Healthcare Assignment: Significance of Well Being & Wellness for Early Childhood
Task: For this healthcare assignment, you will use the following scenario to examine issues around children’s wellness and wellbeing to determine appropriate strategies for early childhood staff. Consider the following scenario then use the template to complete the assessment. Discuss the socialisation (families, peers, media) and environmental influences (physical aspects of the environment), as well as the equity issues related to children’s wellness and wellbeing in the case study. For each area, discuss how children’s wellness and wellbeing could be addressed and promoted by the early childhood staff and leadership:
Bella is a four year old girl and is the youngest of four children. There is a two-year age difference between each of the children. The family lives in government housing in an inner Sydney suburb. The house is a moderate sized three-bedroom house. Bella shares a bedroom with her 12-year old sister, and her two brothers share another bedroom. They have a small backyard and their house is situated on a busy road. Bella’s mother, Sarah, does not feel comfortable taking the children to the local park as it is often defaced with graffiti or vandalised.
Bella’s father is a nurse at the local hospital. He often works extra shifts each week for a nursing agency to earn extra income so that they can buy their own home. Bella’s mother, Sarah, has been a stay-at-home mother while the children have been growing up. Sarah has recently enrolled in a TAFE course to begin a qualification in aged care and attends three days a week. Bella attends a long day care service three times a week while Sarah is at TAFE.
Bella finds it difficult to get up from the floor after group time. During outdoor play Bella finds it difficult to run and gets breathless quickly. Bella’s teacher told her mother, Sarah, that Bella prefers to sit on the bench and watch the other children play rather than join in with the play. After a short time of attending day care Bella started crying on the mornings she was to attend day care and refuse to get dressed. Bella told Sarah that other children in the long day care centre had begun to call her names and make negative comments about her weight.
The staff are becoming increasingly concerned about Bella’s weight and the effect it is having on her general health. Bella normally has a packed lunch from home consisting of sweet biscuits, chocolate, and crisps. At morning tea time, the long day care provides the children fresh fruit and vegetables, but Bella will not normally choose to eat anything. At drop-off time, Bella’s mother, Sarah, has told the staff that Bella loves to eat sugary cereals in the morning, especially those that come in the brightly coloured boxes she sees on TV. Drop off time is normally a very busy and rushed time at the centre, so staff has not been able to discuss these issues with Sarah in any detail. Staff have expressed concerns to Sarah about Bella’s eating habits at pick-up time. Sarah says that she likes to ensure that her children have a meal they enjoy and cannot afford for them to waste any food. It is difficult for the family to afford fresh healthy foods on their single income.
This healthcare assignment analyzes the case study of Bella, a four-years-old child. She has three siblings and is the youngest child of the family. Sarah, Bella’s Mother has enrolled herself to a TAFE course and being youngest child she prefer to leave Bella at a long day care service. The Teacher’s who work at day care service has identified that Bella is facing problem related to Obesity. She is experiencing breathing problem and struggle in standing up while engaging in physical activities. They have also observed that Bella is not following normal eating habit which is affecting her health. It has been observed that her mother cannot afford to buy healthy food for their children.Her mother also tells to the staff of the day care that she does not allow children to go out in Local Parks because she had observed vandalized activities in park. As per the given case, Bella requires not only physical strength but also she need emotional support. Thus, this report will highlight significance of well being and wellness for early childhood.
As per views of Rettew (2019), wellbeing as well as wellness is important for every person in order to maintain proper mental and physical health. Wellbeing and wellness among human beings assists them in achieving positive aspect of living healthy life. In addition to this Lekshmi, Sreeja&Premini (2018),also share their views that well being among children is very crucial to understand. As a result, it requires to be adoptedby parents and teachers who are the early educators. Also, they must comprehend emotions and physical requirements of their child and need to support them accordingly. According to Miller &Lumeng(2018),now-a-days obesity is identified as common health problem among children. This is a critical medical problem which increases risk of other health problem and diseases which includes diabetes, heart disease, cancers and high blood pressure.
Identify TheSocialisation Influences
The children who are facing socialization influenceswitnesses poor physical and mental health. Self esteem of children also affects a lot on well being and wellness. Friends as well as families are main factors of socialization as choices of food among children are primarily influenced by them only. Family plays a vital role in selection of food for their child. Family members especially parents are responsible for developing eating habits among children. As per views of Raval& Walker, (2019) socialization influences can be segregated into two parts. One is primary while other is secondary. Primary socialization involves parents, sibling and grandparents who care for their child. They are the primary influencers thus influences eating habit of the child from the very beginning. On the other hand, secondary socialization involves friends, peers, the media and other people like staff of nursery and teachers.
