Relationship with Children Cases

Part B – Case studies

Student instructions

Consider each of the below situations then answer the questions or complete the tasks that follow.

To answer questions accurately, you may refer to applicable legislation including the National Quality Standard and Education and Care Services National Regulations, along with the Belonging, Being and Becoming – The Early Years Learning Framework, Early Childhood Australia Code of Ethics, policies and procedures common to early childhood education and care services, position descriptions detailing an educator’s duty of care responsibilities, and/or other sources such as professional readings along with the course textbook and identified key resources.

Ensure you acknowledge and cite your sources accordingly. This is important whether you use your own words or quote the author’s words. For more information on referencing and plagiarism, refer to the ‘Academic reference guide’ in the Student Handbook.

When referring to early childhood education and care service policies and procedures or position descriptions, please submit with your assessment to support your answer.


Case studies


Case study 1

Nasir (8 months) has just been left at an early childhood education and care service by his mother. He is crying and very upset. Emma, Nasir’s primary caregiver, sits with him on her lap. She cuddles him and gently rubs his back. ‘I know you are upset because mummy has gone. She’ll come back after lunch.’ She continues to gently cuddle him.

After a short while Emma points and asks, ‘Would you like to go and see the mobile?’  She moves over towards a mobile which reflects the light shining through a nearby window. ‘Look at the colours, Nasir’ she says touching the mobile with her hand. ‘Can you reach the mobile too?’ she says looking at Nasir. Soon Nasir has stopped crying and is ready to join the other children.


Complete the following:

Outline the positive communication strategies Emma used to respond to Nasir’s anxiety and distress, and that ultimately helped him transition into care.


Identify the nonverbal and verbal communication strategies Emma used.










This question is in two parts. Please answer both a) and b) below.


Identify where in the case study you notice Emma providing a choice to Nasir.

Briefly explain why you think Emma attempted to involve Nasir in decision making from such a young age.


In your own words, briefly explain why you think Emma may be “expecting” this kind of behaviour from Nasir? In your answer state whether you think Emma responded appropriately to Nasir’s anxiety and distress.


Case study 2

Chris, the educator, is organising the children in the 3-5 year old room to go outside to play. He says to a small group of children playing with clay, ‘Would you like to pack the clay away now, please?’  Cooper (aged 4 years 6 months) says, ‘No thanks!’

The service does not offer a simultaneous indoor and outdoor program, therefore all children are to transition to the outdoor area.

Complete the following:

Why do you think Cooper said no to Chris?

What could Chris say to Cooper to encourage his cooperation to pack away the clay before going outside?

What might Chris say to the other children to acknowledge their choice to pack away the clay?

What two choices might Chris offer Cooper so that he can make his own decision about his play?

What natural consequence might occur if Chris allows the children outdoors without packing away the clay?

Would you consider Cooper’s behaviour as concerning? Why or why not?

Make a list of actions you would take to guide Cooper’s behaviour.


Case study 3

A small group of children were playing in the home corner when Corrine, the educator, began to sneeze and couldn’t stop. Harley (aged 2 years and 11 months) stopped his play and looked at Corrine. He paused for a moment then suggested that she go to the Doctor.

Corrine stated ‘Yes. That is a good idea – which way do I go to get to the Doctor?’ Harley pointed to a chair which she then sat on. Mason (aged 3) stood by and observed for a few seconds before grabbing a pretend medicine bottle (a salt shaker). He then placed it up to her mouth. Mason praised Corrine when she pretended to drink it. ‘Good boy’ Mason said and repeated this action a few more times before giving Corrine a great big smile.

‘I got a sore eye’ Harley said and sat down next to Corrine. Corrine showed concern on her face and responded by saying ‘so, you have a sore eye – how did that happen?’ He smiled and explained to her that a butterfly flew into his eye last week. Corrine responded ‘Oh dear – a butterfly flew into your eye and now it is sore. I am glad you have come to the Doctors then.’ Harley nodded. Barry (aged 2 years 5 months) came over rubbing his tummy and joined the patient area.

Doctor Hugo (aged 3 years) was busy assessing everyone; he informed Corrine that she was able to go home and advised her that he had called an ambulance for Barry. He then stated ‘I have been in an ambulance. It took me to hospital.’


Complete the following:

Identify where in the case study you notice the following things. Identify at least one example for each point.

When does Corrine use nonverbal (body) language to show Harley she is listening?

When does Barry use nonverbal (body) language to show he is unwell as part of his play?

When does Corrine use active listening?

When does Corrine use an open-ended question?

When does Corrine involve Harley in decision making and planning?

Hugo shares a personal story with Corrine. Write a sentence that you could use to start a conversation with Hugo about this.


Describe how you do, or would participate in children’s play. In your answer identify what should be considered before educators’ join in children’s games and play, and whilst they are a play partner.  

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