Lincoln Heights School

+64 9 833 7480 16 Keegan Drive, Massey, Waitakere City, Auckland, NZ
Lincoln Heights School
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Future Focussed Learning

Posted on 15 October 2017

How do we prepare our students for the future?

I am becoming increasingly concerned about the difficulty many of our children experience in sharing their ideas orally.  Our children are more frequently 'talking' to each other via text or messenger, than they are face-to-face. 

Younger children are spending increasing amounts of time connected to devices and watching media - either on TV or mobiles.  They are spending less time actually talking to other children or to adults.  Schools are seeing greater numbers of children referred to Speech Language Therapists for language delays (not knowing the words to use) than speech problems (not being able to say the words).

As a society we need to disconnect from social media and commit to spending time interacting with our children.  If we don't then we will run the risk that many will lose the ability to be able to confidently advocate for themselves or share their opinions as they become adults.

The vocabulary gap between children living in richer areas to those in poorer areas is vast.  'Richer' kids according to research are exposed to more language, more experiences, more books, more talking with.  Poorer kids just get less and are talked to.  Yet, in my experience they often have a raft of cultural and family experiences, they just come from more complex families, with potentially more children and less time.  

If we want to change this statistic, we need to find time to talk together, even if it is just for an hour over an evening meal or talking about an experience in a car ride.  We can encourage our children to have 'no media' time each evening and ask them their thoughts on things that are going on around them.  Even their thoughts on a favourite TV show or movie!

What do you think?  How can you make time to encourage your child to talk and develop their vocabulary?




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