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Multimodal learning approach in the nursery education

  • 12 Pages
  • Published On: 11-12-2023


The editor of Nursery World journal for a special issu

Subject: Multimodal learning approach in the nursery education

Respected Sir/Madam, employees

It is to inform you that, multimodality model of learning is beneficial for the studies in early years, in order to include the students and raise interest among them for participating actively in the learning and developmental activities. Through multimodal learning environment, it is also possible for the educational institutions to engage the children in the learning activities and also identify the special issues so that it would be possible to create good curriculum planning for supporting the children with adequate learning resources and develop multimodal learning approach in the educational institutions. It is also to inform you that, in the recent years of technological advancement, all the educational institutions try to develop inclusive learning style by engaging the children through different activities in the classroom, such as playing, drawing and other activities that further improve physical and mental health of the children by ensuring brain development. Hence, multimodal learning environment is crucial for the teaching professional to support the children with adequate resources and guide them through diverse activities in the classroom. It is hereby important for the educational institutions to manage the learning and developmental activities through adopting the multimodality and create multimodal learning environment for the benefits of the children.

Concepts of multimodality and multimodal learnin


Multimodality and multimodal learning refers to interplay between different representational models for instance between images and written and spoken words, so that it would be possible for the teaching professionals to develop learning curriculum planning for the benefits of the students. These models of learning are beneficial for supporting the children with adequate learning and developmental resources where the children are able to manage their learning activities and improve their social skill and adopt new knowledge. The five modes of multimodality and multimodal learning are such as linguistic, visual, gestural, spatial and audio. Multimodal learning refers to an embodied learning situation which engages multiple sensory systems and action systems of the learner and thus it is considered as an interactive multimedia environment for the students to enhance childhood learning and skill developmental process. The Paper-​​based multimodal texts include text books, picture books, comics, graphic novels, and posters, where the information are represented through graphics, images and posters (Marci-Boehncke, 2019). Additionally, the live ​​multimodal texts, for example, dance, performance, and oral storytelling as well as storyboard, convey the meaning through combinations of various modes such as gestural, spatial, audio, and oral language. The visual representation is also effective for multimodal learning arrangements, where the teaching professionals utilize power point presentation, documentation and video to teach the learners and develop their knowledge and expertise. In this regard, for examples the Simple multimodal texts are such as comics/graphic novels, print advertisements, newspapers, picture books, brochures, posters, digital slide presentations (e.g. PowerPoint), storyboards, e-books, e-posters, and social media. Hence, there is great influence of technology in developing the multimodality approach of learning, where it is possible to support and guide the learners with various activities and learning programs.

Multimodality approach of learning does not always mean to use latest technology, as multimodal texts can also be developed for supporting the children in the learning and developmental institutions. The Paper-​based multimodal texts are such as picture books, graphic novels, text books, comics, and posters, where the children are able to explore the information though reviewing the images and improve their knowledge and skill set. The Paper-​based multimodal texts are effective to support learning activities where the learners are encouraged to review the texts materials and posters for better understanding (Marci-Boehncke, 2019). On the other hand, the live ​​multimodal texts, for example, are such as dancing, performance, and oral storytelling and playing, which are useful to convey the meaning through combinations of various modes such as spatial, audio, gestural, and oral language. Oral language is considered as a fruitful technique to adopt multimodal approach of learning and also help the learners to understand critical information for further skill development. Additionally, Digital multimodal texts include animation, film, power point slide shows, digital stories, e-posters, podcasts, online videos and we​b pages that may include hyperlinks to external pronunciation guides or translations. These are effective for the learners to get access of the learning documents and resources for adopting new skill and knowledge.

Through these practice of multimodal approach in childhood learning, it is hereby possible to express the skill and knowledge in a simple way as well as develop creative ideas for childhood learning. The ideas and skill of the teachers are also improving through continuous creativity and technological innovation, where it is possible for the teaching professionals to develop creative curriculum planning for supporting childhood learning and improve interest of the children in learning and skill developmental activities. The educational resources are hereby utilised to construct the nature of the events, the objects and participants involved, and the setting and circumstances in which they occur (Marci-Boehncke, 2019). Interactive and replying with others can also be possible through multimodal approach of learning, in which the students are able to learn how to express knowledge, feelings, skills, attitudes and opinions, credibility, and power through different modes. The visual design, texts and concise messages are effective for the students to learn in a simple way and develop their skill set and activities.

