Describe potential effects of transition and significant events on a child’s life

Qualification: NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Educator
Unit: Unit 1.4: Promote children’s emotional well-being
Learning outcome: Understand the needs of children during transition and significant events
Assessment criteria: Describe potential effects of transition and significant events on a child’s life

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There can be a range of short- and long-term effects on children when they experience transition or significant life events. These can include emotional effects such as sadness, anger, anxiety or depression, behavioural changes such as becoming withdrawn or clingy, and even physical effects such as a loss of appetite and a weakened immune system.

In the short term, a child may experience some of the following effects:

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  • sadness
  • crying
  • anger
  • aggression
  • withdrawal
  • loss of appetite
  • regression
  • clinginess
  • inability to concentrate.

In the long term, a child may experience some of the following effects:

  • depression
  • anxiety
  • decrease in self-confidence or self-esteem
  • inappropriate behaviour
  • self-harm
  • bullying
  • breakdown in relationships or inability to establish meaningful relationships
  • underachievement.

In addition to the emotional effects, children may also experience physical effects such as a weakened immune system. This is because stress can affect the immune system, making a child more susceptible to becoming ill. Other physical effects might include disturbed sleeping patterns or a loss of appetite.

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