Communication and language development

Communication and language is one of the seven areas of the early years foundation stage and is used to assess children's ability to speak, pay attention, listen and understand. Children do this in range of ways including, listening to stories, responding appropriately to what people say, by articulating and expressing their feelings and developing their own narratives and connecting ideas or events.

Below you will find a range of practical articles and expert features that cover communication and language development to help you develop these skills and overcome challenges you might encounter. For more information on the EYFS you can download latest version of the statutory framework here.

Latest Practical

Communication and language: Talking it through

This is the final article in the series introducing mindfulness, outlining creative activities which encourage children to express their thoughts and anxieties, collaborate and achieve a sense of calm.

Expressive arts and design: My Dad, the Star

Children will enjoy celebrating their dad or special male person by a creating a a unique ‘Avocado Dad’ or a ‘My Dad, the Star’ card. There is also a guide to making a beauiful ‘Me and My Dad’ bookmark.

PSED: At their command

While technology is not specifically covered in the revised EYFS it will feature in many everyday activities in your provision. In this first of a new series, Claire Hewson links Ipads and Bee-Bots to learning co-operatively.

Maths: Thrills and spills

In the first of a series exploring water play, Jenni Clarke suggests how to make the most of opportunities for joyful, spontaneous maths learning, by seizing ‘teachable moments’ and using observation to gauge progress.

Literacy: Make reading fun

The books of Dr Seuss are a fantastic springboard for children to practise repeating refrains and having a go at reading and writing rhymes and missing words. It's all about having ‘lots of good fun that is funny’.

Physical development: Write on

Build children's small muscle strength by exploring mark-making with different tools on different surfaces and see where the learning journey leads you.

Well versed

Rhyme is a fantastic medium for inspiring children to engage with narrative and develop vocabulary. Get into your own poetry rhythm by checking out these activities.

Latest Features

Profile: Howling success!

Karen Hart talks to children's author Kat Patrick and finds out how her latest picture book is all about encouraging young girls to not be afraid to express their feelings – as loudly as possible!

Focus: Mastering maths

Balance child and adult-led learning to build children's knowledge and skills.

Focus: Outdoor learning

Audit your space and take a fresh view on how to optimise its potential.

Creating a language-rich environment: So much to talk about

It's always good to re-visit and reflect on how the different areas of your provision are being used to support language and communication. Claire Hewson suggests ways to maximise the potential for conversations around the setting using staff as your most precious resource.

Communication and language: Develop your own approach

Sometimes children need extra help to support their communication and language skills. While this does not necessarily mean there is a long-term difficulty, a little extra support from a key person – in partnership with parents – will enable them to thrive.

EYFS reforms: In praise of creativity

The new EAD Early Learning Goals invite practitioners to optimise children's creativity through oral, aural, cultural and aesthetic expression – thereby enhancing their holistic well-being.

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