1.1 Describe routine physical care needs for children in relation to: nappy changing, toilet training, washing and bath time, skin, teeth and hair, meal times

QualificationLevel 3 Diploma for the Early Years Educator
Unit: 1.3 Support physical care routines for children
Learning outcome: 1. Understand the physical care needs of children
Assessment criteria: 1.1 Describe routine physical care needs for children in relation to: nappy changing, toilet training, washing and bath time, skin, teeth and hair, meal times

  • As well as performing and supporting with physical care needs, practitioners should use these activities as opportunities for children to learn and acquire independence
  • Nappy changing
    • Disposable apron and gloves (Personal Protective Equipment – PPE) should be used to prevent the spread of infection
    • Hands should be washed and changing mat cleaned before and after
    • Everything that will be needed should be close by so that the practitioner does not leave the child unattended
    • The practitioner should talk to the child whilst changing
    • Soiled nappies should be disposed of in a designated bin
    • Records should be made, where required
  • Toilet training
    • No set age for toilet training but usually started around ages 2 to 2 and a half
    • Indicators that the child is ready to be toilet trained include knowing and/or communicating when they have a soiled nappy or when they are peeing and being dry for longer than 1 hour
    • Deciding when to toilet train should be in partnership with parents/carers
    • The potty or toilet should be introduced to the child and an explanation of how it is used
    • The child should be encouraged to use the potty or toilet after meals
    • Praise should be provided when the child uses the toilet or potty
    • More information on the NHS website
  • Washing and bath time
    • Children should wash hands several times a day including after using the toilet, before eating or preparing food and after playing outdoors
    • Faces should be washed with a soft cloth, particularly after meals – use a downward stroke and tell the child what you will do
    • Some practitioners may be required to carry out bathing and showering – this should be in collaboration with parents and carers
    • Due consideration should be taken to prevent scalding, drowning or slips/falls
  • Skincare
    • Good skincare reduces the likelihood of infection, soreness and potential long-term damage
    • Barrier cream may be used to prevent nappy rash
    • Suncream should be applied when a child participates in outdoor activities in hot weather
  • Teeth
    • Diet should not contain foods or drinks that are high in sugar or acidity
    • Teeth should be brushed twice per day
    • Children will need support to brush their teeth properly until they are between 6 and 9 years old
  • Hair
    • Some practitioners may be responsible for brushing and styling hair (e.g. home-based carers and nannies)
    • Practitioners should know how to identify headlice – if spotted, the child’s parent/carer should be informed and a notice put up to inform other parents/carers
  • Mealtimes
    • Hands should be washed before meals
    • Meals should take into account individual children’s dietary needs
    • Meals should be nutritious and enjoyable
    • Children should be encouraged to try new tastes and develop independence
    • Children should be supervised whilst eating

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    Study Bullets ⇒ Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Educator ⇒ Unit 1.3: Support physical care routines for children ⇒ 1.1 Describe routine physical care needs for children in relation to: nappy changing, toilet training, washing and bath time, skin, teeth and hair, meal times