Characteristic of a Good Communicator

We believe that children who excel in Communicating have these essential characteristics:

• An exceptional talent for listening attentively so as to understand what is being said. 
• A rich and varied vocabulary that gives clarity and interest to conversations.
• Clear speech that can be easily understood by a range of audiences.
• An excellent grasp of the rules used in English conversation, such as tenses and the grammatical structure of sentences.
• A highly developed ability to tell stories that capture the interest and imagination of the audience.
• A delight in initiating and joining in conversations.
• Respect for others when communicating, even when views differ.




In order to excel in Communicating, we believe that children throughout our school must achieve the following learning objectives:

•    To listen carefully and understand 
•    To develop a wide and interesting vocabulary 
•    To speak with clarity 
•    To tell stories with structure 
•    To hold conversations and debates

Specifically, the children should master the skills below:

Learning Objectives

Key Stage 1

Milestone 1

Lower Key Stage 2

Milestone 2

Upper Key Stage 2

Milestone 3

To listen carefully and understand

• Sift information and focus on the important points.

• Seek clarification when a message is not clear.

• Understand instructions with more than one point.

• Engage in discussions, making relevant points.

• Ask for specific additional information to clarify.

• Understand the meaning of some phrases beyond the literal interpretation.

• Understand how to answer questions that require more than a yes/no or single sentence response.

• Recognise and explain some idioms.

• Understand irony (when it is obvious).

To develop a wide and interesting vocabulary

• Use subject specific vocabulary to explain and describe.

• Suggest words or phrases appropriate to the topic being discussed.

• Identify homophones.

• Use time, size and other measurements to quantify.

• Use interesting adjectives, adverbial phrases and extended noun phrases in discussion.

• Use vocabulary that is appropriate to the topic being discussed or the audience that is listening.

• Use adventurous and sophisticated vocabulary.

• Explain the meaning of words, offering alternatives.

• Use a wide range of phrases that include determiners, modifiers and other techniques to add extra interest and clarity.

To speak with clarity

• Speak in a way that is clear and easy to understand.

• Demonstrate good phonic knowledge by clearly pronouncing the sounds within words.

• Identify syllables within words.

• Use verbs with irregular endings.

• Use a mixture of sentence lengths to add interest to discussions and explanations.

• Use intonation to emphasise grammar and punctuation when reading aloud.

• Vary the length and structure of sentences.

• Ask questions and make suggestions to take an active part in discussions.

• Comment on the grammatical structure of a range of spoken and written accounts.

To tell stories with structure

• Ensure stories have a setting, plot and a sequence of events.

• Recount experiences with interesting detail.

• Predict events in a story.

• Give just enough detail to keep the audience engaged.

• Bring stories to life with expression and intonation.

• Read the audience to know when to add detail and when to leave it out.

• Narrate detailed and exciting stories.

• Use the conventions and structure appropriate to the type of story being told.

• Interweave action, character descriptions, settings and dialogue. 

To hold conversations and debates

• Take turns to talk, listening carefully to the contributions of others. 

• Vary language between formal and informal according to the situation.

• Add humour to a discussion or debate where appropriate. 

• Make relevant comments or ask questions in a discussion or a debate.

• Seek clarification by actively seeking to understand others’ points of view.

• Respectfully challenge opinions or points, offering an alternative.

• Negotiate and compromise by offering alternatives.

• Debate, using relevant details to support points.

• Offer alternative explanations when others don’t understand.


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