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Care for Babies CHCCN5C. Element 1: Respond to babies/infant cues and needs. Cues and needs. Infants cues and needs are met by the way we respond to them in their first two years of life, which can influence their ability to form trusting relationships for the rest of their life.

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Care for Babies CHCCN5C

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Care for babies chccn5c

Care for BabiesCHCCN5C

Element 1:

Respond to babies/infant cues and needs

Cues and needs

Cues and needs

  • Infants cues and needs are met by the way we respond to them in their first two years of life, which can influence their ability to form trusting relationships for the rest of their life

In Pairs discuss possible cues and needs and their meaning…….

Familiar infant cues

Familiar infant cues

Infants are born with a range of reflexes which function to assist the infant to survive

Infants are born with a range of reflexes which function to assist the infant to survive

The new brain research

The new brain research

In the last few years scientists have discovered:

  • Nature and Nurture contributes to brain development

  • In order for babies to thrive they must be



    -talked to

    -read to

    -allowed to explore the environment

Window of opportunity for the development of the brain

“Window of Opportunity”for the development of the brain

Optimal development means that this is when the best ‘wiring’ of the brain is developing and at the most rapid rate. The next best opportunity refers to the Strengthening of the wiring, and rewiring means the ability to make adaptations to existing wiring

Care for babies chccn5c

Ref: Schiller P. (1999) ‘Smart Start- Building Brain Power in the Early Years’.

Care for babies chccn5c

Caregiver’s can:

  • Give babies time, attention and affection

  • Understand that babies are social beings. They are primed to learn and communicate, and needs lots of opportunities for early experiences

  • Give lots of warm and responsive communication with adults, including physical contact and touch.

Appropriate responses to infant cues

Appropriate responses to infant cues

Understanding cues

Understanding Cues

Hunger Cues:

A quick, calm and reassuring response from the caregiver teaches the child to trust.

  • Anticipate when an infant is likely to feel hungry

  • Ensure the feed is ready and waiting for them

  • Ensure the hungry cry is dealt with immediately.

Fear or anxiety cues

Fear or anxiety cues

Page 22- One world for children- White board

Separation anxiety

Separation Anxiety

  • After about six months babies cry from being uncomfortable or from hunger

  • They also may become distressed when the parent (caregiver) is out of sight

  • Excessive change, noise, lots of activity and crowds may also prove to be a distressing situation for an infant

Stranger anxiety

Stranger Anxiety

  • Occurs between eight and twelve months old

  • May occur if confronted with something new, meet new people or put into a new situation

    Infants may express anxiety or fear of strangers by:

    -staring intently at the strange person

    -bursting into tears

    -holding tight to their caregiver

Anger cues

Anger Cues

Infants begin to demonstrate recognisable outbursts of anger from about four to six months.

Anger is about developing a sense of power and control.

Infants express anger:

  • When a toy is taken away from them

  • When they are held and want to get down

  • When they are stopped from doing something they want to

  • When the caregivers leave the room for a period of time

  • When they are put down for a sleep but want to stay awake

Care for babies chccn5c

When responding to infant’s anger cues a caregiver can:

  • Acknowledge the infant’s rights to be angry

  • Prevent the cause of anger if possible

  • Provide comfort while allowing the infant to cry

  • Encourage toddlers to verbalise their anger and to take part in energetic activities

Tiredness cues

Tiredness Cues

  • Respond quickly to early signs of tiredness

  • Follow the individual’s routine and rituals

  • Some infants need to be rocked, patted or rubbed gently on their backs

  • Some babies have a bottle or breast feed before sleep

  • Others prefer too be placed in their cots and fall asleep on their own

  • Respond in a calm and relaxed way to settle the infant/toddler into a sleep, having everything ready before hand

Pain cues

Pain cues

Individually think about your own response to pain. Do you feel pain acutely and make a big fuss, or do you hardly feel pain at all?

