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Five To Thrive Training & Workshops

Face-to-Face Course Delivered by KCA Five to Thrive:

Attendance of the Five to thrive course will enable you:
  • Understand how parenting contributes to brain development in children and young people
  • Take some time to reflect on the human brain as a social organ.
  • That Brain connections form from being connected with others.
  • Emotional nurture feeds the brain as physical nurture feeds the body

The course explores three key relational processes

  • Mindful awareness: the adult actively holding the child in mind
  • Soothing / co-regulation: the adult acting as the external regulator for the child
  • Stimulation / co-learning: the adult actively prompting brain activity in the child

Once you have attended the training you will understand:

Five key relational activities:  Five to Thrive

Responding and assessing needs
The child produces attachment behaviours and the parent responds

Engaging and matching
The child and the parent become physically attuned through proximity and touch

Self-regulating stress. 
The adult regulates their own internal state, balancing the nervous system

Authentic non-verbal communication
Right-brain activity in the adult is expressed non-verbally through the face and body, and stimulates right-brain activity in the child

Verbal communication
Left-brain activity in the adult stimulates matching activity in the child

Develop skills in promoting confident and reflective parenting

How can you help parents to gain confidence through understanding brain development?

  • Using Five to Thrive as an approach to develop parental confidence.
  • Using the concept in your day to day practise.
  • Developing your work setting to promote optimal brain function for all of your day to day contacts.

How can you encourage parents to become more reflective?
  • Using Five to Thrive as an approach to help parents reflect on interaction with their children
  • Developing your work setting to promote reflective practice at all levels

Nest steps for practice
  • Planning your next steps in working to promote positive parenting
  • Five to Thrive helps you as practitioners to think about parental capacity in new way.
  • Reflection of your interactions with parents and families enabling you to support families to strengthen their parental capacity to meet nurture needs.
  • Enables you as practitioners to notice how your own relationships with parents are providing a model for emotional nurture.
  • Encourages you as practitioners to appreciate that all humans are both vulnerable and resilient, and that the capacity to self-regulate is not static but dynamic, as resilience and vulnerability shift and change.
  • Five to Thrive is not a golden chalice or a magic wand, but it can help you as practitioners to find ways of using every interaction to promote emotional nurture.
  • Finally you will contribute to building resilient people, resilient families, and resilient communities.

For further information regarding dates and venues for training please contact

A child’s brain is amazing!

Research shows that positive relationship between parents and children supports their healthy brain development through all the different stages of their childhood.

Understanding brain development can be difficult. Barnardo’s have therefore teamed up with Kate Cairns Associates (KCA) who are experts in the field.

KCA has taken all of the complex evidence and research about healthy brain development and created a simple and effective approach called Five to Thrive.

We have trained the Hampshire Healthy Family Staff in the Five to Thrive approach and are delighted to share it with you here.

Kate Cairns Associates’ Five to Thrive approach is based on a set of five key activities that are the building blocks of healthy communication and brain development;


Responding and assessing needs


Connecting and engaging


Self-regulating stress


Being playful/ activating the right brain


Creating a narrative / activating the left brain

Are you a registered Early Years Provider or support activities for parents and under-5s in Hampshire?

Join us on a journey to discover more about early brain development and how this influences children’s behaviour and long term health & well-being?

Our free Five to Thrive practical workshop is underpinned by neuroscience and includes:

  • Early attachment
  • Brain development
  • Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) & trauma
  • Parenting styles
  • The problem with punishment & rewards
  • Alternative approaches in practice

Every key person in your setting has the potential to enhance the mental health of the children in their care by recognising the immense power of compassionate, nurturing relationships.

Delivered over 2x2 hour sessions, this workshop aims to provide you with up-to-date approaches to attachment based and trauma informed practice. Please book here or email us at

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