Early years advice and support

Select the boxes below for further information.

The Tiny Happy People website offers tips and advice on understanding children’s emotional development, behaviour and well-being.

The Solihull Approach guide to milestones will help you to understand emotional and development for the first five years.

As toddlers children start to see the world from their own point of view. They’re quickly developing both physically and mentally, but don’t yet have the ability to reason, understand or explain what they’re feeling.

The Health for Under 5s website provides advice for different types of behaviour and you can find ways to deal with child behaviour problems from the NHS. 

Get information and guidance on how to support babies and young children with their mental health.

At the Tiny Happy People website you can choose your child's age group for fun activity ideas. 

Solihull Five to Thrive includes training and support to understand your child and a range of ideas for play.  

Hungry Little Minds has a collection of short videos with fun activities.

The BBC Tiny Happy People website is great for songs and rhymes for babies. You can also find resources to help families of children with special educational needs or disabilities (SEND).    

Speech and Language UK help families to help children facing challenges with talking and understanding words. This includes Through the eyes of a child, a series of videos that can help you communicate and interact with your child.

The NSPCC provide a range of ideas to support communication with your baby and to look-say-sing-play.

You can learn through play at the Words for Life website, with activities for 0 to 6, months and first words, up to 9 to 12 years. They also provide stories in many different languages.

Makaton is a visual way to develop communication skills, which helps stimulate sounds and words. This visual way of communicating supports language development, such as putting words together.

Makaton helps understanding by giving an extra visual cue to communication. You can learn a new word every week and be inspired to get signing.

Solihull Community Speech and Language Therapy service is full of ideas for young children. 

Solihull Health Visitors share that when a child wants to do something but can’t express this in a way that adults can understand, they rely on their behaviour to get their message across. 

You can find help on how to start and support potty training from:

Solihull Children’s Community Therapies provide self-care advice, including:

  • washing
  • bowel and bladder management
  • dressing
  • eating
  • personal hygiene
  • grooming
  • sleep

Cerebra have a video and downloadable advice for strong sleep hygiene.   

Bliss is a website to support parents with premature babies, including weaning and development information.

Contact Family Support Services at Contact for free information, advice and support. Includes website, family workshops, a listening ear service and free help line.

You can find out about child development and physical milestones linked to language and play at the BBC's Tiny Happy People site

Get moving with the NHS 10 Minute Shake Up games linked to Disney characters.    

Regular predictable bedtime routines help babies and young children to settle happily to sleep. The Institute of Health Visiting provide Healthy Sleep Routines.  

If you’re more than 10 weeks pregnant or have a child under 4, you may be entitled to get help to buy healthy food and milk. If you are eligible, you’ll be sent a Healthy Start card with money on it that you can use in some UK shops. Frequently Asked Questions are available if you need more information. 

Further support for specific needs

What is my child entitled to?

You can apply for DLA at GOV.UK.   

If you need:

  • help with filling in the form, Citizens Advice provide guidance or can help fill it in for you
  • help with what information you need to include, Contact explains the most difficult parts of the form alongside top tips of what needs to be included

You can also visit our Community Advice Hubs in Chelmsley Wood Library and Solihull Connect at The Core in Solihull town centre .

The Disability Access Fund (DAF) is additional funding for early years providers to aid access to free childcare places for disabled children.

Early Education Funding for children aged 2 years old, 3 and 4 years old. 

The scheme provides up to 15 or 30 hours per week of free childcare for children aged 3 or 4 years old and some 2-year-olds.

You can find help with paying for childcare at Childcare Choices.

If you're a parent of a child under 12, and your parent (i.e. the child's grandparent) provides childcare so you can work, they can apply for Specified Adult Childcare credits.

A mark of achievement means that the setting has invested in additional training for a childminder or nursery team to support inclusive practice.

If you are a Solihull provider you can apply for the Dingley’s Promise Inclusion Friendly Setting Mark of Achievement.

Early Years providers and schools can apply for additional funding for children aged 2, 3 and 4 years who have additional needs and/or disabilities through the Solihull Inclusion Fund.

Who else may be able to help?

Solihull Community Therapies are for children and young people who may be experiencing difficulties with communication, physical movement or general everyday activities, or difficulties that may indicate an Autism Spectrum Disorder.

The Solihull Complex Needs Team work with children aged 0 to 5 years with complex difficulties or significant delay across multiple areas of their development, requiring intervention from multiple services.

In Solihull we offer families information and guidance through help and support in the Family Hubs and on the Start for Life website. 

Support to help my child learn and develop through the early years

The Department for Education (DfE) has published a guide for parents, ‘What to expect in the Early Years Foundation Stage’ which guides parents through what to expect in their child’s development.

With Five to thrive, you can have fun and build your child’s brain.

Solihull’s Parenting Team have been creating a range of free resources to help support parents across the borough

Would you like to know what's happening in Solihull and its neighbouring areas, for children and families? Then join our Parents' Network for the latest information.

You can search a directory of local support at the Health for Under 5’s website.

ASQ is the Ages and Stages Questionnaire form completed with Health Visitors.

You can find contact details for Solihull school nurses at South Warwickshire University NHS Foundation Trust.

The Here2Help hub is set up to assist households and families in Solihull with cost-of-living advice.  

'Preparing for School' presentation

The Solihull 0-19 services, Health Visiting and School Nursing teams have created a comprehensive ‘Preparing for School’ presentation covering topics such as dressing and undressing, eating and drinking, toileting, and development milestones.

Please see our 'Preparing for School presentation.

Are there organisations who might be able to help with more specific needs?

Solihull SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disability) information, advice and support service at Family Action   

ICON  - Infant crying is normal. Babies cry, you can cope. Find advice and support. 

Parenting support in Solihull - a range of supportive groups and workshops for parents and carers in Solihull, taking place both face-to-face and virtually, and all free of charge.

Parent Carer Voice in Solihull  - The forum is open to all families living in Solihull or those living outside accessing schools and services within health, education and social care that are provided within Solihull.