Unit 7 :   Communication in health, social care or children’s and young people’s settings

1:1 Reasons why people communicate
Communication as a whole is very important for children. It allows them to make relationships and provides them with an opportunity to express themselves, share experiences, their needs and also their views.
Children need to communicate to express needs such as hunger, need for the toilet, thirst or just telling others how they feel.   It is important for children to express themselves and needs and also important for us as carers to listen.
Children use many methods of expressing their needs such as sign language, body gestures, makaton, making sounds. Another way they express their needs is through their moods e.g. if they are angry or frustrated that could mean they cannot figure something out such as a toy or puzzle or in most cases being hungry. The age group I work with are 12-20 months and some cannot speak well so they use different gestures such as pointing and/or simple words like ‘water’ or ‘food’.   Some use sign language to tell me what they need. Others point and make sounds and the older children use simple sentences like ‘can I have’ or say their name and what they want.

Recently we underwent a test where one member of staff from each room had to be silent for 2hours and all we could do was use sign and gestures. It was to show how frustrating it is for a child to express their needs when it was finished I felt very annoyed that I couldn’t express what I needed or what I had to say. Different age groups use different things like babies sometimes use different sounds and use a range of facial expressions to show what they want e.g. for hunger it is normally a low-pitched, rhythmic cry that repeats a pattern of short cry, brief pause, short cry, pause. When a child wants to share their ideas with you they may do it because they are proud of what they have thought about or seeking approval for the idea they have come up...