Role of technology in multimodal teaching and learning

Technology is playing an important role in multimodal approach of learning, where the teaching professionals try to develop good curriculum planning for better student management and enhancing childhood education. The video making applications are utilised by the etchers for develop short videos with pictures and info-graphic activities, that convey the messages, texts and information to the children in a very simple way. Additionally, the power point slides and word documents are also utilised where the children are supported with good pictures, texts and speaker notes for developing their skill set and knowledge (Alzubi et al., 2018). The visual worksheet and online learning activities are also possible under technological advancement, where the teachers can monitor and supervise the students and help them to improve their learning activities and skill. Digital learning opportunities are the attest technical innovation in education and multimodal approach of learning, where the electronics device such as smartphone, tablet and laptop or computers are utilised for developing interaction between the teacher sand students and improving the learning activities through one to on interactions. The teachers also support the children with online training courses, textbooks and info-graphic maps for better development of the skill set and knowledge. Hence, the digital transformation through technological innovation enhances the quality of education and training, where the teaching professionals are successful to create good interactive learning by utilising the multimodal approaches of learning sessions.

Reggio Emilia approach as a multimodal approach

Reggio Emilia approach as a multimodal approach focuses on supporting the children in their developmental by using the multimodal approach and inclusive learning environment. It raises awareness among the children, about the learning process and skill developmental activities. The major two features as per the Reggio Emilia approach as a multimodal approach are the image of the child and the emergent curriculum (Alzubi et al., 2018). The image of the child refers to the primary talent of the philosophy that the children are competent, curious, creative and capable. Through raising interest among the children and continuous support, their curiosity and capability are improving where the child start exploring new things and objects as well as be competent and creative to learn new information and develop their skill set (Martínez-Villaseñor et al., 2019). The second characteristic is emergent curriculum that is a style of teaching and learning which is dependent on the teacher introducing the questions and listening to the child’s ideas and discussion. In this process, the question and answer round is developed, where the children are encouraged to participate in the question and answers and the teachers try to gather different answers to understand the ideas of the children. Through this interactive lesson, it is possible to develop multimodal approach of learning in the educational institutions. The principles as per the Reggio Emilia approach as a multimodal approach is such as; Children are capable to construct their own learning.

Children are natural communicators and they should be encouraged to express themselves however they feel they can as per their theory skill set and knowledge as well as the children are collaborators and learn through interaction within their communities. The classroom environment is also important to enhance the multimodal practice as per the Reggio Emilia approach, where the teachers are nurturers, partners, and guides, who facilitate the exploration of children’s interests as they work on short and long-term projects through enhancing cooperation and collaborative learning process (Trimble-Roles and Barton, 2018). As per the Reggio Emilia approach as a multimodal approach, the parents are also considered as a major partner in the multimodal learning approach, where the teaching professional try to involve the parents for enhancing child bonding and their participation in the team projects, audio visual session and other multimodal approaches of learning. Hence, Reggio Emilia approach as a multimodal approach provide clear strategies to develop good environment through inclusive learning process and collaborative learning, where there is continuous motivation for the children to take active part in the learning and skill developmental sessions.

Teaching styles and creativity in multimodal practice

The teaching professional in the recent years focus on developing several multimodal learning styles by enhancing creativity in curriculum development and technological innovation. The learning styles are described further,

Visual learning

By using textbooks with plenty of pictures and diagrams, graphical organisers like charts, diagrams and maps to formulate ideas are effective for teaching the students. The visual discloses through slideshows, short videos and power point presentations are important to guide the students for further learning and development. Moreover, the teachers develop color-coded stickers or highlighters, creating arts, diagrams and models as well as colour code assignment are also effective for supporting learning and skill developmental activities.

Audio learning

Audio learning program is also develop efficiently, where the teachers read the massages loud at the classroom, repeat the key concepts, explain the concepts with podcasts and songs as well as discuss the materials and study courses in the classroom through communication (Trimble-Roles and Barton, 2018). The teachers also arrange question answer round, discussion and debate session for motivating the students to tackle active part in the debate and discussion for knowledge sharing and information gathering. The teachers also aims at create Assign speeches, presentations or musical projects which are beneficial to enhance childhood learning through multimodal environment of learning.

