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Describes the four keys types of relationship style that children can have. 


The theory allows us to identify how children relate to others, and how we as educators should respond to them. 


The theory, first devised by John Bowlby, claims that our relationship style (or attachment style) is shaped by our experiences when we are children.


If we have attachments that are characterised by insecurity and anxiety when we are younger, then we are likely to mirror such relationships in our adult life. 


A child's relationship with their primary caregiver is of particular importance. 

4 Types of Attachments


  1. Secure: these children will feel reassured and will approach the world with confidence

  2. Anxious: insecure in relationships, can act out to gain the attention of others

  3. Avoidant: will avoid discussing their feelings and may appear to be very independent/self-reliant

  4. Fearful-avoidant: fear of rejection and previous experience of relationships has left them with low self-esteem 


Identifying a child's attachment style can inform how we should approach our relationship with them. For example, if a child is anxious in their relations with others, we can take greater care to reassure their anxieties. 

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