Emerging Minds

Building blocks for children’s social and emotional wellbeing

About the course

In this course you will look at important concepts and ideas related to children’s mental health and development, and investigate the child’s social and emotional wellbeing within the context of their family, community, and networks.

You will explore the importance of providing guidance and support to parent-clients about their children’s social and emotional wellbeing.

You will also be introduced to principles for providing quality information and resources to parents, as well as the practical issues around working in partnership with parents to identify the most relevant and appropriate information for their situation and their context.

Who is this course for?

This course is for practitioners working with parent-clients where issues or concerns about the client’s children are raised (either by the parent or the practitioner); and where the appropriate response is to offer support, reassurance, guidance, information or resources to assist the parent to promote positive social and emotional wellbeing in their child.

Learning aims

As you progress through this course, you will work towards:

  • understanding the building blocks of social and emotional wellbeing for different ages and stages in a child’s life
  • connecting this information to common parental concerns, or children’s presenting issues
  • understanding the importance of early guidance for parents where there is a concern or issue around their child’s social and emotional wellbeing
  • ensuring that information and resources provided to parents are relevant, of a high quality, and appropriate to the parents’ situation and concerns.

This foundation course provides you with important understandings around children’s mental health; the building blocks for children’s social and emotional wellbeing; factors that can influence a child’s social and emotional wellbeing; and the importance of recognising opportunities to provide guidance and quality information and resources to parents to support their children’s mental health.


As you work through the course, it is important to be aware of your own emotional responses. 

Please follow the self-care tips below and seek help if needed:

  • We do not recommend undertaking the entire course in one sitting. Give yourself some breaks. Even if you don’t feel that you need a break, it’s a good idea to take one anyway and come back later.
  • Be aware of your emotions as you progress through the course, and take action if you are starting to feel stressed or upset. For example, consider taking a break and doing something for yourself that you enjoy.
  • Be aware of your emotional responses after you complete the course.

If at any point you find you are struggling, please talk with your supervisor, seek help, or call Lifeline on 13 11 14, Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636, or SANE Australia on 1800 18 7263.


For the purpose of this course, the term ‘parent’ encompasses the biological and adoptive parents of a child, as well as individuals who have chosen to take up a primary or shared responsibility in raising that child. ‘Social and emotional wellbeing’ refers to the way a person thinks and feels about themselves and others. It incorporates behavioural and emotional strengths and is a facet of child development.1

Social and emotional development’ involves the development of skills required to:

  • identify and understand one’s feelings 
  • read and understand the emotional states of other people 
  • manage strong emotions and how they are expressed 
  • regulate behaviour 
  • develop empathy
  • establish and maintain relationships.2



  1. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. (2012). Social and emotional wellbeing: development of a Children’s Headline Indicator. Cat. no. PHE 158. Canberra: AIHW.
  2. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2009. A picture of Australia’s children 2009. Cat. no. PHE 112. Canberra: AIHW.

Ready to start learning?

Register today to access.