Support for early years social and emotional development

It is helpful to understand that all behaviour is a form of communication. There is always a reason for the way young children behave, even though the triggers may not be obvious or even visible via observation. Behaviour is the communication of unmet needs, therefore practitioners should take time to unpick and understand what the unmet needs are that may be impacting on the child’s social and emotional development.

Practitioners also need to be aware that certain behaviours occur as part of the typical pattern of a child’s social and emotional development, and how this can be affected by adverse experiences and traumatic events.

View and download SEMH and Behaviour Toolkit 

Further support for parents and practitioners:

The Early Years SEMH Project

Pre-school children who have been referred by their setting to the Local Authority Early Years Team for inclusion support may also be eligible to participate in the Early Years SEMH (Social, Emotional and Mental Health) Project, with additional support and advice being provided by the SEMH Inclusion Service.

For further information, advice and support, including details of training we can offer, please contact