“Spoken language development is important as the foundation to reading and writing"

James Clements        

Parents play an important role in supporting their child’s education.

The most important thing parents can do is to talk with their children and encourage them to think and express themselves. Research shows that children who are able to express themselves and construct an argument are better able to progress in other areas of learning such as reading and writing.

Talking to children helps them to develop social tools and to form relationships. This in turn builds self-esteem which supports mental health and emotional development. The more engaged children are, the more their communication skills will improve leading to improved socialisation and ultimately to success beyond the classroom.

Helping your child prepare for the oracy assessment
  • Engage with your child as s/he prepares for the oracy assessment by acquainting yourself with the requirements.
  • Students sometimes find settling on a topic for their Talk difficult. Discussion/brainstorming with a parent can assist a student clarify their ideas and decide what to speak about.
  • Younger students sometimes need assistance choosing appropriate poetry and prose for the assessment. They can be reminded of a book they read and enjoyed and be helped with choosing an appropriate passage.
  • Parents can encourage students to memorise their poem.
  • Parents can be a mock audience for their son/daughter to practise the Talk, Memorised Poem and Prepared Reading.
  • The final section of the assessment is Discussion with the assessor and listening group. Parents can help their child practise this section by asking open-ended questions (that do not elicit a yes/no answer) and probing questions (that seek to know more about a subject). The child should be encouraged to respond in full sentences.
  • Finally, parents are welcome and encouraged to attend the actual assessment to support and enjoy watching their child present with confidence.

Teaching your kids to read? Don’t forget to talk to them, too!

A study from Macquarie University has found that parents should actively be talking to their children as well as reading to them if they want to boost their literacy skills.  Read the full story

In The Early Catastrophe, published in the Spring 2003 edition of American Federation of Teachers, researchers Betty Hart and Todd R Risley establish the link between the number of words a child hears and their literacy development. https://www.canr.msu.edu/news/the_importance_of_talking_to_your_children