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Each chapter is important to the story.
Every person has a role to play—parents, grandparents, aunties, uncles, community members, educators, and service providers.
Read Queensland’s Early Childhood Development story to learn how you can help children grow well.
Children feel loved and secure in warm, caring relationships.
Loving relationships help children to feel safe. Showing them they are loved builds their confidence, ability to bounce back when things get tough and eagerness to learn.
Regular routines for sleep, play and meals reassures children that they can trust their world.
When you encourage children to talk about their feelings, listen to them and respond, you help them to connect with you, and feel valued.
Talking with children about everyday experiences and celebrating their achievements, builds their language. This helps them to speak up and participate in everyday life.
Listening and responding to children builds their language and social skills.
When you listen, they learn to listen to you.
Having more language means children can better express their feelings.
Holding and cuddling your child releases good hormones that support their growth.
You can connect emotionally with your child by talking, smiling, hugging, and laughing.
Children thrive in safe, healthy and positive environments.
Healthy homes and communities are places and spaces where children can safely grow and develop.
Providing a variety of nutritious foods and water gives children fuel to grow strong bodies and brains. Good eating habits and regular active movement are important to start in the early years.
Environments free from toxic substances are also important for growing bodies and brains.
Every step through a child’s world—from home and into the community—brings opportunities for physical, social and emotional development.
Children can explore confidently when families create a healthy balance between safety and freedom.
Children love to help prepare meals. Did you know this can help them develop good eating habits and reduce the risk of health problems later in life?
Children need to explore the world around to grow physically and mentally strong.
Living in Queensland means using sun protection, hats and shade, and drinking water , to keep cool and safe.
Children are learning everywhere, every day.
From their first moments, children are learning, experiencing the world through their senses and interacting with the important people in their lives.
It is these important people who show children how to communicate with others.
When children play they have fun. They also build physical, cultural, social and emotional skills, and discover more about themselves, others and the environment they live in.
We are a diverse state with natural and built environments: from the outback to the rainforest, rivers and the sea. We live in remote areas, regional towns and large cities, all areas with rich cultural heritage.
Wherever families live, it is important for children to play, explore and learn—at home and in the wider world.
Play is essential for learning. Everyday experiences like shopping, cleaning or gardening are opportunities for children to play and learn.
Positive communication builds brains. Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, you can share conversations, stories and songs with children.
Children’s sense of belonging is built through strong connections to family, culture and community.
Knowing who you are and where you belong—with family, culture and community—is important.
When children and families feel connected to community, they find friends and develop a sense of belonging and wellbeing.
Queenslanders have diverse cultural backgrounds, languages, values and beliefs.
When everyone is recognised, feels included and welcomed, we build a positive sense of belonging and encourage children to embrace and celebrate the diversity around them.
This creates a shared understanding and respect for identity.
Having friends and feeling connected to community is good for families.
Local festivals, community gardens, sporting and cultural activities all offer opportunities to connect to community and belong.
Participating in community life builds wellbeing and provides opportunities to share culture.
What family or cultural traditions are important to you and your children? How can you share these with friends or neighbours?
Children and families thrive when communities and services are supportive and meet their needs.
Children and families do best when supported by a stable network of connections in the early years.
Making the most of the services and support available can make a big difference to the lives of children and families.
When services value and include the voices of children and families in planning and delivery, we are providing the most responsive and relevant programs to support them in navigating the rough and the smooth times.
Families have access to services which can work with them to give their children a great start in life.
Ask your local child health nurse, GP or early childhood teacher or educator about how you can make the most of early childhood, health and family support services in your local area.
When every Queensland child grows well, we all do better.
We can all contribute to making sure that families have access to supportive relationships, nutritious food and healthy environments for their children.
There is a role for everyone in providing opportunities for learning and enjoyment, supportive local services, and a sense of community.
Every interaction matters—big or small—because it can have an impact on a child’s wellbeing and whether or not they reach their full potential in later life.
By recognising the importance of the early years and their lasting influence, we can take action together to give children the best start to life.
When everyone contributes, everyone benefits. Together, we can all help Queensland children, families and communities grow well.
If you would like more ideas and information about helping children grow well, try: