speaking and listening skills

Speaking and Listening

This week in Literacy class we covered speaking and listening. We thought about all the situations during the school day that the child would need their speaking and listening skills. From the first time knowing where to put things and where to go, deciding and communicating what they want for dinner, taking the register, following rules, sharing/getting along with peers, asking to go to the toilet, in all lessons (reading/maths/PE, etc) – to pretty much all of the day. We then thought about all the things required for good speaking and listening skills.

speaking and listening skills

Good Speaking and Listening Skills

  • Speak clearly, at a pace that the other person can understand.
  • Use the right tone of voice.
  • Make sure that you have good eye contact – this will also ensure that non-verbal communication cues can be picked up.
  • Use NVC – most language is read through our body/facial actions (this is why it is harder for children on the Autistic Spectrum to communicate).
  • Respect the speaker – give them nods/smiles/say yes (at appropriate times) to show that you are listening. Do not interrupt. Do not have inappropriate responses (laugh when it is serious). Do not fidget or fiddle.
  • Ask relevant questions.
  • Ask for clarification/repetition of anything you did not understand or could not hear properly (do not do this too many times!)
  • Have patience and think before you speak.
  • Give the listener time to process the information – those on the spectrum may take longer to digest the information.

Developing Speaking and Listening Skills

The best way to help my Sensory Seeker to develop his speaking and listening skills is to just simply spending time with him – talking. We did two activities – the first was for him to draw a picture without me seeing it, then we had to talk to each other about it and for me to draw it (without seeing it). We sort of did this but he struggled with not showing it me, as he didn’t really understand that concept. Then we made a junk model together. He did a great job of discussing with me what he wanted to do, materials used. He absolutely loved what we created together and used lots of language to tell others about it. My boys really do seem to like “show and tell” sessions at school too. I think if they are passionate about something (especially if they are on the Spectrum) they find it easier to talk about.

speaking and listening

I am really enjoying this course together, and I was delighted when he told  me it was Monday (the day we do it). His face really lights up when he sees me come to collect him for it, and it has shown me how much I underestimate what he can do. We have homework too – finding the letters of his name in the newspaper, finding the score of his name in Scrabble, a punctuation hunt, a visit to the library – and lots lots more suggestions.

13 thoughts on “Speaking and Listening

  1. At the moment my son has been having some difficulty in getting his thoughts across and has been having tantrums like i’ve never seen before. These skills have given me something to think about, thank you, such a great post #magicmoments

  2. Joy, hi.
    I’ve just come across your blog and would just have read through it and remain quiet, but there’s one thing I’d like to thank you for – reminding me of one of the things I forget sooo often: “Give the listener time to process the information” 🙂 I believe this is something we adults forget about when talking to toddlers (not applying only to dealing with sensoy processing disorder). Thanks 🙂

  3. It sounds like such a good course and I’m glad you’re liking it. Some of the tips would be great for adults in just day to day life too. I talk way too fast and always need to slow it down’

  4. The model looks fab and it sounds like your son really got a lot out of the activity. Love the sound of them all actually, the letter / newspaper one sounds so effective yet simple.

  5. I am sure that he really appreciates the time to you spend together too – and learning new things as a partnership is always fun for kids. Well done Joy, sounds like you’re learning loads x

  6. Hello there, these are great activities and the model is fantastic! I agree with one of the other commenters in that I think they would suit all children, lovely x #magicmoments

  7. This sounds like a wonderful course, and it’s lovely that it’s something you can do together. Lots of great communication tips there that I suspect we could all use sometimes! It sounds as if your son is getting lots out of it too x

Comments are closed.