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Recognise how positive relationships promote children’s well-being.
Developing and maintaining positive relationships with parents and other professionals is imperative as children pick up on behaviours they have observed around them because are very impressionable and pick up on their surroundings. By professionals working together they can provide the best quality of service to children. Practitioners should build up a mutual trust and respect with all parties within an early year setting.
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Children observe the people around them behaving in various ways. This is in Individuals that are observed are called models. In society children are surrounded by many influential models, such as parents within the family, characters on children’s TV, friends within their peer group and teachers at school. These models provide examples of masculine and feminine behaviour to observe and imitate. (http://osclinks.com/624).
There are many different relationships that need to be built within the early years setting.
Children’s friendship- It’s important that children are encouraged to build friendships within an early years sitting this will allow them to feel more comfortable and enjoy learning and developing as individuals. Children are more confident when surrounded by other pupils as they are able to relate to them and build up a support system within their group of friends, this will help them develop into well rounded individuals and provide them vital skills for socialising which will help them later in life.
Key worker relationship- Children should have a close relationship with their practitioners so they feel at ease knowing that they have someone they can trust and turn to, if a child feels comfortable with their key worker they will be able to go to them with any hardship they may feel, for example if a child is upset about anything within the setting they should be able to go to their key worker.
Partnership with parents- The relationship between practitioners and parents is essential, communication is key between both parties and they will need to work closely in order to achieve the best possible outcome for all children. By practitioners and parents having a good relationship this makes it easier for the parents and children in being honest with each other. Parents will not feel at ease leaving their children unless they are completely satisfied and feel that the staff that their children are left with are honest and reliable. Vital information can be passed between parents and practitioners if there is a strong relationship and this will help with the development of the child should there be anything of concern that needs more attention, such as a child’s aversion to a certain toy due to fear.
Colleague relationship- All the staff members within an early years setting need to have a good relationship in order to communicate and pass around information that is needed. For example when a key worker is not in for their shift, they will need to ensure that another staff member will need to be informed about the children’s needs that is in their care. All practitioners will need to trust each other in order to have an effective environment to work in.
Multi-agency and integrated working- It’s essential that everyone working with the children and their families communicates well and understands their roles and responsibilities. A multi-agency is when professionals from different settings work together. A multi-agency approach is beneficial as professionals can share their information about the family’s needs with each other. It is fundamental that all professionals treat each other, parents and children with respect, make them feel welcomed and also comfort them if they are going through difficulties. A multi-agency is there to help parents and families through difficulties.
An early years setting should cater for every parents needs as well as the children’s, for example if a parent has hearing impairments and can only communicate through sign language, it would be important to locate a key worker to their child who can use sign language if not have another member of staff that is able to sign. Also there may be parents to whom English will be their second language so to have someone interoperate will be necessary, this should be done both through verbal and written communication.
Analyse the importance of the key worker system for children.
A key person has the responsibility for working with a small number of children, giving them the reassurance to feel safe and cared for with the absence of their parents. At such an early age children are dependent on their parents, it is vital that the key worker develops a close relationship with their key children because they will be the first point of contact for the child and the family.
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Starting an early years setting can prove to be distressing for children, they are introduced to a new environment and new people this can be a lot to take in for children. Furthermore being left in the setting without their parents/guardians can result in the child experiencing separation anxiety, which can leave them feeling anxious, Erik Erikson, devised a theory of psychos social development. The first stage of his theory relates to children in their first years of life. Erikson believed that the quality of the care children in this age group receive depends on how well they develop trust in their carer. (Early Years Level 3-V1.0 page 32). In order for the practitioner to build trust with the child they will need to find out the child’s interest and know how to engage with them, make them feel comfortable, If a child is having difficulties settling in, they key worker should work alongside the child’s parents and have them in the classroom while the child can familiarise themselves with the setting and develop a bond with their key worker.
If a child feels at ease with their key worker, it’ll help them become independent. Children’s independence is most obvious when they’re comfortable with their surroundings, such as when they are in their own home with family, or with friends and family and familiar carers such as a key person. (Practice Guidance for the Early Years Foundation stage) When the practitioner is first introduced to their key child they will usually lead the ‘settling in session’. This is the period where the parents get introduced to the key worker, this will give them a chance to discuss their child and any important information. This can vary from what the child can and cannot have to due to religious or health reasons, any medical problems and what procedures may need to be carried out, if the parents of the child are not in a relationship the key worker will need to be informed of the routine on who will collect the child on what day and who to contact in case of emergency.
