Schema and Fairies - Kathy Brodie Early Years Training
Schemas are one of those things that divide practitioners, like fairies at the bottom of the garden. You either believe in them and are in absolute awe at how amazing they are, or you just don’t believe they exist. It’s really interesting when you discuss this with people and it’s extra exciting when a ‘non-believer’ suddenly says “That describes my key child exactly!!” But first of all, let’s explore what a schema is. Athey (2007) defines schema as ‘patterns of behaviour and thinking in children that exist underneath the surface feature of various contents, contexts and specific experience’ (page 5). Nutbrown (2011) extends this to patterns of ‘action and behaviour’ (page 10). For example, for a child with a transporting schema, carrying (transporting) objects is the most important or engaging part of their play. Typically, a ‘transporter’ will pack everything into bags, prams or buckets and carry them around the setting. There are many different identified schema. So far, so good.
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