Read and writing practice

Using textbooks, through plenty of pictures and written explanations as well as notes, slides and important point description are effective for reading and writing practice where the students can read and write the information for enhancing their knowledge. It includes worksheets and text documents which support the students for knowledge gathering (Taylor and Leung, 2020). Multiple choice short questions, encouraging the children to take notes and improving reading and writing style are beneficial to support the students in multimodal learning approach.

Kinaesthetic style

Using gestures, arranging drama plays and recitation and developing projects are effective to learn and improve own skill and abilities. The children are encouraged to show their creativity and explore new information for further skill enhancement and knowledge movement. These are the major teaching styles and creative practices, where the teaching professionals try to create good learning curriculum planning for supporting the students with multimodal environment. It further provides a scope to motivate the students and engage them in the above mentioned learning and skill developmental activities (de Silva Joyce and Feez, 2018). Hence, the teachers can enhance their creativity and adopt latest technology for developing the learning curriculum principles in promoting quality multimodal approach of learning and development.

Benefits of multimodal approach

The multimodal approach of learning and development is effective for the recent learning activities, where it is possible for the students to take active part in the learning session and adopt new skill and knowledge successfully. There are diverse learning approaches and materials through which the teaching professionals try to develop the multimodal approach for learning in the educational institution, so that the children feel included and perform better through continuous learning process. It engages the students in the learning and developmental process, where they are encouraged to participate and perform better through continuous learning. The teaching professionals motivate the children and enhance the early childhood educational activities in the classroom (Lacković, 2020). It addition to this, the multimodal approach of learning enhances the quality of education and learning where the teaching professionals are able to develop good curriculum planning for better management and supporting the children with effective learning environment. The quality standard of education is hereby maintained through the multimodality approach of learning in the classroom (Arnott and Yelland, 2020). It also reflects the complexity of real world interactions and develops student’s skill and abilities. The social skill, understanding as well as personal knowledge can be improved through this learning style, where the teachers and staff members in the educational institutions are trying to cooperate with the students for better educational activities and learning programs (Austin, Hampel and Kukulska-Hulme, 2017). The students are supported with effective learning and developmental resources and programs, through audio video session and other playing and learning activities. Hence, the quality of education can be maintained through the educational activities. It inspires the cooperative learning activities, where the students are trying to understand the team developmental activities, improve their interactive skill, problem solving and decision making skill, as these are important for child development and future professional career growth.

In addition to this, the teaching professionals are able to manage their activities in the classroom through enhancing communication and collaboration, where it is possible to engage the children and enhance their childhood educational activities. It is important to manage communication and cooperation in the classroom, so that the teachers can develop one to one communication and interact with others of better understanding. The students also can improve their communication skill and adopt the practice of cooperative learning style (Khanum and Theodotou, 2019). Hence, through multimodal approach of learning, it is possible for the teachers to enhance the communication and cooperation in the classroom, where the students can learn through team developmental activities and collaborative learning style. It is important for the organisational staff to create good multimodal environment for supporting and guiding the students and it further helps to maintain ethical code of practice in education and learning. Through multimodal approach of learning, it is hereby possible to develop good environment for enhancing learning and development (Jones et al., 2020). The teachers and other staff members would be successful to create good environment to learn and adopt new skill and knowledge. Inclusive learning can also be developed through such multimodality learning practice in the educational institutions. Other benefits of multimodal approach are such as it expands the creativity of teachers and students as well as maintains the novelty in the classroom. The teachers have unique abilities to enhance the quality of educational activities and engage the students for better performance. The students are continuously motivated to learn through different multimodal approach and it further raise their interest to participate actively in the institution for better learning and skill development (Brandao, and Theodotou, 2020). The creativity and innovation of the teachers are enhancing over the period of time, where they are experienced and efficient to develop good curriculum practice for the benefit of the students. This further provides a scope to teach the students with diverse learning resources and activities and improve student’s skill set and knowledge in a simple way.

