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ERIC Number: ED438903
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999-Nov-18
Pages: 10
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Schema Learning, and Its Possible Links to Brain Development.
Meade, Anne
Using similar research in Britain as a basis, a study in New Zealand explored schema learning in young children. The primary purpose of the study was to determine the effects of a curriculum intervention designed to increase the richness and amount of stimulation teachers and parents give 4-year-olds in response to observations of children's fascination with particular schemas. One of the key findings of the British study was that there are patterns of repeated actions in the play of children this age as they explore a particular notion, such as parallel lines. In both the British and New Zealand research, children whose teachers and parents reinforced their schema-related activities scored higher than their peers in various areas of competency. Implications for early childhood practitioners and neuroscientists include the following: (1) patterns in children's actions and behavior may indicate there is programmed development of neural pathways during certain periods in young children's growth; (2) when relevant enriching experiences are available, they facilitate increased repetition of behavior that seems to be associated with the strengthening of synapses for spatial-visual and other aspects of development; (3) representation of "thoughts of forms," such as grids, is a schema-related activity involving several senses, and therefore different parts of the brain; and (4) the strengthening of neural pathways is afforded by eclectic, playful experiences that have a focus to them, a self-organized focus on the schemas, although adults may not see such play as purposeful. (Contains 20 references.) (EV)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New Zealand