Conversations with Young Children (workshop)

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Course TypeCourse CodeNo. Of Credits
Foundation CoreSVS1EC3051

Semester and Year Offered: Semester-3, Monsoon 2018

Course Coordinator and Team: Fariha Siddiqui, Dr Sunita Singh and Sheetal Nagpal

Email of course coordinator:

Pre-requisites The course focuses on the job role of supervisor (Level-6) in an early childhood centre. The course is meant to be offered to those who have specific knowledge and skills related to Day care facilitator (Level-5) offered in 1st year respectively


The specific objectives of the course are to help students:

  • Develop skills of conducting activities with children.
  • Plan developmentally and contextually appropriate activities for children.
  • Develop skills of a supervisor in planning and conducting activities for engaging young children.
  • Understand children’s talk and converse with them.

Course Outcomes:

After completing the course, students will be able to:

  • Conduct creative activities related to music and movement, drama, art and science with children in a centre.
  • Demonstrate best practices to the facilitator
  • Demonstrate skills to resolve conflicts in children
  • Conduct early language, literacy and numeracy activities with young children in the centre
  • Develop the ability to evaluate activities/materials in terms of age and developmental appropriateness

Brief description of modules/ Main modules:


2.   Conversations with Children

As professionals engage with children all day long, it is also necessary for them to understand children’s talk and converse with them. In addition, young children may or may not express themselves explicitly.




Readings (suggested)



Conversational styles

  • Identify children’s conversational styles

Dickinson, D. K., & Tabors, P. O. (2001). Beginning literacy with language: Young children learning at home and school. Paul H Brookes Publishing.


Tenenbaum, H., Leman, P., Aznar, A., & To, C. (2016). Researching Children’s Conversations. Practical Research with Children, 89.



Goodwin, M. H. (1983). Aggravated correction and disagreement in children's conversations. Journal of pragmatics, 7(6), 657-677.


In class participation and attendance 20%


Short in-class assessments 40%


Term end Assessment 40%


Role of facilitators and supervisors

  • Identify the role of facilitators and supervisors in interactions.


Listening to children

  • Follow the child’s lead: observe, wait and listen, be face to face, imitate, interpret, comment, and join in and play.


Children as conversational partners

  • Help children become better conversation partners by asking appropriate questions, comments and turn-taking cues


Inclusive conversations

  • Ensure that no child is left out of the interaction during group activities


Conversations about health, safety and security

-   Sensitize children about:

  • Good touch and bad touch
  • Appreciating differences
  • Facilitating conflict resolution (withdrawal behaviour, tattling, fights)
  • Health and hygiene habits                   


Expressing challenges

- Explore ways to enable children to express themselves in problem situations