• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

What do we mean by wellbeing, and what does it look like as it takes shape in early childhood? What can we do to support the wellbeing of children at home and in settings?

This book provides some answers to these complex questions, in a straightforward, accessible way. Parts 1 and 2 offer students and practitioners a strong theoretical framework within which to explore ways of developing and extending their work with children and families, and with each other, including guidance on observation and assessment for planning. Part 3 provides practical strategies based on work involving families from a range of ethnic backgrounds, children's centre staff, local authority advisers, childminders, additional needs teachers and health visitors. Linking with the Early Years Foundation Stage, the book examines developing the key person approach, the power of play and making the most of everyday experiences. Part 4 discusses wellbeing for parents and practitioners, and collective wellbeing in settings and communities.

Essential reading for anyone studying early childhood, and for managers and practitioners working with young children and their families, this book is an inspirational guide to developing a framework for wellbeing from birth.

Wellbeing Themes
Wellbeing themes
Four Recurring Themes

Research now leaves us in no doubt of the importance of the earliest years from birth in terms of child development and wellbeing.1 The literature relating to early childhood wellbeing is essentially about child development and about the many factors that impact on that development. Such factors include our comparatively recent knowledge of how the human brain develops in the early years, early environments, the nature of society, and policy and practice in services for children and families. In this sweep of perspectives, certain early childhood themes frequently recur, and these are the focus of this chapter.

The first theme is early relationships. We know from many ...

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