Identify the individual needs of children in own setting

Qualification: NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Educator
Unit: Unit 3.13: Support children with additional needs
Learning outcome: Be able to support the additional needs of children
Assessment criteria: Identify the individual needs of children in own setting


Every child is unique and has individual needs that must be acknowledged, understood, and met in order to ensure they reach their full potential. As an Early Years practitioner, it’s important to have a clear understanding of how to identify the individual needs of children in your own setting.

Observation as a Tool for Identification

One of the most effective ways to identify the individual needs of children is through observation. Observing children’s behavior can provide insight into what is motivating their actions. For example, does a 3-year-old child appear anxious when transitioning from one activity to another? If so, this could indicate that they may need more time and support during transitions or additional guidance on how to manage their emotions. Additionally, by observing how children interact with each other or respond in different situations, practitioners can gain insight into their social and emotional skillsets.


Communication as a Tool for Identification

Another key tool for identifying individual needs is communication. Talking directly with children about their thoughts and feelings provides practitioners with invaluable information about what they need in order to feel supported. It’s also important for practitioners to communicate regularly with parents or guardians so that any concerns can be addressed quickly and effectively. This open dialogue provides practitioners with a comprehensive view of the child’s home life which can help inform decisions regarding how best to meet the child’s individual needs

Assessment as a Tool for Identification

Additionally, assessments are an important tool for identifying individual needs, as they allow practitioners to accurately measure each child’s physical, cognitive, social and emotional development against appropriate milestones. Assessments should be carried out regularly throughout the year in order to track progress and address any issues that might arise early on so that new strategies can be put in place if necessary. Practitioners should also use assessments as opportunities to celebrate successes and recognize achievements so that children are motivated and encouraged throughout their learning journey.



Identifying the individual needs of children is an essential task for Early Years practitioners as it helps them provide tailored support so that each child reaches their full potential. By taking an observational approach combined with regular communication between parents/guardians and assessment tracking throughout the year, practitioners will be able to better understand each child’s specific strengths and weaknesses which will enable them plan accordingly within their own settings. This will ensure all children receive the care they deserve while enabling them reach success both inside and outside the classroom environment!

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