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Conclusion and recommendations

Through the discussion, it can be stated that, the multimodal approach is beneficial for the teaching professional to teach the students in very simple way and enhance creativity in developing curriculum planning, which provides a scope to the teachers to raise interest of learning and skill development among the students. Through the multimodal approach of learning, the student participation rate will be maximised and their performance would be improving over the period of time. The social skill including communication, cooperation, team building, values and ethics as well as problem solving and decisions making skills are improved over the time though the multimodal learning approach. Hence, it is necessary for the teachers to create good multimodality learning principles and create inclusive learning environment for maximising child participants and their performance. The suggested recommendations are such as,

It would be grateful to develop multimodal environment through enhancing communication and cooperation in the classroom sessions, as well as maintaining equality and diversity, so that each child can get equal opportunity to participate in the learning and skill developmental programs in the classroom. Additionally, for managing good multimodal learning environment, it is necessary to improve understanding among the students regarding the social skill, values and respect others and on the other hand, language development is important. The teachers must develop the language of the children and maintain cultural diversity so that there would be no issue related language gap.

The teachers need to focus on video and audio session of learning so that it would be possible for them to encourage the children and utilise the latest technology for maximising the quality of learning, the teachers in this regard must develop power point presentation with slides and speaker notes, so that the children can gain deep insight on particular subject and gather more information through the speaker notes and picture slides. Additionally, it is necessary to enhance audio learning activities, through representation the class notes and communicating the information through developing debate and discussion. The teachers also need to develop question answer round in the classroom, and encourage the students to show their creativity for expressing their skill set and knowledge. This further helps to share information and knowledge among the student, so that they can interact with others and gather past range of information through debate.

Reference List

Alzubi, T., Fernández, R., Flores, J., Duran, M. and Cotos, J.M., 2018. Improving the working memory during early childhood education through the use of an interactive gesture game-based learning approach. IEEE Access, 6, pp.53998-54009.

Arnott, L. and Yelland, N.J., 2020. Multimodal lifeworlds: Pedagogies for play inquiries and explorations. Journal of Early Childhood Education Research, 9(1), pp.124-146.

Austin, N., Hampel, R. and Kukulska-Hulme, A., 2017. Video conferencing and multimodal expression of voice: Children's conversations using Skype for second language development in a telecollaborative setting. System, 64, pp.87-103.

Brandao, N. and Theodotou, E., 2020. The Reggio Emilia and the Mosaic approach: Opponents or allies in multimodal teaching and learning? A discussion of their contribution to multimodal learning in early years education. Journal of Global Education and Research, 4(1), pp.1-13.

de Silva Joyce, H. and Feez, S. eds., 2018. Multimodality across classrooms: Learning about and through different modalities. Routledge.

Jones, P., Turney, A., Georgiou, H. and Nielsen, W., 2020. Assessing multimodal literacies in science: semiotic and practical insights from pre-service teacher education. Language and Education, 34(2), pp.153-172.

Khanum, R. and Theodotou, E., 2019. A Comparative Study of Multimodal Approaches to Learning: To Support Children’s Learning in the Early Years. Research in Teacher Education, 9(2), pp.22-27

Khanum, R. and Theodotou, E., 2019. A Comparative Study of Multimodal Approaches to Learning: To Support Children’s Learning in the Early Years. Research in Teacher Education, 9(2), pp.22-27

Lacković, N., 2020. Exploring Multimodal Designs in Higher Education Practice. In Inquiry Graphics in Higher Education (pp. 283-350). Palgrave Macmillan, Cham.

Marci-Boehncke, G., 2019. Meta-discourses between responsibility and resistance: Reaching the aim of multimodal learning by ways of mediatization processes. In Responsibility and Resistance (pp. 199-219). Springer VS, Wiesbaden.

Martínez-Villaseñor, L., Ponce, H., Brieva, J., Moya-Albor, E., Núñez-Martínez, J. and Peñafort-Asturiano, C., 2019. UP-fall detection dataset: A multimodal approach. Sensors, 19(9), p.1988.

Taylor, S.V. and Leung, C.B., 2020. Multimodal literacy and social interaction: Young children’s literacy learning. Early Childhood Education Journal, 48(1), pp.1-10.

Trimble-Roles, R. and Barton, G., 2018. A child-centred approach to multimodal text composition in the early years. Practical Literacy: The Early and Primary Years, 23(3), pp.39-43.

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