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Life at two – A feeling of belonging at nursery

30 months – Becoming part of the group.

Contents of section

  • Arrival - confident being left
  • Curious about environment
  • Consolidated relationship with key person
  • Elfer - importance of physical contact
  • Intimacy - expressing thoughts and feelings
  • Meal times - socialising


  • How does Claire encourage Ava’s signs of interest in the catkins?
  • What does Claire do when Ava grabs her legs during the walk?
  • How does Claire do while she’s changing Ava’s nappy?
  • What does Ava tell Claire when she is on the toilet?
  • How can you tell that Ava’s made a good attachment relationship with Claire?
  • Why is physical contact important and how should it be dealt with?
  • What does Claire tell mum about the trip out?
  • What can you say about the relationship between Ava, Claire and mum?

This section shows how at ease Ava now seems in the nursery. She is confident to explore the environment and is really having fun. She feels secure with Claire, her key person, and can talk about her feelings; the key relationship is blooming. Claire knows what Ava likes and dislikes and is respectful towards her. Ava knows its okay to show affection towards Claire even when mum is there. The relationship between all three is open and communicative. If the parent is neglected this could cause problems with the key person approach leading perhaps to anxieties and jealousies between the parent and key person. The importance of this triangular relationship was first emphasised by Elinor Goldshmied 3.

fig. 1

The ‘mother’, baby and key person create and maintain a triangle of trust and communication between each other.

3 Goldschmied E. and Selleck D. 1996. Communication between babies in their first year. National Children’s Bureau. (A training booklet and video)

fig. 1, Idem