It has been said (Vygotsky, 1978) that a teacher will have most success when working within a child’s Zone of Proximal Development – that is, the area of understanding just beyond what the student understands but not too far away as to be unreachable. Teachers must understand this and opt for lessons that have no predetermined direction, but rather must remain conscious of the individual needs of each child and adapt their methods and resources to suit these diverse learners. Without this language development process knowledge, learning will not be optimised and some children are at risk of being left behind.
Talk serves many purposes in classrooms and teachers need to be aware of this if they wish to optimise oracy development. It’s paramount that they plan their communications more deliberately than other adults in order to provide the required supportive learning environment. This means considering their own cultural context and adapting to suit the needs of the child (Cazden, 2001). Comprehension of the language acquisition process will allow the teacher to make more conscious and deliberate decision...
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