Emerging Minds
1hr 30mins

Child aware practice

About the course

Child aware practice covers a range of activities designed to ensure that children of adults with multiple and complex needs receive appropriate support from the services that are working with their parents and carers. It ensures that families are supported to make, and sustain, changes so that they can better meet the needs of the children.

This course focuses on child aware practice as a means to introduce or reinforce child and family-sensitive practice.

It is estimated that the course, along with the rich video content, will take you between 90 - 120 minutes to view and complete assessment. You can complete the course at your own pace, and in several sessions. The last page you visit will be bookmarked so that you can jump straight back to where you left off.

Who is this course for?

This course is for professionals, practitioners, team leaders and managers, or those who want to explore ways to implement child aware practice in their organisation or services.

Professionals in:

  • adult mental health settings
  • primary health care
  • non-government organisations
  • child mental health
  • child and youth services.

Learning aims

As you progress through this course, you will be working towards:

  • raising your awareness about how adult issues can potentially impact on children
  • reflecting on, and working towards, ways of talking with adults about these potential impacts
  • extending your thinking as a practitioner so that both children’s needs and parenting needs are considered as part of an intervention with adult clients who are parents.

Learning outcomes

Following completion of this course you should be able to:

  • describe the impact of adult issues on children’s wellbeing and development
  • understand how child aware practice can influence child outcomes
  • develop effective skills for exploring parenting issues, and the needs of children, with parents who are clients.


This course features videos of fictional parents and family scenarios. 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.

A reflective tool for practitioners, teams, managers and organisations

The child aware practice workbook has been designed to enhance your learning as you engage with this course. It will also serve as an ongoing tool for you to use either individually or in teams as you continue to adopt child aware practice.

It contains a series of discussion starters, reflection prompts and activities about the many components of the course. These can be used either individually, in teams, in small workgroups, or across your organisation or service.


The assessment task for this course requires you to choose a specific assessment activity from the workbook, then complete an assessment questionnaire about the outcomes of this activity. You can access the assessment questionnaire at the end of this course.

Download the child aware practice workbook so you can engage with the content and consider which assessment activity you will complete. Use the link above. You may wish to print it out before commencement of the course.


  1. Protecting Children is Everyone’s Business: National Framework for Protecting Australia’s Children 2009-2020.
  2. Holzer, P.J. (2007). Defining the public health model for the child welfare services context. Resource sheet no 11.
  3. O'Donnell, M., Scott, D.,and Stanley, F., (2008). Child abuse and neglect- is it time for a public health approach? Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 32 (4), 325-330
  4. Scott, D. (2006). Toward a public health model of child protection in Australia. Communities, Children and Families Australia , 1 (1), 9-16

Ready to start learning?

Register today to access.