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Life at Two – Introducing Ava and her family

Introducing Ava – her multiple attachments and her family.

Good for looking at

  • Parents
  • Family
  • Multiple attachments
  • Getting dressed
  • Moving and handling
  • Self-esteem

Contents of clip

  • Ava's family and multiple attachments
  • Peter Elfer - getting used to other's responses
  • Relationship with mum
  • Getting dressed and self-esteem

What did you notice?

  • Who is Ava attached to in her family?
  • What can you say about Ava’s relationship with her mum?
  • Why do close attachments help Ava in her dealings with others?
  • What does mum do to encourage Ava to dress herself?
  • Why is it important for Ava to begin to learn to dress herself?
  • In what ways does Ava’s mum help her development?
00:18
You're squashing me!
00:21
Ava is now two.
00:22
From birth she's been brought up by her mum, Molly.
00:26
A secure well attached relationship
00:28
has developed between them because Molly
00:30
has always been responsive
00:32
to Ava's communications and needs.
00:36
In difficult situations, Ava knows
00:38
that Molly is always there to help.
00:40
She's her secure base.
00:50
Molly and Ava live with Molly's mum and brother, Jack.
00:53
Ava's granny and uncle.
00:55
They usually all get together at meal times.
00:58
Ava is gradually getting to understand who she is
01:02
and develop a sense of belonging in this family setting.
01:06
She's attached to all three adults.
01:09
But there's a hierarchy and Molly's at the top.
01:12
If she's available, she'll always be Ava's first choice,
01:16
especially in times of distress.
01:24
But if Molly has to go out,
01:25
Ava still feels secure with her Uncle Jack.
01:29
She's usually happy to be left with him.
01:31
And she's used to the physical games he plays with her.
01:34
She knows that Molly will return.
01:41
Dizzy.
01:45
Do you think that ones a bit small?
01:46
She's particularly attached to Grandma.
01:49
Because Grandma's always responsive to her.
01:52
That's mommy.
01:54
Is it mommy, is it?
01:55
Yeah.
01:55
Shall we show mommy what we've been doing?
01:57
Tell mommy been doing.
02:00
Wow.
02:02
Aren't they fantastic?
02:04
They're brilliant.
02:07
What are they?
02:09
What buns.
02:09
And another one.
02:11
And another, you've done so many.
02:14
We've done lots.
02:15
Can I eat it?
02:17
Close attachments are so important.
02:23
Not just for self image, but for social development
02:25
and emotional development.
02:30
Because they make children feel more secure about themselves
02:31
and they help children to begin
02:35
to understand other peoples feelings.
02:37
Oh, you want it back?
02:39
Not my present?
02:41
Is it not my present?
02:41
No?
02:43
You just gave it to me.
02:45
I want it.
02:47
I want it.
02:47
I want it.
02:49
Oh, it's my present.
02:52
If a child can begin to tune in to one
02:55
or two familiar adults and begin to predict
02:60
and understand their responses, it's the basis for empathy
03:04
and understanding relationships generally.
03:11
So, it's terribly important for social interactions.
03:13
Let's talk.
03:15
Let's talk?
03:16
As Molly's always been responsive
03:20
to Ava's communications and talked with her a lot,
03:23
she now has a rich understanding of spoken language
03:24
and enjoys conversations.
03:24
I'm awake.
03:28
What to do today?
03:29
What shall we do today?
03:32
Yeah!
03:33
This good attachment also means
03:35
that Ava's keen and try and do things
03:37
for herself and please Molly.
03:39
This makes it easier for Molly to teach her
03:41
to do everyday tasks and become more independent.
03:49
Listen, this is the hole.
03:51
That's the hole,
03:52
but you've got to put it up T-shirt,
03:54
your hand up the T-shirt.
03:56
She's specific with praise
03:58
and consistently encourages Ava,
03:60
even though it takes much longer to get ready.
04:04
As Ava's understanding of her own ability grows,
04:07
she's motivated to practice and put her own boots on.
04:10
It makes her feel good about herself.
04:14
You've done really,
04:15
did you do that one by yourself?
04:22
Wow-wee!
04:25
Well done.
04:27
Sorted.
04:30
Clever girl.

Here we meet Ava and her family. She lives with her mum, grandma and uncle. She is closest to her mum and they have a good attachment relationship. She is attached to the other members of the family but mum is her first choice if she is available. Mum is her ‘secure base’ 1. By secure base, we mean that her relationship with mum makes Ava feel safe and confident to leave mum’s side and begin to explore – you can see how out of attachment and dependence comes the beginnings of independence. Now she is two Ava is learning how to do many more things for herself. With help from mum she is often practicing new skills. Mum is patient, giving plenty of time and praise. By encouraging and allowing Ava to learn how to look after herself mum is helping Ava to build her confidence and self-esteem.

1  Bowlby, J. A Secure Base. Clinical Applications of Attachment Theory. Travistock/Routledge. 1993