Development of Attachment Among Children from One to Four Years Old



The article presents the review of research on the development of attachment among young and preschool children with the correlation between the quality of child’s attachment and mother’s sensitivity. Theoretical approaches to assessing attachment behaviour in children were also considered. These approaches have a different conceptualisation of the development of attachment strategies in children exposed to abuse and neglect in their families. There is no research data of stability and change of the attachment patterns in Russian preschoolers studied by Strange Situation Procedure. The aims of the study were to examine longitudinally the stability and change of attachment patterns in infancy and preschool age as well as to describe factors which relate to the change of the attachment patterns. 27 “mother-child” dyads took part in the study. All the children were developing normally. The Strange Situation Procedure was used to assess attachment patterns in children aged 13,3±1,6 and 32,1±9,6 months old. M.Ainsworth’s and P.Crittenden’s classification criteria were used for the evaluating of attachment patterns. Attachment classification showed instability between infancy and preschool years in 22,2% of children. The change of attachment patterns of children was related to markers of the depression in infancy as well as with daycare visits. Findings are discussed in terms of different positions in attachment theory.

General Information

Keywords: attachment, early childhood, preschoolers, assessment of attachment

Journal rubric: Applied Research and Practice

Article type: scientific article

For citation: Pleshkova N.L. Development of Attachment Among Children from One to Four Years Old. Vestnik of Saint Petersburg University. Psychology, 2018. Vol. 8, no. 4, pp. 396–408. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


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Information About the Authors

Natalia L. Pleshkova, PhD in Psychology, St. Petersburg State University, St.Petersburg, Russia, e-mail:



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