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"As I walked down the stairs to the yard today, I was delighted to see an amazing creation in progress. At first glance it looked like a big mess and not too long ago I would have asked the children to stop and clean up. I might have previously thought that the children were not being respectful of the materials. In fact, what was happening was quite the opposite." So writes Deb Curtis in Really Seeing Children.
Curtis goes on to describe the value she observed in what turned out to be the children's on-going "junkyard" project. "Since studying schema theory, I now understand that learning is happening when children create 'junkyards' and using all the materials in the yard is a necessity. A schema is a thread of thought that is demonstrated by repeated actions and patterns in children’s play. When children are exploring schema they are building understanding of ideas, patterns and concepts."
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