1st Edition

Developing Secure Attachment Through Play Helping Vulnerable Children Build their Social and Emotional Wellbeing

By Joan Moore Copyright 2022
    206 Pages 87 B/W Illustrations
    by Speechmark

    206 Pages 87 B/W Illustrations
    by Speechmark

    Developing Secure Attachment Through Play offers a range of imaginative and engaging play-based activities, designed to help vulnerable young children forge safe attachments with their caregivers.

    The book focuses on key developmental stages that may have been missed due to challenging life circumstances, such as social-emotional development, object permanence and physical and sensory development. It also considers pertinent issues including trauma, separation, loss and transition. Chapters explore each topic from a theoretical perspective, before offering case studies that illustrate the theory in practice, and a range of activities to demonstrate the effectiveness of play in developing healthy attachments.

    Key features of this book include:

    • 80 activities that can be carried out at home or in educational settings, designed to facilitate attachment and enhance social-emotional development;

    • case vignettes exploring creative activities such as mirroring, construction play, physical play, baby doll play and messy play;

    • scripts and strategies to create a safe and respectful environment for vulnerable children;

    • photocopiable and downloadable resources, including early learning goals, a collection of therapeutic stories and a transition calendar

    By engaging children in these activities, parents, caregivers and practitioners can help the children in their care gain a sense of belonging and develop their self-esteem. This will be a valuable resource for early years practitioners, adoptive, foster and kinship parents, and therapists and social workers supporting young children.

    Introduction  Chapter 1: Social and Emotional Development  Chapter 2: Trauma  Chapter 3: Mirroring  Chapter 4: Object Permanence  Chapter 5: Cause and Effect  Chapter 6: Physical Development and Sensory Integration  Chapter 7: Language and Speech Development  Chapter 8: Loss and Separation  Chapter 9: Transition  Chapter 10: Identity  Glossary of Terms  Bibliography  Appendices


    Joan Moore is an author, dramatherapist, play therapist and adoption support provider with foster, adoptive and kinship families. She works mainly with families in their home, applying her "Theatre of Attachment" model of life history therapy. Joan has written several books and peer-reviewed articles. Her doctoral study at Leeds Beckett University on using story and drama to support these placements is described in "Narrative and Dramatic Approaches to Children’s Life Story with Foster, Adoptive and Kinship Families", published by Routledge. She supervises creative arts therapists and delivers training. Having a background in social work with children and families and Youth Justice, Joan has undertaken Expert Witness Assessments of siblings, children’s care needs, parents, and assessments of prospective adoptive parents, foster carers and kinship carers.

    This is a definite ‘must read’ book, the latest from highly experienced therapist, Dr Joan Moore. It provides a wealth of practical ideas with underlying theory, and within the framework of Early Learning Goals. It will be an essential resource for parents and caregivers, especially for foster and adoptive parents, also for social workers, practitioners in care and education and all therapists addressing the developmental needs of children with attachment issues.

    Dr Sue Jennings, Play and Dramatherapist, Neuro-Dramatic-Play LTD