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October 12 , 2008

Observing Children with Attachment Difficulties in School

A Tool for Identifying and Supporting Emotional and Social Difficulties in Children Aged 5-11


Emotional difficulties in children aged 5-11 can display themselves in a range of different behaviours, and it is important for staff in schools to be able to identify and address these problems, and to provide appropriate help. This easy-to-use tool provides an observation checklist which enables staff to identify behavioural patterns in children with social and emotional difficulties, analyse the emotional difficulties underlying these behaviours and establish what kind of help and support the children need. Behavioural responses are categorised within clearly outlined topics, including behaviour, play and relationship with peers, attachment behaviours, emotional state in the classroom and attitude to attendance. Checklists and diagrams identify different 'styles' of relating (secure, avoidant, ambivalent), to help school staff who work with children and their families to respond appropriately to the individual needs of each child. A range of handouts include activities designed to provide emotional support, to focus and regulate behaviour and enable the child to develop important social and emotional skills. Suitable for use with children aged 5-11, this tool will be an invaluable resource for teachers, teaching assistants, learning support staff, school counsellors and educational psychologists.
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