Caring for children

Provide care for children CHCCN302A

This unit is about maintaining children's physical and emotional well being and nurturing their self sufficiency.



1. Give physical care

  1. Provide a safe and secure environment that enables children to be themselves
  2. Set up environments and equipment to facilitate physical experiences and play and go through changes
  3. Promote physical activity to children
  4. Organize opportunities for rest and kind of rest according to:
    • children's needs
    • context
    • the age and development of the child, and
    • their cultural background
  5. Create an environment conducive to rest
  6. Provide a quiet area for children to use when they need it
  7. Help children with hygiene according to each child's need
  8. Deal with toileting accidents in a way that protects the child's self-esteem and privacy
  9. Give children adequate food and drink that is varied according to age, culture, development and needs of the child:
    • Follow regulations on food handling and hygiene.
    • Follow nutrition adequacy guidelines
    • Supervise children when eating and drinking.
  10. Promote hygienic practices
  11. Dress children according to the need and prevailing weather conditions, and acknowledge their clothing preferences whenever possible
  12. Ensure that the food provided meets children's nutritional needs.


2. Create opportunities for children to learn about their physical needs.

  1. Explain nutritional needs to children in a suitable language
  2. Explain hygiene practices and demonstrate through positive staff practices and daily routines
  3. Explain safety issues and demonstrate procedures
  4. Support children to understand the relationship between physical activity and good health
  5. Offer opportunities for children to participate in food preparation and procurement

See development chart for relevant life skills related to their physical vary with the child's age/stage of development:


3. Establish an environment that encourages children to complete tasks themselves

  1. Make required materials accessible for children
  2. Make available enough time for the child to do the task in an unhurried way
  3. Encourage all attempts and speak about them respectfully
  4. Make available enough time, if wanted by the child, for children to practice and develop their skills
  5. Provide a range of experiences and an environment that encourages independence
  6. If they want, give children enough time to practice and develop their skills.


4. Respond to the emotional needs of children

  1. Develop routines appropriate to the child's developmental stage and provide a stable and predictable environment
  2. Identify and respond to children's feelings openly, appropriately and respectfully
  3. Respond to children's emotional needs, giving due regard to child's age, culture, development and need, including children with severe illness or long /frequent periods of hospitalization
  4. Encourage children to communicate; listen and treat them with respect
  5. Encourage opportunities to express feelings and emotions appropriately
  6. Be calm and consistent when dealing with emotional outbursts, while minimizing the disruption to other children
  7. Comfort children when hurt or distressed. Children can show distress by withdrawal, aggression, tears, etc.
  8. Ensure children are informed appropriately and prepared for any change


5. Settle new arrivals

  1. Observe parents and children for signs of stress/ distress on arrival
  2. Begin interaction with the child while parents are still present to minimize the abruptness of separation
  3. Encourage parents to take as much time as needed to have a relaxed, unhurried separation from their child
  4. Establish routines to minimize distress at separation of parent and child (e.g. give opportunity for a relaxed and unhurried separation of parent and child, have repeated visits to the service prior to parent's departure, have routine of short separation times before lengthy separations, have comfortable chairs where parents can relax with child prior to departure.)
  5. Respond to child's distress at separation from parent in a calm reassuring manner.


6. Other skills

  1. Cook food
  2. Manage time
  3. Organize your environment
  4. Relate well to others; communicate effectively with children, parents and other staff
  5. Evaluate and promote problem-solving
  6. Observation
  7. Willing to be reflective
  8. Empathize with child's feelings
  9. Treat all parents and children equitably, including Indigenous people
  10. Work with cultural diversity.



Your assessment

You will be assessed in your workplace. Start by taking your assessor on a walk around and show him/her what you do. Your assessor may ask you any questions. During the walkaround:

  • Describe in outline your organization's standards, policies and procedures
  • Explain how they affect the way you have organized the environment.

Your supervisor will also be asked to give a reference.

Interview/assignment questions

Your assessor may give you these questions as an assignment. If you are assessed through an interview, then you might want to prepare written notes beforehand. However, they should be used only as a guide and you will not pass the assessment just by reading your notes.

1. Rest

  1. What signs indicate that a child needs a rest?
  2. How much do children differ in their need for rest?
  3. Describe the kinds of sleep and rest patterns of children in your care.
  4. Describe three different routines and practices used by different families for children's sleep. What is the underlying cultural or personal rationale for each one?

2. Nutrition and health

  1. What nutrition needs do children have an different ages? Draw a diagram and be willing to explain it.
  2. What is the contemporary thinking on childhood obesity and health? Discuss physical activity and balanced nutrition in your answer.
  3. What are your state's regulations and guidelines for hygienic food handling?
  4. What temperatures should you store different kinds of food?
  5. What are your organization's policies on food hygiene?

3. Child development

  1. Draw a list of children's age groups and next to each one, write out the main characteristics of child development:
    • Physical development of gross motor skills
    • Physical development of fine motor skills
    • Physical skills
    • Language
    • Social relationships
    • Autonomy
    • Lay patterns
    • Cognitive development
  2. What are the most common effects on children of:
    • being in a single-parent family?
    • separation of parents?
    • death of a family member?
    • learning disability?
    • visible disability?
    • being from different ethnic background?
    • being from different socio-economic background from others?
    • long or frequent periods of hospitalization?
  3. In your role, what should you do to respond to those effects?
  4. Define self-esteem.
  5. What are the effects of good self-esteem?
  6. What are the effects of poor self-esteem?
  7. In your role, what should you do to foster good self-esteem?
  8. In what ways it is important to treat children as unique individuals? In what ways is it best to treat children as the same as their peers?
  9. Make a list of self help skills that you can reasonable expect children to develop at each stage of development.
  10. People in different cultures have attitudes to children's development of self-help skills. For example they might want children to develop autonomy earlier or later than you expect. They might have different power regimes in the family structure, different allocations of responsibility, and different roles for boys and girls. In the dominant ethnic culture in your particular organization, describe how children's development of self help skills is affected by their cultural background.

Children's emotional development

  1. For each age group, explain how children directly express emotional needs.
  2. For each age group, explain how children indirectly express emotional needs.

See chart for ways of fostering children's development of self-help skills according to the age of the child.