It is important that the caregiver responds quickly to any crying baby:

  • It is common for very young infants to respond in a high-pitched stressful cry.

  • Infants in pain will cry vigorously for about half a minute to a minute

  • If the child continues to scream or cry strongly for time after the incident, then they should be referred to a medical practitioner

  • Infants experiencing great pain may also go into shock and not cry out at all

Element 2

Element 2

Develop and maintain a nurturing relationship with babies/infants

DVD- Dunston- Baby Language

Developmental milestones for infants

Developmental milestones for infants

Physical Milestones

At birth a baby only has reflexes, movements and instincts, which are aimed at meeting basic needs. Over the first 12 months infants gradually learn to gain control over physical movements; however all senses are operating- hearing is acute but vision is poor

Gross motor skills

Gross Motor Skills

  • Three months- roll over

  • Four months- lifts head up

  • Five months- sits without support

  • Six months-stands up while holding on

  • Nine months- walks with assistance

  • Twelve months- walks well unassisted

Fine motor skills

Fine motor skills

  • Three months- grasps objects and is able to follow object movements with eyes (tracking)

  • Six months- grasps using palm and fingers

  • Nine months- grasps using fingers and thumb

Cognitive milestones

Cognitive Milestones

  • At birth- babies continue to gaze in the direction of moving objects that disappear

  • At Four months- babies have different sucking situations; want to suck for food or dummies for comfort. They are responsive to human faces and begin to repeat actions to get responses, e.g. smiling

  • At Eight months- very curious about their environment and are able to coordinate sensory information, they use their mouth as a major information gatherer

  • At 12 months- pass toy to the other hand when offered a second object ( referred to as ‘crossing the midline’; as an important neurological development)

Language milestones

Language Milestones

Provide infants with a variety of language materials, include pictures, posters, displays, picture/story books, bilingual charts/books, songs, puppets, rhymes, poems, language games, music.

Interact with babies by:

  • Reading stories/ books with them

  • Playing a variety of sound for them to hear

  • Providing a secure, nurturing environment with face-to-face interaction

  • Using developmentally appropriate language to interact with them

Language milestones1

Language Milestones

  • At birth- babies can tune into the sounds of speech and respond to them. They cry to communicate

  • At three months- babies can laugh, coo and play with speech sounds. They have different cries for different problems

  • At eight months- babies begin to understand some single words, imitate sounds and begin to use body language, such as pointing

  • At twelve months- most babies have said their first words

Social and emotional milestones

Social and emotional milestones

  • By six weeks- babies respond to people with a smile

  • At four months- recognise and reach out to familiar faces and objects

  • At eight months- ‘separation anxiety’ The child is beginning to have self-awareness- an idea that they are a separate individual

  • At twelve months- babies repeat behaviours that get attention; jabbers continuously.

Emotional care of infants

Emotional Care of Infants

  • Page 36- One world for children

  • White board

  • DVD-”The whole child”-Babies are children too



Nappy Changing

  • Equipment needed prior to nappy change

    In groups develop a Nappy Changing Procedure

    Demonstrate Nappy Change to whole group

Bottle feeding

Bottle Feeding


  • Sterilisation

  • Making

  • Heating

  • Feeding


  • Storage

  • Heating

  • Feeding

Rest and sleep

Rest and Sleep

  • Flexible sleep routines

  • Individual infants needs met

  • Settling techniques

  • Partnership with parents

Sudden infant death syndrome sids

Sudden Infant Death SyndromeSIDS

Originally defined in 1969- Cot Death

Sudden death on an infant or a child that is unexpected and in which a post-mortem examination fails to demonstrate an adequate cause of death


  • Common between two and four months

  • Can occur to children under the age of 5 years

  • Occurs to breast and bottle fed babies

  • Can occur at all times of the day or night, in cots, prams, car seats and bassinets

    Group work-

    “develop a poster designed to prevent SIDS”

Why babies are at risk

Why babies are at risk?