According to present case study, the family is not giving proper attention on Bella and keeps on ignoring her health problems. Her father is busy in hisjob to performday and night shifts because of financial concerns. He aims to build a new home for his family and to attain this objective he is not able to pay any attention on his children. He is unaware of Bella’s condition. Also, Bella is highly influenced from TV advertisement of sugary cereals which contains colorful bright packaging. She only prefers to eat this food and does not like to consume healthy diet. Going through the whole case, Bella is getting influenced from both primary and secondary socialization influencers. According to Lekshmi, Sreeja&Premini (2018),obesity among children occurs due to advertisement from different external sources which encourage them to consume unhealthy and special kind of food. Childhood obesity can lead to impact directly on life of a child and their ambitions.
Strategies to be adopted by EC Staff
It is important for staff of early childhood to implement strategies in order to prevent children from this problem before it turns into a serious issue. The staff must engage interest of child towards physical activities. Lee, Matthews & Park (2019), said that exercise is important for every individual especially children require high attention on physical activities. These activities foster their mood and lead them towards a stress free environment. As per views of Littlewood, Canfell& Walker (2020), obesity among children affects their health which can be caused due to different reason like lack of physical work, mental pressure as well as at different level such as household, individual or any community.
Staff ofearly childhood mustengage in activities to attract interest of children towards healthy consumption. Kandasamy, Ghandour&Kogan (2018), supports this statement and expresses their views that the crucial quality of being resilience must be present in a child. This will help to maintain good performances as well as healthy lifestyle. The staff and leaders must provoke children to develop this ability among them. This will help them to learn from mistakes as well as accept as well as apply advice and comments from teachers in their life. This quality will assist a child to stay persistent and dedicated in life. As per case study, Bella’s mother does not prefer healthy meal because she fears from wastage of food as Bella does not tend to eat healthy food. Early childhood staff by developing resilience quality in Bella can make her learn not to waste food and to maintain a healthy well being. Identify The Environmental Influences
Childrenhealth and well being is not only dependent on socialization influences but it also getsaffected a lot through environmental influences. It has been observed that children well being and wellness is affected by their physical environment. As per Alterman et.al., (2019) physical environment plays a vital role in children development. It has been noticed that children who reside in a noisy and overcrowded place are more emotional and introvert. They do not get open up with anyone easily. It directly influences on cognitive development of children.
In present study, Bella with her family is residing in a noisy and highly crowded place which is affecting her wellness and wellbeing. That is why she is not getting familiar with children of same age and staff of long day care service. She prefer to stay alone and quite as she is highly influenced from physical environment. She also decides not to go in long day care centre because other children tease her a lot. This creates a fear in mind of Bella about outer world and she is comfortable to live in her own premises. According to Rettew (2019),children who are exposed to loud noisy environment experiences high blood pressure at an early age. These children are not motivated to perform any challenges in life.
Strategy EC staff could use
Early childhood staff must implement strategy of mental activities among children. They must engage these children in activities which need mental and physical workout. Staff and leaders should encourage activities like play dough, storytelling, ice finds, and alphabet tree games in their centre. Performing these activities at long day care services children will able to develop power of recognition and mental skills.
As per Kandasamy, Ghandour&Kogan (2018),mental and physical activities helps children in developing better well being and wellness. The children feel confident and able to communicate well. In views of Douglas, Lennon & Scott (2017),natural light entails children to improve not only their health but also it helps them to attain wellbeing&wellness. The children are able to have a good sleep and live life free from agitation.
As per present case study, Bella is not able to express herself to her teacher and parents thatare due to environmental issue and this hinders her from well being and wellness. Her parents do not allow her to go to Local Park. So, by engaging interest of Bella in physical and mental activities held in day care centre will help her to consume bright natural light. This is good for her health and body. By application of mental activities by staff in long day care centre will prevent health and stress among children. After spending whole day in care centre Bella will stay positive at her home and noise near her residence will not impact much on her health.
Identify The Equity Issues
As per Lundy & Trawick-Smith (2020),equity issues are concerned with social justice and fairness among people. These issues focus on availing service among larger number of people. In present case, her mother is not comfortable to take out her children to Local Parks near their house. Some locals are involved in destruction and damage of parks property. She has observed Vandalism in Local Parks and she does not want her children to face such activities. Guardino, Largo-Wight &Hubbuch (2019),stated that Vandalism is a crime as it doesnot involve permission of owner for any action taken by people. Also, if vandalism takes placein front of children it will have a huge effect on their mentality. Parents in order to take care of their children must not make sure that they stay away from such activities. Bella and her siblings never go out with her mother to local parks. The social and equity issue here faced in Local Parks harasses her mother. This declines engagement of Bella in physical activities which she can perform in open area. She remains in house for a long time and doesnot consume natural light. Bella is facing equity and social justice issue due to activities undertaken in Local Parks.
