Developing Language and Communication Skills through Effective Small Group Work: SPIRALS: From 3-8

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Taylor & Francis, Jul 20, 2010 - Education - 118 pages

Poor language and communication skills have been shown to have profound effect on the life chances of children and young people. Research tells us this consistently over the years. Now in its third edition, Developing Language and Communication Skills through Small Group Work provides essential information for practitioners working with linguistically vulnerable children. It is underpinned by an approach based on developmental psychology and brain based research. The book provides clarity and repetition of key concepts at a level that this particular cohort of children require. The book now includes a section on using the power of puppets to support communication. Feedback from practitioners is that it is not only fun to run the SPIRALS groups but also highly effective in providing the support the children need.

The SPIRALS language book contains a wealth of effective ideas for activities to support good practice to develop children’s speech, language and communication development. The most powerful way to use Spirals is as set out in the sessions as an ongoing programme. Although these activities can be used as stand alone ideas to target a particular area of concern. The sessions have been carefully designed to build upon children’s existing skills base. Small spirals of learning are introduced at a pace the children can access and retain.

SPIRALS supports good practice in early years settings and schools up to KS2. The aim is to develop effective language and communication skills which will underpin a range of critical thinking, reasoning and social competency skills as well as increased ability to listen, maintain focus and learn effectively. Also it has been shown that improvements in levels of spoken language can have a positive impact on written literacy.

Included in this book are:

  • concise explanations of the terms and concepts involved
  • clear guidelines for setting up and running small group sessions
  • structured lesson plans twelve for nursery and early primary years
  • photocopiable resources
  • lists of further reading and resources.

New to this third edition includes:

  • revised Early Years and Reception Year material
  • fully updated to reference the Bercow Report (2008)
  • new section on using puppets effectively
  • additional ‘bubble commentaries’ offering useful tips and suggestions to teachers.

This fully updated edition will be particularly useful for teachers, teaching assistants in early years and in schools, speech and language therapistsand assistants interested in the Spirals language development technique.

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About the author (2010)

Marion Nash currently focusing her Doctoral research on her professional interest in speech, language and communication needs. Marion provides training for Early Years settings, primary schools, speech and language therapy service teams, local authorities with 'I Can', the national speech and language charity.

Jackie Lowe is currently working with the 'I Can' nursery centre in Plymouth supporting children with specific language impairment.

Tracey Palmer is a highly experienced Primary School teacher who uses the SPIRALS technique to enhance literacy outcomes.

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