Explain the benefits for children when their individual needs are met.
Each child develops at different rates; this includes growth, development and learning. As soon as a child is born they are learning. It is how we respond to each individuals needs can have an effect over how an individual develops. Development matters is a document which roughly outlines at what developments or milestones should be completed at what age. It is important to monitor each individual to check that these milestones have been reached as early intervention maybe required to meet a child’s developmental needs. The earlier identification can take place, the sooner additional support can be implemented to minimise disruption in an individual developmental requirements.
There are many reasons that may affect why a child may require additional support. If a child is delivered prematurely it will delay development as a child needs to continue the development with medical support to complete the development that would naturally happen in the womb. This would then carry on to have a development delay in many of the milestones completed at a full term child would have completed these difference have usually disappeared by the age of two unless there is other development problems.
If a child is born with a disability it does not automatically follow that there will be a development delay in achieving many of the early milestones. They may however need additional support or a different way of learning in future to meet any specific needs.
Illness can also have an effect; minor illness can affect how a child acts on a daily basis whereas a long term illness can have a major impact on how a child develops.
Environmental issues can effect a child’s development both physically and emotionally. If a child is in a poor environment there may not be the opportunities for outdoor play or their dietary requirements may not be met. Albert Bandura believes that a good social environment is pivotal as children copy the actions of others, so need good role models
Stress either through illness, abuse or loss of a close family member can lead to development problems as it can cause them to have a very negative view of themselves.
When a child’s needs are fully met it gives them a strong starting point to explore the world around them. This aids their learning process as it gives them the confidence to try new things.
Describe how the principles of anti-discriminatory practice can be applied to practice.
Anti-discrimination must be applied to all areas of learning, to discriminate against an individual is to treat them less favourable than others. This will obviously have an effect on their own self-image and knock their confidence; this in itself could aid development delays as they will not have the confidence in themselves to try new things. Everyone is quite different whether it is from being from a different cultural background, learning abilities or disabilities or talents. Each difference should be celebrated and each child have their own unique needs met. The United Nations Convention on the rights of children deems that as each child is unique it is a child’s right to air their views and opinions and that as a care giver you should have the best interests of the child as the core of your practice. The EY Statutory framework deems that policies should be in place to promote equal opportunity for all children in each establishment and that they should state how an individual’s needs should be met. All children should not just be treated the same, they should however, be given the same concern and attention to enable their own unique needs and personalities to be met and that they can develop their own identity and have a positive self-image.
Discrimination may be as a result of prejudice. Any practice should celebrate cultural differences by introducing toys and resources from all faiths and cultures. These do not have to be introduced just because a child of a different faith or background has started to attend but should be common place as we are form a very diverse culture. This is good practice so all children will not have preconceived ideas but are open to absorb the experiences of others. UNICEF the convention states that every child has the right to a childhood, to be educated, to be healthy, to be treated fairly and the right to be heard.
Describe why it is important to plan activities that meet the individual needs of children.
It is important to plan activities around each individual child to ensure that their emotional and development needs are met. Unique child states children often learn and develop best when they are doing an activity that they enjoy. EY Statutory framework says that we as practitioners must consider each individuals needs and plan activities that are challenging and enjoyable for each child. Each child should be designated their own key worker so that they can act as the main caregiver. They should participate in the everyday routines and the planning and assessments for each child. All practitioners should follow a cycle of planning, assessment and observation for the children in their care. When observation takes place it is important to see how the child acts when playing freely. We are able to see what their interests are and what they are able to do for themselves. Through these observations we are able to see what a child’s knowledge and understanding their skills and abilities but we are not putting undue pressure on the child. Through assessments we are able to see how well their can actually perform different tasks and allows them to put in practice this knowledge.
When looking at the planning stage we are able to draw on our findings from assessment and observation and plan activities for building activities moulded for the child, for example if a child needs to perhaps build on their fine motor skills and loves cars, we could encourage them to make cars using Lego. Following this process allows us to stimulate and stretch a child’s understanding and ability but not so much that they lose interest or are negatively affected by an activity that may yet be too hard that they are unable to complete. Differentiation is when these activities are adapted to the needs of each individual so they can participate fully in all activities. This includes adult interaction, specialist equipment adapting resources communication and langue assistance. A Unique child it states that all children within a group will be at different stages of development and will need different levels of support. With variable learning outcomes it enables us to have an individual outcome for each child to achieve.
Explain how the practitioner can promote the children’s physical and emotional wellbeing within an early setting.
Promoting health and wellbeing is essential in all practices. All children should feel safe and happy when in someone’s care. To aid a child to feel safe when joining they should be assigned a key worker who will be the first point of contact for both child and parents. A Unique child states that independent learning should be promoted, through our observations and planning this can be achieved as tasks can be set and the child encouraged making choices. Children should be encourage to interact with others and model behaviour on good role models. Movement should also be promoted through either indoor or outdoor play.