The Education Review Office (ERO) has released a report that it says reinforces how fundamental oral language development is in enabling children to learn.
The report, titled Extending their language - expanding their world: children's oral language (birth - 8 years), call for all teachers in early learning services and schools to have an increasing awareness of the importance of oral language.
According to ERO, research evidence shows early in a child's life is a critical time in terms of the rapid language development that takes place, particularly in the first two to three years.
The report investigated how effectively young children's oral language learning and development were supported in their early years of education.
“With good oral language skills children are more engaged in their learning and have more meaningful social interactions,” explains Sandra Collins, Senior Education Evaluator at ERO.
“Oral language development lays a solid foundation for our children to become lifelong learners in all areas,” she says.
ERO evaluates and reports on the education and care of children and young people in early childhood services and schools.
According to the organisation, ERO analysed data gathered from 167 early learning services and 104 schools to find out what early learning services and schools are doing in response to children's oral language learning and development, including concerns about and needs of particular children.
The report calls on educators to to have an increasing awareness in the following areas:
- understanding how oral language develops
- recognising the fundamental ways the curriculum can promote rich oral language learning
- the use of deliberate teaching strategies.
To read the full report, educators can go here.