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The importance of positive relationships

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Positive relationships are important because they help children develop independence, self esteem and wellbeing. Children will feel confident, secure and be able to trust their relationship with adults in turn learning to trust their own decisions. Building positive relationships will provide the best possible care, support, learning opportunities and effective safeguarding for children and young people. As Maslow’s Theory explains this is the basis of a Childs development, feeling of belonging, support, safety and positive relationships. Positive relationships with young people are made by first of all actively listening to the children/young person and finding out there likes and dislikes, taking an interest in their personal life and most of all talking to them about these things so they know that you are listening to them, clear boundaries must be set to ensure the children have a guide that they need to follow, this will make it easier for the young person to understand that you are there friend but you are also in charge and in control, this will build respect in the relationship. Having positive relationships with children and young people is very important and essential, this is what it can do:

– When children feel comfortable with us they can separate more easily from their parents. – Children are more likely to participate in play and learning activities if they are secure emotionally. – when children have strong relationships, they are less likely to show unwanted behaviour as we can recognise and meet their needs. – children’s language develops more quickly because they feel confident talking to us. – practitioners can plan more accurately as they understand children’s developmental needs and know their interests. – practitioners are able to respond to children more effectively because they can recognise their expressions and emotions.

These are built and maintained by being comforting and reassuring children and young people when need it. To give praise for good behaviour, progress and guidance when required. Being consistent in your approach and being responsive and respectful to children’s individual needs, likes and dislikes. Planning activities and sessions with every child in mind. Adapting your own behaviour to the child’s preference, mood and situation. Modelling good behaviours, manners and respectfulness.

Also, to maintain a positive relationship with children and young people, you have to show young people you are approachable. Communication skills are therefore influential. Showing children and young people positive behaviour is also vital as positive behaviour encourages young people to have positive attitudes, which include manners and respect. This means that practitioners must be consistent in their moods and behaviour so reactions are predicable. Showing children you are a good listener and you understand in all situations helps with their confidence, giving them praise and encouragement encourages children to be positive.

Children and young people who feel valued are more likely to have higher self esteem and it is clear ‘from research Weinberg (1978), that children who have high self esteem are more likely to fulfil their potential.’

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