03. Theory

This section looks in detail at some of the key theoretical elements informing the Story Links model.

Introduction to Story Links Theory

Pupils’ attachment anxieties and consequent behaviour difficulties may be dramatically reduced if a way can be found to bring the parent into a positive relationship with the child within the educational environment.

The intervention involves partnership with parents, many of whom are likely to have had a poor history of engagement with the school  with much of their previous contact relating to complaints about their child’s behaviour.

Story Links aims to engage these parents in a solution-focused manner and empower them to provide support for their child’s development and learning. The co-creation of stories in the sessions is designed to be engaging and enjoyable for both the parent and child.

Parents are encouraged to respond to their child’s emotional needs using the indirect medium of story metaphor and also to support their child to improve their reading skills.

While drawing on the  psychodynamic concepts such as f attachment, emotional containment, and the creation of a ‘potential space’ (Winnicott, 1999) (where parent and child can meet in a mutually enjoyable activity), the Story Links model also  includes aspects of the humanistic perspective, such as active listening and unconditional positive regard,  and aspects of the cognitive behavioural perspectives, such as negotiating behavioural targets between parent, pupil and classteacher.

Attachment Theory

An introduction to Bowlby’s attachment theory and more recent research on attachment and learning

Emotional Containment

containment-left Bion’s theory that emotional containment is necessary for thinking to take place

Active Listening

listening-rightThe principles for using active listening skills

Parent Partnership

Highlights the impact of parental involvement on pupils’ academic performance

From the Dragon’s Mouth