  • Suffocated under bedding

  • Chocked by sucking on toys or other objects

  • Caught between the side of the cot and the mattress

  • Strangled on cords and ribbons

    Safe sleeping positions:

  • Place the baby on their back to sleep

  • Place their feet at the end of the cot

  • Tuck in bedding securely so bedding is not loose, do not use dooners, bumpers and pillows

  • Keep the baby’s head uncovered- no hats, hoods or rugs

  • Keep the home smoke free

Further information :

Care for babies chccn5c


Growth and Development

  • Babies grow rapidly in the first year of life

  • Birth weight doubles by the end of the year

  • Length increases by about 50%

  • Breast Milk or Formula important for the first 12 months

  • Introduce solids between 4-6 months

  • The introduction of solids to an infant’s diet is dependent on nutritional, physiological and developmental factors

Is baby ready for solids

Is baby ready for solids?

  • Can hold head up

  • Signs of hunger and don’t settle after the milk feed

  • Chews on hands and toys

  • Sudden waking during the night

  • The baby’s mouth opens as a spoon approaches, mouth closes on spoon and most of the food stays in the mouth then moves to the back of the throat for swallowing

Introducing solids mchc

Introducing SolidsMCHC

The following is a guide as babies are individuals and learn to eat at different rates. Research influences current practices.

  • 4-6 months- smooth, mashed infant rice cereal, fruit and vegetables. Teaspoon to tablespoon approach.

  • 6-9 months-finely diced meat and chicken can be added. Fruit and vegetables mashed

  • 8 months-encourage drinking from a cup

  • 9-12 months-Finger foods can be introduced. Chunky textures encourage chewing

Element 3 settle new arrivals

Element 3Settle New Arrivals

  • Types of child care services

  • Orientation Process:

    Child Care Services have a comprehensive orientation process and policy this allows time for the Centre Staff to become familiar with individual needs of the infant

    Discuss examples of information likely to be gathered

Settling into child care

Settling into Child Care

  • Responding to signs of distress-

  • Being friendly and reassuring to the child’s parents

  • Discussing parent’s expectations

  • Allowing child to bring something special from home

  • Ensuring the infant has all their own comforters e.g. dummies or a teddy

  • Offering physical comfort

  • Familiar and consistent staff

  • Talking in a reassuring voice

  • Taking the child outside the business of the room

  • Finding a game or activity to play with or visualise

  • Establishing a ritual for the beginning of the day- wave goodbye at a window

  • Encourage parents to spend as much time as they require at the centre

  • Acknowledge the parents feelings

  • Reassuring parents

Element 4 provide an environment that promotes security for the child

Element 4Provide an environment that promotes security for the child

While it is vital for caregivers to develop and maintain nurturing relationships with infants, we must ensure that the environment in which the infant is spending time is safe and secure through:

  • Providing good quality child care

  • Supervising adequately

  • Checking the environment for hazards

  • Medication administration

  • Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

  • High quality experiences to extend infant’s Development

What children are learning in the first years of life

What Children are learning in the first years of life?

  • An incredible number of skills with body and hands. Learning to control the body, particularly the hands, is one of the most challenging, developmental tasks of the first few years

  • How the world works. In their play, under threes are figuring out laws of gravity, weight , motion and mass through endless self-directed experiments

  • Communication Skills. Young children are learning how to give information, ask questions, convey needs, wants and feelings through language as well as non-verbal cues

  • Outlook towards other people. Children learn that adults can be trusted, that they care, that they will try to help when help is needed and that they are fun to be with

  • A concept of self. Self concept has a major impact on development; it is critical that children develop a positive picture of themselves

Environments for babies

Environments for Babies


Infants need to be exposed to sensory experiences that allow them to investigate and discover their world

Care for babies chccn5c

In groups discuss what could be provided to in relation to the senses below:



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