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Developing the communicative competence and narrative thinking of four and five year olds in educational settings

By M. E. Wilde and Rosemary Sage


Children’s communicative competence is essential and predictive of their success in school. However, in England in recent years we have faced particular challenges inculcating this understanding into primary and early years teachers’ practice. Furthermore, some studies have raised concerns about children’s communicative competence on school entry. One implication of this is it is more difficult for children to make the shift between informal language and a formal mode where the use of narrative skills to process large quantities of talk and produce a coherent response is essential. Therefore, the aim of this research was to investigate how the narrative thinking and ability to communicate of a group of 13 four and five year olds could be developed further, using the Communication Opportunity Group Scheme as an intervention. Results indicate that the overall level of the group’s improvement in narrative thinking and communicative competence was statistically significant. Furthermore, it was found that this progress was more likely to be due to the conditions provided by the scheme than the children’s everyday educational settings

Year: 2007
DOI identifier: 10.1080/03004430600646409
OAI identifier: oai:lra.le.ac.uk:2381/1066
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