Some children may not respond well to settling in, many different circumstances can result in a child being distressed during this period. This is where the practitioner will have the duty to comfort them and make them feel at ease ‘Family linked in the literature to unemployment, divorce, financial difficulties and other stressors in family life, any and all of which can interfere with sensitive and consistent parenting’. (Child Development-Theory and Practice 0-11 Jonathan Doherty and Malcolm Hughes).
Explain the benefit of building positive partnership with parents for children’s learning and development.
One the most important relationship within an early years setting is the relationship between the practitioner and the parents, it is essential that they work together to achieve the best possible outcome for the child. Practitioners should regularly be communicating with the parents of their key child, this can be done in many different ways such as Open days, Parents evening, workshops and activities that involve the parents. It is imperative that every parent attend at open day, this will allow the parents to explore the environment their child will be in, get familiar with the staff in the setting, especially the key worker for their child. This will also allow the practitioner to familiarise themselves with the parent or carer of the child. All families are different some children may live with both or one of their parents, some may live with a foster parent or a carer or relatives and some with the same sex parents. This will give the practitioner an insight of the child’s background as well.
Practitioners should consistently be communicating with the parents of their key children to ensure an effective way of working. For example if the child is struggling on a certain aspect of their activities in the classroom, the practitioner should discuss this with the parents and advise them on how to motivate and guide the child at home. Both the practitioner and the parent should concentrate specifically on bettering the skills of the child when approaching the activity that they may lack confidence in. Parents and practitioners can interlink to achieve a more productive and enthusiastic attitude from the child.
A practitioner should welcome parents and inform them about all the activity is going to take place. If there any leaflets the practitioner has to give them to parents so that the parents are then aware of what is going on in the nursery. It is also very important that the practitioner and parents work as a team and provide a quality service for children for example if the teacher is planning out an activity for the children they can involve the parent in with the activity, as the parents have a better understanding of their children. They can work together and combine their knowledge in order to receive the best possible outcome for the children. It also paramount that practitioners respects all parents decisions on how they want to raise their child, practitioners should have a relationship where they can be open and honest with the parents but need to understand that the parents have the final say even though practitioners may not agree.
Describe how to develop positive relationships within the early years settings, making reference to principles of effective communication.
A multi-agency approach is beneficial as professionals can share their information about the family’s needs with each other. It is fundamental that all professionals treat each other, parents and children with respect, make them feel welcomed and also comfort them if they are going through difficulties. A multi-agency is there to help parents and families through difficulties. Professionals must respect parent’s spiritual beliefs, religion and accept them for who they are. Also ensuring there are no judgemental comments specified. A multi-agency is obliged to keep all information confidential and must remain between the professionals and parents and must not be discussed to an outsider. It is also important for practitioners to work together with the multi-agency team so they can identify the child’s needs through common assessments and then work together and take action on what services need to be provided to meet the child’s identified learning needs and in some cases some of the children’s needs cannot be met then they will have to decide what action needs to taken from there and then set a review date.
In an early years setting it should be the staff’s main priority to have a good relationship with other settings such as doctor surgeries, social services, health visitors. Forming a relationship with external settings will allow the practitioners to communicate in any issues to achieve the best possible result, for an example, if a practitioner becomes aware of bruising on a child consistently and the parent is not responding to the practitioner’s concerns then they should consider contacting social services.
As professionals it is required skill to understand and communicate with another member and share information for example if another organisation is offering some information then as a professional you are allowed to share it with individual, families, carers, groups and communities, it is a professionals job to make the parents feel comfortable with leaving their child in a child’s centre. Confidentiality is essential within the multi-agency team because the professionals have to keep the parents word confidential and make sure that they do not break the confidentiality policy. The EY requires that, ’confidential information and records about staff and children must be held securely and only accessible and available to those who have a right or professional need to see them’ By remaining professional and having good communication with everyone that has a part in the child’s life or development is essential. Confidentiality policy has to be maintained by all care setting practitioners. If parents are to be spoken to about their child’s progress or needs, then this must take place in a separate room to maintain confidentiality. Personal information about the children should not be left in an area where others can have access to it. However if information is to be breached the practitioner must ask the parents if they can pass this information on. A practitioner should always strive for high standards of care by following policies and procedures. The EYFS states the positive relationships and parents as partners. The practitioner should respect and achieve the best of their ability to provide a safe and welcoming environment.
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