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Physical and mental health for young children
Physical and mental health for young children

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Session 6: Introducing the Toolkit to identifying health priorities


So far in the course, you’ve looked at some of the factors that influence young children’s health, examined the historical background and explored how the situation is similar or different to times gone by. You then turned to the contemporary state of children’s health and looked in detail at preventable and non-preventable health conditions. In the last session you examined policies from some other countries that support children’s health. This session you’re going to look at how practitioners can support children’s health in their education and care setting.

When seeking to locate suitable resources about how practitioners support and promote children’s health, it became apparent that there was a need to create a resource that was specifically aimed at practitioners working with babies and young children in pre-school education and care settings. For this reason, the Early Childhood Health Promotion Toolkit [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)]   was developed to help guide practitioners. The first part of the Toolkit includes background health-related information and resources. The second part of the Toolkit includes five steps which have been designed to be used to identify, implement and evaluate a health promotion intervention.

The Toolkit was developed with a pre-school nursery with 106 babies and children on roll. The nursery is in an area of high deprivation. The nursery used the Toolkit in a pilot study to test how useful it was in supporting the practitioners to examine how they supported and promoted the health of all the children in their setting. The pilot research findings (Musgrave and Payler, 2021) have helped to refine the Toolkit, and some of the content in this session is drawn from that research.

The content of this session introduces the ‘5 step plan’ and how parents and practitioners can complete this step together.