Communication and Partnership Working
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Identify the reasons and benefits for working in partnership: There are lots of reasons why it is beneficial for practitioners to be working in partnership with parents, guardians and careers and other companies and one of these reasons is that it helps with meeting the care needs of the children. By working in partnership it also means that better outcomes for the children will be delivered because by passing on information about the child’s day to their parent/careers will let them know what they have been up to, what they like to eat and play with and give them chance to ask their key worker about any concerns they have or if they want any advice on anything for example when it comes to potty training they may want advice on that and by the key worker and the parent/career working in partnership together they can plan and achieve the best way possible for that child.
By working in partnership with parents and careers is that you can get them to fill out an ‘all about me’ form for their child when starting at the nursery so that you can get to know that child as an individual, get to know their likes and dislikes, any allergies they have, any dietary requirements and what they enjoy doing. Not only will this mean that all that child’s needs, requirements and preference be met to the best that they can be but also will help when the child is going through a transition to either a new home, new school ect or when they are going through an unplanned transition or significant event. The role of a key person in a setting is to ensure that every child’s care needs are met and this includes meeting a child’s individual needs in relation to transitions and significant events that that child is going through. It is important that the key person works in partnership with every child’s parents/careers so that they are aware of any planned transitions that a child may be going through or about to go through and this is because the key person needs to support the child during this transition and help prepare them for it.
This is beneficial for the parents/careers as well as the child because this will help the child have a better understanding of what is going to be happen/what is happening and parents will be more confident knowing that their child is going to have a better understanding and other children as well as the individual child will be able to learn from this. The key person needs to prepare the child for the planned transition and this can be done by planning activities which relate to the transition for the child and the other children to do so that they learn and play whilst developing a better understanding. For example if a child is going on holiday for the first time on an aeroplane a role play activity where the children pack their suitcases and then sit on rowed chairs, set out like on an aeroplane, and have some children pretending to be flight attendants this is a fun and interactive way of helping the child prepare for this transition.
Another example would be if the child is going to have a younger sibling, activities such as playing happy families and babies will be helpful for that child. The child needs to be involved as much as possible to ensure they get the best preparation and understanding of the transitions as much as possible so that they find it easier to cope with and more comfortable with the change. Getting the child and other children to make houses and aeroplanes out of cardboard boxes is a fun way of preparing them as well. If the pre-schoolers are preparing to move to their new schools the children and key persons can make photo books or displays of each school and pictures of the children on the picture of their new school so that they know what school they are moving to and where their friends are going. Visiting the different schools will help preparing them because they will get to see the school that they will be moving to and get to meet the teachers, this can make the transition less scary and overwhelming and make them excited to go to school.
Another role of the key person during a child’s transition is to make sure that they are always being positive and supportive throughout the transition and to be encouraging as this will help build their confidence and self-esteem, the key person also needs to empower the child to make sure they are developing resilience throughout the transition so that they self-sooth and allows them to adapt and to cope with the change. This will help them in future transitions as well. Having relevant people come into the setting such as nurses, dentists, doctors ect to carry out talks for the children can help support and prepare them during transitions. Also showing video clips is a good way of preparing and supporting a child as well as talking to them about how they are feeling and thinking, asking them questions and letting them ask you questions will help them develop an understanding of the transition. When a child experiences a significant event in their life such as the loss of a person or pet, there will be no preparation of how to support and prepare and support the child because a significant event is unplanned so the key person needs to know what the significant event is and then have an action plan of how they are going to support the child now that this has happened.
Again working in partnership with the parents/careers will ensure you know everything that is going on and happened in that child’s life so that you can put in the correct practices to make sure that child is supported and their individual needs/requirements are met. For example, if a child lost a significant family member over the weekend and that child is now very down and upset over the situation and doesn’t have a proper understanding of how to cope or why it has happened the key person needs to provide activities that will support the child. Doing show and tell and suggesting the child brings in something to do with the loss of the significant person so that they can tell the other children about it can help keep them positive and build their self-esteem, also making a card to the significant person so that the child can write and draw or do paintings will also support them.
Making hanging stars or shapes that the child can hang on a tree in their garden or the settings garden can support them as they can say that their significant person is now represented by that shape and that they will also be there. Having priests and vicars in for talks about heaven can help the child cope with the event and give them a better, positive understanding of what has happened. If the child has lost a pet the setting can carry out a small service for the pet so that the child and other children can get involved and this will also give the child/children and better understanding of the situation. Making paintings and photo books of the pet and making a card for the pet is another way of support the child during this significant event.
Working in partnership with initiatives is also a way of meeting childrens needs. There is a wide variety of local and national initiatives that help promote children’s health and well-being so that every child’s basic care needs are met, that they are healthy and have a healthy and positive well-being so that they grow and flourish into the best adolescents. Initiatives also involve the parents and careers even though they are children based. A well-known national child initiative is the National Child Measurement Programme. The government’s aim of this initiative is to tackle childhood obesity and their ambition is to achieve “a sustained downward trend in the level of excess weight in children by 2020” The national child measurement programme sends in an NHS member into reception classes (4-5 years old) and into year 6 classes (10-11 years old) to weigh and measure the height of each child in order to tackle obesity and children with weight issues. They are weighed and measured in private to which the results will be confidential; they are also weighed in their school clothes.
There any many benefits of this initiative, the programme will offer support and advice for the children and their parents/careers to help with the child’s weight and get them healthy. They can offer healthy food plans for at home and advice and recommendations of exercise the children can do and parents/careers can get involved as well which can result in them looking into a healthy life style as well. Other benefits of this initiative is that it will help keep children’s obesity and over weight to a minimum meaning this will keep the children from developing obesity related illnesses and diseases such as, type 2 diabetes, heart attacks, heart disease, asthma, low self-esteem, depression, bone and joint problems, disturbed sleeping and strokes. Reducing obesity in children will help with their emotional well-being due to their self-image and let them blossom with confidence will be positive and they will feel better in themselves if they are at the healthy weight recommended for their gender, height and age.
It is recommended that small changes occur over time as children can find large changes overwhelming and be discouraged. Settings are implementing this initiative by encouraging healthy eating and healthy foods throughout the children’s school dinners because they are nutritional and healthy balanced meals that will help maintain a healthy weight and give them energy to play throughout the day. Children are also encouraged to play sports, P.E, and be more active throughout the day to make sure they are using their energy efficiently! Settings encourage water and milk instead of squash and sugary drinks because sugary drinks can cause weight gain. Settings can also work in partnership with the children’s parents/careers to get them involved in keeping a stable weight and encouraging healthy eating and physical exercise when at home. Settings and schools providing after school clubs and activities such as football, netball and trampoline so they can keep children physically active, doing something that they have chosen and enjoy and give them a sense of belonging!
Another national initiative is Change 4 life and the aim of this initiative is to encourage families and children to have a healthier approach to life by making healthier eating choices and participating in more physical activities and exercise, this is to help prevent life threatening problems and illnesses that are caused by being overweight or obese such as diabetes, heart attacks and strokes and help prevent and get down the number of child obesity. The benefits of this are that the who family can get involved with change 4 life so that everyone can help each other out and the family can become healthier together.
Will also bring families closer together because they will be encouraged to go out and do activities together and have a healthier outlook on life so that the children grow up to be healthy and free of any weight related illnesses and the parents/carers can help improve their health. Fun and enjoyable support, advice and activities are provided by change 4 life so that families and schools have ideas on how to implement and get support. Smart food swaps are encouraged. This is implemented into settings by the meals providing healthier and nutritious foods and that child have a choice of different health snacks and outdoor play is encouraged more as well as after school clubs being offered.
A local initiative is Hampshire County Council and this is a nature and health initiative and their aim is to encourage nature activities and children and adults becoming more active. This can improve well-being, physical skills and mental health. This initiative also helps encourage a happy and healthy start to children’s life. The benefits of this are that children, families, adults will become more active and physical which will help improve their health and well-being and help prevent health and mental problems for children in the future and this initiative provides child and adolescent mental health services such as CAMHS which provide support and advice for substance miss-use, mental health disorders and learning difficulties and they also work in partnership with parents/carers and schools. They also have psychological therapists, nurses, sessional and social workers, psychiatrists and outreach workers. Settings can implement this initiative by having trips out to nature reserves and parks and having an allotment or vegetable patch in the setting for the children to grow vegetables and fruit, this will promote healthy eating as well.