Interacting or Interfering? Improving Interactions in the Early Years

© 2016
by Julie Fisher

1st Edition 248 Pages Book
9780335262564 0335262562
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  • Description
  • Table of Contents

High quality interactions are recognised as fundamental to the achievement of outstanding teaching and learning in the early years.  If you are working with children from six months to six years this authoritative new book from leading author Julie Fisher encourages you to reflect deeply on the quality and impact of interactions in your setting.

Drawing on research undertaken in baby rooms, nurseries and classrooms over four years the book challenges prevailing orthodoxies and offers specific practical guidance on how to improve the quality of interactions on a day-to-day basis. With its illuminating examples, the book shows how you can best tune into and respond effectively to young children's conversations.  It exemplifies how interactions are most effectively sustained and how developing high quality interactions can better scaffold and support children's learning and development.

'Interacting or Interfering?'

? Identifies the key components of effective interactions and how implementing these can improve the quality of children's learning
? Contains transcripts of interactions from baby rooms through to Year 2 classes which exemplify key messages
? Provides prompts you can use to analyse and improve your own practice


Written in the author's exceptionally clear and accessible style, this book is indispensable reading for all students and practitioners working and studying in the early years.

"There is a tendency for adult talk to dominate nurseries and schools in an attempt to manage, organise and interrogate children's learning; this closes down children's own investigation and capacity for thought. Fisher points out how `the very act of "being an educator? can sometimes distort the nature of an interaction so much that it inhibits the very learning it is trying to promote?. In this timely, thought-provoking and very readable book she prompts us to think more deeply about interactions and adapt new strategies to encourage all young children to engage in meaningful and enriching talk."
TACTYC, March, 2016

"The prompts and points for reflection encourage practitioners to critically consider their role and function, noting where their work is affirmed and where there is scope for further development ... This book is both relevant, though provoking and extremely useful for all involved in early childhood - an excellent tool for professional development."
Marion Dowling, Early Education Journal, No 79/ Summer 2016
 

1 The importance of interactions for young children's learning 
Introduction 
Different definitions of `effectiveness? 
Interactions in the home 
Why interaction matters 
Why interactions matter to children entering school 
Why interactions matter to practitioners 
Summary 

2 Interacting with babies and toddlers 
Introduction 
The foundations of interaction
The development of interactions 
Summary 

3 Knowing the child well 
Introduction 
Focus on babies and toddlers 
What practitioners need to learn about children 
The importance of the Key Persons Approach 
The impact of knowing children well 
Talking to someone and not everyone 
Analysing your own practice 
Transcripts: knowing the child well 
Transcripts 3:1; 3:2 
Summary 

4 Environments conducive to conversation 
Introduction 
Focus on babies and toddlers
Emotional space 
Physical space 
Analysing your own practice
Transcripts 4:1; 4:2 
Summary 

5 Tuning in to the child 
Introduction 
Focus on babies and toddlers 
The child as a learner 
Strategies for tuning in to children 
Working out what a child is thinking is more valuable than looking at what they are doing 
Deciding when and whether to interact can be the difference between interacting and interfering 
Analysing your own practice 
Transcripts 5:1; 5:2 
Summary 

6 Who leads the learning? 
Introduction 
Focus on babies and toddlers
The benefits of learning alongside an adult and learning independently 
Independent learning is not abandoned learning 
Interactions in adult-led, adult-initiated and child-led contexts 
The purpose of an interaction 
The balance between adult-led and child-led learning 
Who leads the learning? 
Analysing your own practice 
Transcripts 6:1 to 6:4 
Summary 

7 Sustaining effective interactions 
Introduction 
Focus on babies and toddlers
Initiating conversations 
Sustaining interactions 
Consolidating, extending and provoking thinking 
Analysing your own practice 
Body language 
Analysing your own practice
Tone of voice 
Transcripts 7:1 to 7:7
Analysing your own practice  
Summary 

8 Interacting with children who might not want to interact 
Introduction 
Focus on babies and toddlers 
Reluctant talkers 
Children with autism 
Children with English as an additional language (Eal) 
Signing as a form of communication 
Analysing your own practice 
Transcripts 8:1; 8:2 
Summary 

9 Questions that work and questions that don?t
Introduction 
Focus on babies and toddlers
Why do we ask questions? 
Who asks the questions? 
Transcripts 9:1 to 9:6 
Different types of questions 
Using questioning as control 
Children's answers 
Questions that work and questions that don?t 
Alternatives to questioning 
Analysing my own practice
Transcripts 9:5 to 9:6 
Summary 

10 The attributes of effective practitioners 
Introduction 
Focus on babies and toddlers 
The attributes of effectiveness 
The importance of reciprocity 
Interacting not interfering 
Analysing your own practice 
Transcript 10:1 
Summary 

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