Child & Young People

Huw Birdsey unit 343 Transitions & Development

What are transitions

Transitions are changes that take place in our life; changes that move us from one stage to another, for example from being single to being married, or from being unemployed to being in work.
Transitions are an essential part of growing up and the most important ones happen when we are babies and young children.

???….it is important to understand a child….in the context of their life, to recognize and understand the impact of any transitions they may be going through.??™

Experience of transitions
All of these transitions present the child with challenges. Of course, the child doesn??™t usually have to go through the transitions on his own; he will be supported by those around him at home or in day care, or in education or in our case residential care. However, the experience of going through the transition will depend on the kind of response and support he gets from those around him especially us his/her carer. We must also keep in mind the fact that a child??™s early experiences of transitions will have a big effect on how he handles transitions at later stages of his life.

Types of transitions


Puberty is a major transition that all children at some point, will have to go through. It can be a difficult time for both sexes emotionally, socially and physically. Behaviour will change and so will their physical appearance, which may cause them to feel insecure, especially if they are female I have not noticed this so much in our home as we have not had females of this age, but the female who was with us was in her own surroundings urinating (nesting) in her bedroom but when she was going out took pride in how she looked. Peer approval will become increasingly important and may be related to physical development, the female and a male who recently joined our home tried to have a relationship but this was not allowed by us, but she in her actions and the things she was doing flirting, showing off and pride in her appearance was noticed by staff of the home when we told both parties that a relationship could not happen the atmosphere in the home changed and it made our role as carers more difficult.
Males may show more aggressive behaviour as their hormone levels increase this has happened to the younger young person in our home as he becomes embarrassed about it but we have again overcome this with therapeutics??™ showing him DVDs and doing projects with him, females may become insecure about males may become insecure about late development or embarrassed about early development. Both sexes will be very aware of their changes and will compare their own rate of development with that of their friends. Most, reach puberty around the same time, some develop earlier and some later. Boys who develop more quickly are often found to be more popular and independent. Girls, however, if developing earlier than their friends tend to get teased and have a more negative experience. The development of breasts can be very embarrassing for a girl, as it may bring a lot of unwanted comments and attention, not only from boys, but also from other girls who may be jealous of the attention the girl is getting, or may be teasing and gossiping. This can lower a person??™s confidence and make them feel very uncomfortable. Changing for sports in a communal area could become an issue with others girls staring, and may make the young person stay away from sports, preferring to go sick, rather than endure the unwanted attention. Starting periods can also be embarrassing. This was the case of the female in our care as she never wanted to do sport activities especially with the male young person??™s so we most of the time had female carers do the activities where we thought embarrassment would occur and this seemed to help the situation with others girls staring, and may make the young person stay away from sports, preferring to go sick, rather than endure the unwanted attention. Starting periods can also be embarrassing we seemed to alleviate this by having pads and tampons in the toilet areas to enable free access and not cause embarrassment to the female young person??™s when they needed them.

Family Brake Up:

A family brake up can be really stressful for the child and may even influence the development as the child could get very upset, could lash out at people, could go very quiet, could stop eating and could even stop talking as they may think that they had something to do with their parents/carers braking up, a new male has just joined the home and I have become his Keyworker, his main carer (his mother) has MS and is was not coping with his behaviour where they lived constantly getting into trouble and giving her stress which did not help her situation so she decided to put him into care for not only his wellbeing and safety but for hers as well, he constantly would have outbursts and crying saying it was his mothers fault he was in care making her upset, even though his natural father was still in touch , amicable with the situation he never blamed him and we were constantly telling him why he was in care, we were not trying to be his parents.

New Partner:

If a parent/carer gets a new partner it may influence the child??™s development as the child may not like the new person in their life and they may go very quiet, could even stop talking, could get very upset and could get violent and again this happened with the new young male person in our home as he also told his mother that she had put him into care so she could just spend time with him and she did not want him around to spoil the relationship, we again were there for him telling him that this was not the situation and he needed to realize himself why he was in care as that was the only way he could improve his situation and the way he was feeling.


