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Programmes to support young children's development at home

A range of programmes and interventions are available to support parents and carers to aid their children’s learning and development at home in the early years.  These may involve visiting families at home or providing an early learning programme for parents to support their child’s needs at home.  Some are specifically for young children with special needs and disabilities and others are mainstream services available to everyone.

Programmes include:

Family workers in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead’s Children and Young People Disability Service who provide a home based teaching programme for young children with a range of needs which is based on a individualised 'small steps' approach to learning. Early Support resources such as the Developmental Journals are used to celebrate, record and support children's development and to identify areas where extra help may be needed.

The Shine Outreach team offer National Autistic Society training on the Early Bird Plus Programme. This is a three-month programme for parents/carers of young children (4-8 years) with an ASD and for the professionals supporting them.  It involves eight group sessions and two home visits.  The programme empowers parents/carers and encourages a consistent approach between home and school by training parents and professionals together.  The programme will help participants to understand the child’s Autism; improve communication with the child; develop strategies to pre-empt problem behaviours and/or manage those which do occur.

Berkshire Sensory Consortium Service support young children who have educational needs arising from a diagnosed hearing, visual or multi-sensory impairment.   Support includes a key worker service, pre school groups, parent workshops and advice, teaching and training of parents and pupils to support learning in the home. 

Children's Centres within the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead also offer various support to families with young children.  These include:

  • Transitions Groups to provide support for children who are starting nursery and their parents. These are designed for all children but would also support children with additional needs.  
  • The Parents as First Teachers programme, which provides targeted support for parents of children up to the age of 3 years.  It is an early intervention programme that focuses on family strengths and learning about your child’s development.  Qualified staff work alongside parents, usually within their family home. 
  • Speech and language drop in sessions are available in various centres for children from birth to the end of nursery.
  • Sessions for parents and children with additional needs such as Twinkle, Twinkle are also on offer.

Information is available on the Royal Borough website about the many other activities available.

The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead's Parenting Service offers a range of 'Triple P' Parenting Programmes for parents with children and teenagers. These are proven to support parents/carers to develop problem solving strategies and encourage more positive family relationships.  Stepping Stones Triple P is for parents with children between the ages of two and ten diagnosed with a learning or physical disability, including ASD and Down’s Syndrome.  Parents attend group-based or individual sessions where they learn methods for supporting their child’s learning, establishing family routines and managing their child's behaviour.  Further information on parenting programmes and a self referral form is available on the Royal Borough website.

Health visitors also provide practical support and health advice for families and young children up to the age of five-years-old.   This is a universal service but Health visitors would also work with other agencies if you or a member of your family has special needs or a disability to offer you support, advice and information where special help may be required.  Health visitors can answer your questions and give advice on all sorts of topics including breast-feeding, sleep, immunisation and teething.  Health visitors also carry out health and development reviews to check children’s physical development milestones between ages two and three as part of the universal Healthy Child Programme.   This review is being integrated with the Early Years Foundation Stage progress check.

Berkshire Healthcare Foundation Trust provide the Children and Young People’s Integrated Therapies to provide specialist services to support the development and learning of young children including Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Speech and Language Therapy and specialist Dietetic services for children throughout Berkshire.