Strategies which can be adopted by EC Staff
Early childhood staff must engage interest of children towards outdoor games. These outdoor games are helpful in contributing to wellness and well being of children. The long day care centre must include activities like Water balloon T-Ball, Hula hoop race & catch, mud painting and play float games in their play area. This will attract interest of children and will engage them to perform physical activities. According to views of Douglas, Lennon & Scott (2017), outdoor games create opportunity for children to learn and innovative things. It alsoboosts creativity level of children. The children who remains engaged with outdoor games develop their personality and builds positive attitude.
Raval& Walker (2019),expressestheirviews in context of prevailing culture of indoor games. Most parents now-a-days prefer to engage their children in indoor games. Children in early age are becoming physical unfit because of not getting engaged in outdoor games and activities. They are facing problem of obesity, improper eye sight and cardio vascular diseases. As per Zhao, Zhao & Zhao, (2018), playing outside creates opportunity for children to socialize. Fresh air and natural sunlight also provides aid to children in improving their mental health. Performing exercises and physical activities assists children in improving their well being and wellness.
This case study was all about creating wellbeing and wellness among children.It was analyzed by the given case that children wellbeing can be influenced by socialization, environmental and equity issues. Socialization in present case is identified as the main influences on children.Theparents and TV advertisements are regarded as the major aspect that has affected health and eating habit of Bella. It was discussed that childrenare highly influenced by these factors. Also, environmental issues included in this case were identified. Bella is living in noisy and highly crowded areas which distract her mental stability and ability to communicate with others. Equity & social justice has also been identified during analyses of this case. Bella is not allowed to go and play in Local Park area because of Vandalism. This hinders Bella to perform physical activities and as a result she is suffering from obesity.
Some strategies were suggested in this report regarding the issues identified in this case. It is suggested in the report that early childhood staff must engage children towards performing physical and mental activities. These children must perform activities to improve their well being and wellness. Also, it is suggested that these staff members must provoke children towards healthy eating habits. Wellness and well being among children can be created by promoting physical and mental activities in day care centre. Also, early childhood staff must engage children in executing meditation. The children who engages in meditation is able to control their emotions and stress. It is beneficial for children as it creates self awareness among them. This also provokes children towards healthy eating habits. Meditation is useful for children in growing years as it develops their mental and analytical thinking.
Books and Journal
Alterman, T., Tsai, R., Ju, J., & Kelly, K. M. (2019). Trust in the Work Environment and Cardiovascular Disease Risk: Findings from the Gallup-Sharecare Well-Being Index.
International journal of environmental research and public health. 16(2). 230.
Douglas, O., Lennon, M., & Scott, M. (2017). Green space benefits for health and well-being: A life-course approach for urban planning, design and management. Cities. 66. 53-62.
Guardino, C., Largo-Wight, E., &Hubbuch, C. (2019). Teacher and student perceptions of an outdoor classroom. Journal of Outdoor and Environmental Education. 22(2). 113-126.
Kandasamy, V., Ghandour, R. M., & Kogan, M. D. (2018). Parental perception of flourishing in school-aged children: 2011–2012 National Survey of Children's Health. Healthcare assignment Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics. 39(6). 497-507.
Lee, M. H., Matthews, A. K., & Park, C. (2019). Determinants of health-related quality of life among mothers of children with cerebral palsy. Journal of pediatric nursing. 44. 1-8.
Lekshmi, M. S., Sreeja, I., &Premini, S. (2018). Emotional intelligence and well being among adolescents. International Journal of Nursing Education and Research. 6(2). 145-150.
Littlewood, R., Canfell, O. J., & Walker, J. L. (2020). Interventions to prevent or treat childhood obesity in M?ori & Pacific Islanders: a systematic review. BMC public health. 20. 1-14.
Lundy, A., & Trawick-Smith, J. (2020). Effects of active outdoor play on preschool children’s on-task classroom behavior. Early Childhood Education Journal, 1-9.
Miller, A. L., &Lumeng, J. C. (2018). Pathways of association from stress to obesity in early childhood. Obesity. 26(7). 1117-1124.
Raval, V. V., & Walker, B. L. (2019). Unpacking ‘culture’: Caregiver socialization of emotion and child functioning in diverse families. Developmental Review. 51. 146-174.
Rettew, D. C. (2019). Better than better: the new focus on Well-being in child psychiatry. Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Clinics. 28(2). 127-135.
Zhao, F., Zhao, G., & Zhao, Z. (2018). Investigation of the effect of orthokeratology lenses on quality of life and behaviors of children. Eye & contact lens. 44(5). 335-338.