Early Years Training and Coaching Schemas are one of those things that divide practitioners, like fairies at the bottom of the garden. You either believe in them and are in absolute awe at how amazing they are, or you just don’t believe they exist. It’s really interesting when you discuss this with people and it’s extra exciting when a ‘non-believer’ suddenly says “That describes my key child exactly!!” But first of all, let’s explore what a schema is. Athey (2007) defines schema as ‘patterns of behaviour and thinking in children that exist underneath the surface feature of various contents, contexts and specific experience’ (page 5).
Teaching English to learners with Special Educational Needs (SENs) – Myths and realities ‘I know I have children with special educational needs in my class, I want to help them and we are supposed to promote inclusion, but I really am not sure how to do this’ Vera, primary teacher from Spain ‘Some of the children in my class are really badly behaved, they can’t sit still, don’t finish their work and are always calling out. I think they might have a learning difficulty, but I don’t know what to do’ Kris, secondary teacher from Poland
FAQ: Raising Bilingual Children Why want bilingual children? There are many reasons, but the two most common are: 1) The parents speak different languages (say, an American woman and a Turkish man). 2) The parents speak the same language, but live in a community where most people speak something else (say, a Korean couple living in the USA). In the first case, both the mother and father may want to be able to use their own language when talking to their children. This is the bilingual home situation.
How can parents and teachers best educate young children? What principles can both teachers and parents bring to the education of very young children? Gillian Craig, who was part of the Learning Time with Shaun and Timmy writing team, explains. As teachers and parents, we follow certain principles in our roles. MIT Brain Study: Back-And-Forth Talk Key To Developing Kids' Verbal Skills New MIT research finds that for children's brain development, parents don't just need to talk to their kids — it's important to talk with them, in back-and-forth exchanges. "What we found is, the more often parents engaged in back-and-forth conversation with their child, the stronger was the brain response in the front of the brain to language," said cognitive neuroscience professor John Gabrieli. Story continues below
The Brain-Changing Power of Conversation The Science Researchers used highly faithful audio recorders — a system called Language Environment Analysis (known as LENA) — to capture every word spoken or heard by 36 4–6 year olds from various socioeconomic backgrounds over two full days. The recordings were analyzed to measure the number of words spoken by each child, the number of words spoken to each child, and the number of conversational turns — back-and-forth exchanges initiated by either adult or child. Comparing those measurements with brain scans of the individual children, the analysis found that differences in the number of conversational turns accounted for differences in brain physiology, as well as for differences in language skills including vocabulary, grammar, and verbal reasoning. Read the MIT News story for a fuller summary of the research.
Practical tips By Opal Dunn, educational consultant and author Introduction Young children learn English differently from most adults. Most have an innate ability to pick up English while taking part in activities, by making sense of what they are doing and picking up the adult’s language that accompanies the activity. You can find out more in the British Council booklet ‘How young children learn English as another language’, also available on the parents pages of the LearnEnglish Kids website. Planned English sessions
How to help your child learn English with YouTube videos Tracey Chapelton, education consultant and materials writer, has some advice for parents of young English learners, whose home language might not be English. To learn a language we need a lot of exposure to it. YouTube is beneficial if you are not a fluent English speaker, and want a more fluent model of English for your child. The Art of Control Executive function — our ability to remember and use what we know, defeat our unproductive impulses, and switch gears and adjust to new demands — is increasingly understood as a key element not just of learning but of lifelong success. Researchers at the Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University describe executive function as an air traffic control system for the mind — helping us manage streams of information, revise plans, stay organized, filter out distractions, cope with stress, and make healthy decisions. Children learn these skills first from their parents, through reliable routines, meaningful and responsive interactions, and play that focuses attention and stirs the beginnings of self-control. But when home is not stable, or in situations of neglect or abuse, executive function skills may be impaired, or may not develop at all, limiting a child’s success in elementary school and later life.