Language Development Interview

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Language Development Interview The following interview was conducted with Ms. Stephanie Smith who is a program director for Early Discoveries, a no-cost preschool program for at-risk four and five year olds. This is a program that is funded through the Virginia Preschool Initiative. Interview: 1. What is your level of experience, if any, of working with children that are experiencing language disorders or delays? A great portion of our students are dealing with some sort of delay or disorder. We have several that have been diagnosed with Autism, Intellectual disorders, and emotional disorders. So, I work with children who, on a daily basis, are struggling with language delays. It is estimated that roughly six to eight million people, in…show more content…
Do you have specific strategies and techniques that you prefer to use to promote healthy language development? We try to keep things like instruction and conversation with the kids simple and clear, this way they are able to follow those directions and understand what teachers need from them. We use a lot of positive reinforcement in the classroom also, through praise and enthusiasm over a job well done, the kids tend to respond with greater confidence in themselves. There are so many different ways to promote language skills for children in preschool. I do think positive reinforcement is a great tool for any age, I have definitely found that this works far better than focusing on what a child does wrong. Another great way to promote language skills is to find ways to facilitate peer interactions. By choosing and structuring activities that will require children to interact or work together teachers can actively foster these interactions (Wilcox, Murphy, Bacon, and Thomas, 2000). Children do sometimes seem to pick up language quickly when they are able to be more social with each…show more content…
Make the effort to create meaningful conversations: This is the optimal time to incorporate positive modeling so that children can have the chance to learn appropriate social skills, by watching parents and teachers in their daily interactions with others. On the same hand, interactions with children themselves are just as important. They will begin to open up and really express themselves when they see that others are truly invested in what they are saying. This all plays an important part in creating self-confidence and self-esteem. 2. Be sure that the environment is set up in a way that will support bilingual children: In diverse classrooms every child should feel that their own culture is valued just as much as their peers. Teachers can make the effort to use labels in the child’s native language or provide books for them, this way they can begin to feel secure in their new setting. This will provide needed support. According to the NAEYC when educators encourage a child’s home language in classrooms, as well as their literacy development, they are contributing to that child’s ability to learn English language skills (NAEYC,
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