The more I work with children the more I realize the importance of dropping what I know as an adult, and joining the child where they are at. This enables us to build trust with a child as they realize that we understand them and find enjoyment in the same little things they do. It is amazing how much we communicate through a laugh, smile and by looking at something with real intent. By these things we say, “I get you and I find this just as funny, exciting and/or scary as you do”.
Once we’ve done this then we’ve earnt the right to show them what we find funny, exciting and scary – like teaching them to speak, read or sing. You’ll be amazed by how much more they listen to you, once they see you are interested in so much more of them than just their areas for improvement.
So the next time your little (or now BIG) champion brings you a worm (or an iPad app), take a moment to put your most interested face and voice on – and choose to experience the worm and iPad app through the eyes of your child. Just wait and see what special moment you may capture through this simple act!
This term we’ve had lots of fun working in different environments and locations meeting our big and little champions right where they are at. Here’s some of us at the beach, with the leaf blowers and playing marbles!!
Written by Elise Swallow (Director of The Voice Within Speech Pathology)