If there??™s a bereavement in the family it may cause problems with the child??™s development very similar to the other two above as the child could get very upset, could go very quiet, could stop eating and could even stop talking, they may not understand what??™s happened with the person who has died, why they have not been told with the rest of the family and been told separately, also as they have been in care with us they have not seen that particular relation especially if the relative is older, therefore it is important for us as their main carers we read their family files, care plans and try and have regular visits to those they feel close to especially grandparents one of our male young person is especially close to his granddad and we encourage and organise as many visits with him.

With all of these you may notice a change of the child??™s work and also in the child.

As for the work it may become untidy, unreadable, may not even make any since or may not even get done at all.
As for the child there may show sings like the ones above.


Some people may have health problem like allergies, brittle bones disease,
(Osteogenesis imperfecta) may not have the use of their arms or legs or may even have problems with their eyes.? 
If the child has any of these then the child as well as the parent/carer may have trouble with their development in life especially if we have to do physical restraints therefore it is important that as carers we read their personal files especially the facts about their medical history and things that happen whilst in our care for future restraints, such as one of our males has a plate and pin in his arm, in order that we know not to cause further harm to this.

This could be due to allergies, which would mean having, too watch what they eat and what types of food the child may come into contact with one of our male young person??™s is a piscaterion only likening fish not meat. The child or parent/carer may have to carry an
Epi- Pen with them at ALL times just in case they have a anaphylactic reaction to whatever, two of our young people are on medication and also have asthma pumps so it is important that when we go out or on excursions we know and have their correct medication with us, also we must carry out the correct procedures in our workplace for administering and control of their required drugs.

Leaving School/Care:

When young people leave school they worry about doing enough education having enough qualifications etc therefore it is important that we as carers make sure they get the best education that we can deliver, we at Landskare Childcare make sure this is done at the earliest opportunity by doing the Boxall Report with Key Worker and Teacher to ensure that the education is at the correct level for the child/young person that needs it and to make his/her stress levels less in this worrying but important part of their life, we also put into place any future further education needs that they feel they want to pursue in the future this is picked up from their reports and conversations with the young persons, and put into place with the local collages/further education places within our areas.
There will inevitably become a time when the young person leaves our care and this transition is most likely to be the toughest for the young person (apart from losing a loved one) as they have been very well looked after by trained and qualified persons who put the Childs needs first sometimes before their own, and we as carers realize this so we put into place a programme called outreach which we will carry out as put together with the local authority they come under and their social worker as it is all to do with funding, we visit them help them with any problems they encounter such as rent issues, form filling, and other basic needs but it gives them the confidence to see that we have not just abandoned them as they feel they have in the past.


There are many factors that can influence a child and young person??™s development, particularly in relation to their background. ?  The formative years can be termed as crucial in regards to development and any major setback can create many problems for the future.
Being part of a social care system through neglect, physical/emotional abuse and loss of parent can prove difficult for children and although this can largely be a positive experience for many, it can also lead to problems within all areas of development.

Naturally parents want to see their children do well. Sometimes though in an effort to keep kids safe, parents inadvertently hold their children back from exploring the world around them we have to do this as carers due to where they are why they are there and the above factors, lessening their chances to learn and progress. While it is understandable to want to shelter children from harm parents/carers who are over protective can sometimes limit their child??™s potential. Ideally, children should be given increasing amounts of freedom as they grow and mature, allowing them to gradually learn things and meet new people, increasing their physical, emotional and social development whilst any child in our care at Landskare Child Care we pride ourselves to achieving this as their main carers.
And more importantly improving and maintaining positive relationships with them throughout their time in care and making use of all of the other agencies within our grasp to help us achieve this we must never be afraid to let them know that if they are worried about anything big or small we will always be there for them and help them ride out the waves until they have calmed and by being good carers applying to company standards and policies of care should ensure they come out of care being the better persons and give them a good start in life.

HW Birdsey