals (e.g., nodding, smiling) that show children you are listening to them and value what they have to say. If you’re too busy let them know by saying, “Give me a minute, I really want to hear your story...-
• Respond to what children say and expand on their message. Even if a child provides nonverbal cues such as pointing, grunting, or gesturing - respond to his or her attempt to communicate. For example:
Child - Points to blanket
Teacher - Are you cold? Here’s your blanket so you can cover yourself and get warm.
• Talk about your daily activities and routines. This will expose children to general language and vocabulary, which is important for aspects of their everyday lives.
• Tell and explain to children what they should do. Not only tell them what to do, but also be sure to explain why they should or not do something. Explain how things work, why you do things, why you ask them to do certain things (stated positively), etc.
• Talk about events of yesterday and tomorrow - go beyond the here and now talk of daily commands (e.g., Sit down) and management talk (e.g., Put that in the block center).
• Tell stories about things that have happened or that will happen to you. This can be done when you speak to a particular child or when you share with the whole group. Children love to hear funny stories that have happened to you or about funny things they’ve said or the group has done together.
• Engage in pretend talk or talk that comes from one’s imagination or past experiences.
Pretend talk is sophisticated talk that lays an important foundation for later literacy development because it has many parallels to written language.
• Encourage curiosity about words by:
• Praising children when they ask about a word they don’t know or when they let you know they do not understand something.
• Modeling questions and curiosity about words.
• Generating interest in words by reading books with interesting words or word play.
• Ask open-ended questions. These questions give children an opportunity to practice complex oral language. Closed questions can be answered in a single word, such as “yes- or “no” or naming of a person or thing and therefore limit children’s engagement with more complex use of language. For example:
When a child shows you a picture he has painted, consider saying, “Can tell me about your picture?” (open-ended question) instead of asking, “What did you draw?” (closed question).
Adapted from:
Bennett-Armistead, V. S.. Duke. N. K.. & Moses. A. M (2005). Literacy and the youngest learner Best practices for educators of children from birth to 5. New York: Scholastic. Inc.

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