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Reflective Account of Child GSA

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Childcare
Wordcount: 1804 words Published: 17th Aug 2017

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Recently in our house in the month of May this year a young boy has joined as a day student. I will refer to him as Jake in this reflective account (this is not his real name and all relevant information/personal data regarding exact time of the movement has been changed in order to comply with the CSA Confidentiality Policy).

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When Jake first came to the house he of course came as a trial period and he has been accompanied by two other care workers from his former placement/school who knew him very well. This was a transition for him and also for us. His placement with our house was a two day a week. These two days were spread apart into Mondays and Fridays.

In order to assess his needs I believe it is required intensive observation. The information provided from his previous school, parents and care workers/social worker it is very important but I believe that working hands on with him will allow a better understanding and I could make a proper evaluation of his needs according to the new environment and settings that he is currently surrounded by.

When a new student enters our house, everyone's vigilance/attention and my own it is much higher in order to understand his needs, to assess him and fully understand him as an individual. I believe that everyone it is unique in their own way and to fully assess someone it takes a lot of care, understanding and information in order to take the right decisions for that person and provide the best care /therapeutic program so that they can grow and develop furthermore.

Jake is a very outspoken young man, knows what he wants and has grown a lot in the last months in independence and is more able to deal with changes than when he has first arrived to our house.

As an initial assessment it has been taking into consideration all the information gathered from his previous care plans, statements from care workers, discussion with his parents and most importantly by talking to Jake and finding out what he thinks and wants to do.

CSA uses a series of therapies and therapeutic activities and they are as follows: therapeutic art, music, speech, movement, riding, play, massage, foot bath and counselling. Every child and young adult that is attending school or it is part of a placement with CSA has the available support to benefit from all these activities. These therapeutic activities happen as a one to one situation unless stated otherwise in the child or young person's care plan. CSA has also a range of workshops available to every student that is in the community. They are as follows: metal, pottery, candle, weaver, felting, green woodwork and garden workshop. These workshops help with the increase of creativity, independence and self esteem which gives the students an incredible sense of achieving once they hold their creations into their own hands and not only also during the creative process.

Discussing with Jake, I quickly found out that he likes video games and that he is very technological. Jake is also a very good communicator which helped me understand quicker what and how I should approach a development care plan and properly assess his needs. Also by reading and asking about him from multiple sources provided but not only, especially through daily observation and working with Jake has been equally important.

At the beginning like I said his trial period consisted in showing him around the house, estate, programmes and workshops. He got to know everyone else from the house residents, day students and co-workers. He has been accompanied for the first month by other two staff members from his previous school and by me. The input from his parents, the information from his school, reading his previous care plan and the information from previous staff who has worked with Jake has helped me assess and better understand Jake's needs. Jake though has been the one who helped the most in order for us to provide the best care plan and fulfil his needs.

After each day that Jake spends with us it has been recorded in a diary which has helped me make his care plan and his individual risk assessment. They are all kept in the office in his personal file. After his arrival to the house there are 28 days in which I have to provide his care plan and the intended approach. Working with my colleagues, the craft masters, parents, former care workers from his previous school and with Jake's input I was able to make his care plan. Speaking with everyone involved gives me a better understanding of the whole situation and gives me the opportunity to take the best decisions. After doing so I made sure that everyone from the house who was involved in his care was aware, read, understood and that we all stand together on a common ground and take the same approach. These have been done through multiple meetings regarding Jake with all the personal that was involved in his care.

All observations, assessments and reviews are recorded in his personal file and it is kept in the office of the house and the main office of CSA. Each time he was with us has been documented and recorded his progress in his personal diary which is up to date. His personal file also includes a few incident reports.

The first few times that Jake was with us, actually the first two he was outgoing and very communicative.

In order to asses a child's needs according to the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 under section 24 it is primordial that it is looked upon at the child needs and it is equally important that it is looked at also at the ability of the carer in order to provide the care. Both parties are actually being assessed by the Council in order to provide the best care and the most relevant support that it is needed.

Meeting this need for Jake, gives us great responsibility in order to bring his development further. When his transition started with the CSA and the house for Jake it has been done through the proper channels.

For example:

Permission from his family in order to gather information that will allow us to understand and create a plan in order to meet up his needs, the discussions in the meetings regarding the assessment and most importantly a one to one get to know the child in a safe environment and space are the basic approach that gave us an insight. After all this a copy of the assessment it is handed over to the family once all this is finalized.

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As a general background Jake is a 7*(not his real age) year old young man and he has been struggling with accessing his education since nursery. He has been diagnosis with ASD and ADHD. When he feels that he is under pressure he has a tendency to present aggressive and violent behaviour. He is also a very chatty young man.

After a period of trial which consisted of Jake being in our house on Mondays and Fridays there has been a review concerning Jake's updates which was all about his adaptability to the new settings and if we were going on the right track regarding his development and needs. Clearly something needed to be changed if I wanted that this process to work out. Asking my colleagues and the craft masters about what and how I should best support his needs. An idea came that if these would have to work the space between Mondays to Friday should change. The decision was consulted with his parents and with all staff of our house that Jake will attend every day of the week for a shorter period of time in order to make a difference. I find this method to be very efficient and it has been proven with another student of our house and clearly worked. Less time during the day but on a scale that will include the whole week.

Also during this review because of all the disturbing behaviour he was engaging when he was picked up by the taxi and his previous care workers, I decided that this will stop and he should be picked up by his mum or different taxi driver and staff. His mum agreed.

After all this changes Jake has shown a lot of more calm and ease to be with us. He started to engage more in the house and with his co-workers and he started to attend more and more workshops that he has dismissed previously. He had at the beginning a two to one co-worker and now after six months he has progressed to a one to one co-worker.

There are times still when he acts out but he has also learned to have a time out or a break when he needs it. The staff is focusing on the positive behaviour rather than the bad one and once Jake was calm and ready to listen everything has been explained to him. Everyone from the co-workers does the same thing and we all stand together on a common ground in order to help Jake.

Once the plan is set out, everyone is to care it out accordingly. When a set of practice are respected and applicable by everyone in the team as an united front this has proven to give tremendous results in the care of the child/young person's needs.

As positive child behaviour methods and techniques CSA, uses a series of behavioural techniques which have been specified on page A of this paper. Through art, baking and always teaching them to ask nicely and to say thank you when they expect something to happen. Counselling and trying to make them understand is also a method that CSA uses which has been very effective with Jake. And lastly the consequences for example when they have less than a great day has been proven to be as equally effective when used as a united front.

At home it has been agreed that they should use similar techniques when Jake becomes a little bit less aware/unsettled. For example to keep his bedroom tidy, no video games after 10 and so on.

In order to keep and maintain a positive outcome but most importantly a positive behaviour Jake has agreed that he when overwhelmed will take a break/time out in order to collect his thoughts where he will not feel pressure from staff in order to attend the next activity for example.

In our weekly meeting we discuss and evaluate all sides. Everyone gets the chance to speak and to offer an opinion, support for the work. Once things are discussed especially on improvements and how to best support that positive behaviour within the program I take the decision to sustain or to cancel something that it is less than that.

For example Jake didn't want to have snack with everyone else so instead was offered to have a picnic outside together with 2 other co-workers and another student which seemed to make Jake very happy. This has been later integrated in his program because of the positive impact it had on Jake.


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