Oracy is the ability to communicate effectively using spoken language.
At Pinders Primary, we want all children to be able to talk with confidence and to articulate themselves clearly.
This short video that explains what Oracy is and how important Oracy, and the teaching of Oracy is. Click on the image below to view this video.
Child friendly explanation of oracy - Click on the image below to view this video.
In statutory terms, the Spoken Language elements of the National Curriculum (2014) outline expectations for the teaching of Oracy.
At Pinders Primary School, we know that aside from the statutory objectives of the National Curriculum, it is important to also teach children other aspects of Oracy. Children need to be taught:
Our Oracy curriculum is based on the Oracy strands developed by Voice 21 and Cambridge University.
The four strands of Oracy are:
Voice 21, whose Oracy framework is depicted here:
Physical Oracy strand
The physical strand of oracy is about how you present yourself when talking. It's about how you use your voice when you are speaking. It's also about your body language and if you make eye contact.
Linguistic oracy strand
The linguistic strand of oracy is about the words you choose to use and how you deliver those words.
Cognitive strand of oracy
The cognitive strand of oracy is all about the thoughts you have and the questions you ask during discussions.
Social and emotional strand of oracy
The social and emotional strand is about how we interact with others when communicating.
Oracy at home
We know it is essential that children continue to develop their Oracy skills at home and in different contexts outside of school. The most important thing parents can do is to talk with their children and encourage them to think and express themselves. Research shows that children who are able to express themselves and construct an argument are better able to progress in other areas of learning such as reading and writing.
Easy things you can do:
7 ways to promote oracy at home:
Try these techniques to help your child become a more confident communicator, in school and at home.
1. Read aloud to your child
Reading aloud to your child, well beyond the age they can read for themselves, combines the benefits of talking, listening and storytelling within one activity that helps children build their vocabulary, learn to express their thoughts, and understand the structure of language.
2. Record a video diary
Many children aspire to being vloggers or YouTube stars, so encourage them to start a video diary, either to chart their everyday life or to record special occasions like birthdays and holidays. For safety’s sake, keep these within the family rather than broadcasting them online.
3. Play word games
Games like 20 Questions, Guess Who? and I Spy are great for helping children use descriptive language and think critically about what they’re saying.
4. Talk about their day
Ask your child, ‘What did you do today?’ and they’ll often claim they can’t remember, so find different ways to talk about what they’ve been up to. Eating your evening meal as a family is a good way to encourage conversation, while older kids are often more chatty in the car, where they feel less like they’re being interrogated. You could also try our tips for asking the right questions to elicit information.
5. Phone a friend (or relative)
Persuade your child to take a break from text and WhatsApp and develop their speaking skills by making an actual phone call. Encouraging them to speak to different family members on the phone or on a video call will build confidence.
6. Go on a nature walk
This is a great pre-phonics activity for young children, who can be encouraged to listen carefully to the sounds they hear – from traffic to birdsong – and describe them. They can also describe the natural sights they see, such as trees, animals and birds and the sky.
7. Sign them up for a club
Joining extracurricular clubs is a good opportunity for your child to converse with different people outside the home or school environment. Many of them also involve taking instructions (such as being coached in sporting techniques or to complete science or art projects), and introduce them to different vocabulary relating to their new hobby.