This is coming forth from the very depth of my heart. It is very critical that we understand how to communicate with our children. Many of us have lost the children under our care as we are not able to communicate with them effectively.
Communication is said to be the blood of every relationship. We all know the inevitable role blood plays in the body. Apart from the fact that it must be enough to guarantee survival, it must also flow freely. It is therefore not enough that a person has sufficient blood, he must have free flow or circulation for him to stay alive, hale healthy and comfortable.
If we use the illustration of what blood is to the body as a template to judge our success in effective communication with our children and its inevitability to our relationship with them, many of us have succeeded in strangulating our relationship with our children. And this is very sad.
Communication with children requires skills, which many of us have not made deliberate commitment to acquire.
I will like to begin by asking the question, what do we understand by communication? Communication comes from Latin “communis“, meaning to share. Dr. Julia Scherba de Valenzuela, an Associate Professor of Special Education, who has done extensive work on ‘language socialization and communication development among culturally and linguistically diverse populations,’ defines communication as ‘any act by which one person gives to or receives from another person information about that person’s needs, desires, perceptions, knowledge, or affective states. Communication may be intentional or unintentional, may involve conventional or unconventional signals, may take linguistic or nonlinguistic forms, and may occur through spoken or other modes.’
The foregoing definition goes to show relationship with children is impossible without communication in all its ramifications, intentional, unintentional, conventional, unconventional, verbal and non-verbal.
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