There are many different types of communication that we use in everyday lives but within in the health and social care sector we tend to use a lot more different types. The reason for this is because to have to try and communicate with everyone not just the people you know. You need to able to receive and pass on information clearly and make sure that it has been understood. It is also important that people are relaxed and at ease, when talking to you, so they can tell you what is really bothering them. I’m going to look at four of the different types of communication and see how it relates to my work placement.
The first form of communication that everyone uses is one-to-one spoken conversations, which is when two people are talking to each other. On my work placement I saw many examples of one-to-one with both the children and the staff. An example of this is when I didn’t understand something I had a one-to-one conversation with one of the staff and they helped me to understand how things worked in that nursery or what I needed to do. This type of communication is very important because it allows you to pass on instructions directly.
Your focus is completely on the other person and it is easy to find out through questions, if the instructions or information has been understood. It also allows concerns to be raised and discussed privately. It can be time consuming if there are a number of people that you need to talk to on a one-one basis, but it is useful for getting tasks within a workplace done. It also helps you to get to know the person. While I was at my work placement I tried to engage and communicate with both the staff and children on a one-one basis as much as I could.
This allowed me to find out what people thought of the nursery, the activities and the children’s personalities. Many of these views were quite subjective and personal, which makes it difficult to discuss them within a group While I was at my work placement, two children started to fight over a toy that one of them had brought from home. Each claimed that it was theirs. I had to separate them and talk to them individually about what had happened and who the toy really belonged to. This helped to break up the fight and allowed each child to tell their story without being interrupted by the other child.
This allowed me to find out who the toy really belonged to and diffuse the fight. The second type of communication that people used is using artwork and any forms of it, not many people think it’s a communication because they think its just art. However art is a good way to show how you feel so when children are young it’s good for them to do art. The reason for this is because it will give them a way to let their feelings out, instead of using violence. They might also not have the language to be able to express what they are feeling.
A number of times we got the children to do art which all of them enjoyed. Everyday there was some sort of art activity going on. There was one day that I was the one doing the art with the children and we choose to make little flower, which was good, because all the children who took part had a different idea of how to draw the flower and different reasons for wanting to draw them. There was this one child who wanted to do lots of flowers so they could give it to their parents. Other children wanted to do it, because they saw their friends doing it, while others enjoyed using different colours to draw with.
Also, it really nice to see how one idea can be changed into what the person who is doing it feels it should be through the use of colour, shape and background. The third form of communication is non-verbal communication, this is using gestures, postures and facial expressions to express feelings. Being able to tell what a child is feeling helped with being able to tell whether they were enjoying an activity or if it was time to finish the activity and move on to something else. It was also a way of telling whether a child really wanted to do something or was perhaps only doing it because his/her friend wanted to do it.
In which case, they could become bored and disruptive. On my placement there was a child who did not fully understand or speak much English. Staff therefore had to focus more on non-verbal means of communication. We also had an autistic child, who didn’t smile making it difficult to work out what he liked, if he didn’t like something, he would throw a tantrum and start stamping his feet. When he was happy he went off and played by himself with his parrot puppet. In this case, we were using non-verbal actions to help understand his moods or his feelings, particularly as his verbal communication wasn’t very good.
The fourth type of communication that is very frequently used in any working environment is formal and informal. It is essential that you know when to use the two types of communication because it is important that you use the two in the right situation. Formal communication allows you to be respectful to other people and indicate that what you are dealing with is serious. It also allows you to be professional and slightly distant. On my work placement when I arrived, the type of communication used was formal.
I was introduced to the people I would be working with and their responsibilities. I was also given a printed guide of what was expected of me during my placement. I was also a copy of the different polices used in the nursery, such as; health and safety, equal opportunities and risk assessment. This was information that I needed to know and apply during my placement. The written format, allowed me to refer to it while working. As I got to know the staff, our communication became more informal, making it easier to discuss events and activities that we would be doing with the children.
I was able to switch from having to be told to do things in a formal way to offering to do things in an informal way. For example, one of the play workers asked me to tidy up after an art activity. Later on in the week, I was able to ask her if she wanted me to give her a hand rather than waiting to be asked to do it. Another example was when talking with the children where I needed to be friendly and using informal language helped to make them feel at ease, but if they were misbehaving I had to change and become more formal to let them know that their behaviour was not acceptable.