Who We Are

Emily has been surrounded by military life since she was born with her father being a Vietnam Veteran and many family members serving throughout the Army, Navy and Airforce. Emily’s brother is also an East Timor, Iraq and Afghanistan veteran.

Emily is passionate about encouraging all services to respectfully acknowledge and develop an understanding of the challenges military families and children face with a focus on embedding age appropriate sustainable programs.

Emily also has a passion for and experience in developing low sensory environments throughout services to encourage active learning in a calm and inviting space.

Emily Small

Company Director / Consultant / Early Childhood Teacher

Emily is an Early Childhood Teacher with experience working in the early childhood field for over 15 years. Emily has worked from a trainee through to the director, international consultant and most recently as an Inclusion Professional for the NSW/ACT Inclusion Agency. Emily has founded various projects both within Australia and internationally supporting educators to develop their skills, knowledge and confidence in a range of early childhood approaches.

Emily founded Small Hands Early Learning following a ten-year passion implementing various experiences around Anzac Day and other important military events for children throughout several Early Childhood services. Emily provided an opportunity where children could explore Anzac Day/ Remembrance Day in an age appropriate way and focused on discussing the ‘Hows’ and ‘Whys’ with educators to build their knowledge and confidence to embed inclusive practices in regards to military children and families.

Emily promotes the use of ‘Risky Play’ ideas to challenge children to be active learners within their own environment and encourage self-regulation, self-awareness and co-operation skills.

By providing an inclusive environment for all children which is low sensory and promotes Risky Play ideas children are actively engaged in programs which can assist in limiting challenging behaviours, outbursts and encourages positive social interaction peer to peer. 

Our Consultants

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Our consultants are highly trained and experienced Early Childhood Teachers who have a passion for developing the skills, knowledge and confidence of educators to embed inclusive practices and approaches.


Our consultants have a military background and an in-depth understanding of military ways of life which they are passionate about sharing.

All consultants have a current Working With Children’s Check, Police Check and current Senior First Aid.


By taking a collaborative approach to developing skills, knowledge and confidence, educators will feel empowered to embed inclusive practices for all children and families.

Specialised consultants available through

Small Hands Early Learning: 


Are you looking for an Occupational Therapist to assist in supporting the inclusion of all children within your service? Contact Small Hands Early Learning today to speak with one of our qualified Occupational therapists who specialise in working within Early Childhood and OSHC services. 


  • Mentoring and facilitating educator knowledge around working with children exhibiting challenging behaviours

  • Anzac Day Program

  • Mentoring and facilitating educator knowledge around Play Based Approaches

  • Mentoring programs to develop educator skills, knowledge and confidence in Early Childhood

Elizabeth has over 40 years’ experience in Primary and Early Childhood Education including classroom teaching, administration, director, international consultancy and staff training. Elizabeth holds a Bachelor or Teaching (Primary) and a Grad Dip in Early Childhood Education.

Elizabeth’s has had extensive experience in managing a variety of children’s behaviours in the areas of Global delay, language delay, ADHD, ADD, ODD and Autism. Elizabeth believes all children should have the opportunity to learn and thrive in an inclusive and caring environment that is as home like as possible.


Elizabeth focuses on using a collaborative approach involving educators, parents, families and medical professionals to achieve the best outcome possible for all children.