REiMAGiNE
Practice

Supporting early childhood practitioners

Reimagine Australia provides support, resources, training and development for early childhood practitioners to best enable them in their work with families of children who have additional needs.

As the holders of the relationships of the highest trust with families, early childhood practitioners are in a unique position to influence the best outcomes hold the highest relationship of trust with families of children who require additional support.

Reimagine Australia has built its program of support for practitioners around contemporary, evidence-based best practice. Best practice acknowledges that a family knows their child better than anyone else, and that parents and caregivers have the most powerful influence on their child’s development.

Contemporary evidence shows that by working in partnership with parents and caregivers (that is, the adults who have the deepest relationships with the child) in a family-centred way, practitioners will significantly improve outcomes for children with developmental delay and/or disability.

Experience tells us that children learn best in everyday situations with familiar people. Practitioners who are aligned with best practice work to build the capacity of families to be able to support and encourage their child’s development through everyday learning in their day-today environments, such as their home and child care, or in the community in places like the playground or a shopping centre and so on.

Reimagine Australia provides early childhood practitioners with up-to-date information and tools that support children to realise positive outcomes. We also work to strengthen public policy and programs by promoting the benefits of best practice early childhood support to government.

We invite you to explore what Reimagine has to offer and become part of a movement that is helping to change lives.

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WHAT iS BEST PRACTiCE?

‘Best practice’ simply refers to a set of core principles that guide the way early childhood practitioners work with families of children with developmental delay and/or disability. Current research indicates that best practice in early childhood intervention centres on a family centred and inclusive approach.

In 2015, Reimagine Australia (or, as we were then known, Early Childhood Intervention Australia) were commissioned by the Commonwealth Government to develop the Best Practice Guidelines for Early Childhood Intervention.

The Guidelines, which form the basis of the NDIS Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) approach, are designed to support practitioners to provide high-quality, appropriate and effective support that meets the needs of the child and their family.

WHAT DOES iNCLUSiON LOOK LIKE?

Inclusion is a basic principle of best practice in early childhood intervention support. Inclusion is a right – and every child has a right to be included and to participate in their community. Inclusion happens when children are viewed as capable and valued contributors as opposed to having deficits that need to be fixed. Inclusion is about embracing our diversity as a strength and viewing each child for their unique qualities.

Inclusion is not about ’fixing’ a child or improving their skills so that they fit into the community or education environment. Inclusion focuses on the whole environment, and making changes to it so  that all children can participate. In an inclusive environment diversity is acknowledged, respected and viewed as a resource for learning, growth and change.

Inclusion benefits everybody and makes a difference not just for now, but for the future.

DOES THiS CHiLD NEED HELP?

If, in your work with children and families, you have ever found yourself internally questioning ‘does this child need help?’, then this resource is for you. Reimagine Australia’s offers ‘Does this Child Need Help?’ training support for practitioners. You can choose from our eLearning program or our face-to-face (or virtual face-to-face) training course.
  • Our ‘Does this Child Need Help?’ The course covers:
  • Early growth and development
  • Identifying when a concern may be an issue
  • What identification means
  • How to raise concerns
  • The role of early childhood intervention
  • How to plan the next steps including referral
As part of the face-to-face training course, participants will also have the opportunity to discuss issues and practise strategies for raising concerns about the development of a child in their care.

TELEPRACTiCE

Telepractice is becoming a more frequently used way for providers to reach families on a more consistent basis. Telepractice refers to the use of technology to deliver early childhood intervention services and supports at a distance. Methods of delivering telepractice may include, but are not limited to, email, telephone, videoconferencing and/or pre-recorded materials.

Using telepractice, early childhood intervention practitioners can deliver services in the child’s natural environment, such as a family’s home, and parents are able to incorporate the daily routines of their family into the session activities.

Research has shown telepractice to be very effective in achieving optimised outcomes for children with developmental delay and/or disabiity, in a family centred way.

Reimagine Australia has developed several resources designed to support and assist early childhood intervention practitioners to better understand how to establish and deliver their services via telepractice.

TRANSiTiON TO SCHOOL

Starting school is a big milestone for all children and their families, particularly families of children with additional needs.

Reimagine Australia understands that he most successful transition to school programs occur through a collaborative team approach. So, we have developed a suite of free resources designed to support early childhood practitioners, families, early childhood educators, schools and community groups to work in partnership to assist children with developmental delay and/or disability as they transition from their pre-school routines and activities to a school environment.

HELPFUL TOOLS AND RESOURCES

Early childhood is a time of remarkable brain development. Learning occurs at a rapid pace during the first eight years of a child’s life and these years set up how a child will learn and develop later in life. If a child with developmental delay and/or disability begins early childhood intervention at a young age the amount of support they may need later in life can potentially be reduced.

In order to best support practitioners in their valuable work with families, Reimagine Australia has developed a suite of resources which are freely available to practitioners.  

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