Saturday, 4 June 2011

Piloting Schemas in the Nurseries

In order to assess any potential problems with adopting a schema approach and before I launched it across TEYP in September; I decided to run a pilot study in two of our baby rooms. These were at Hand in Hand and Growing Together.

Both rooms were given some short training and I discussed my plans with the staff. The staff working in the rooms (four staff) were happy to take part (although a bit apprehensive). However, they carried out a magnificent job.

All the children attending the rooms had schemas or interests quickly identified and before long, designated wall space contained lots of PLODS. The staff planned and assessed the children compentently. They  filmed children and learned to create movies; to be honest it was actually good fun! If staff needed help or support they confidently asked for it. I believe their growing confidence, their own knowledge base and a belief in what they were doing and seeing enabled them to run the pilot study successfully and they certainly got the most out of it.

A child exploring rotation in during play with cornflour

One nursery commented:

We began schema planning on the 26 April, we had a basic knowledge on schemas and were interested to learn more. Kim had recognised a baby in our unit who had a rotational and on top schema and when she played the video back this was clear to see. She then went on to show us an example of schema planning which to begin with looked like lots of paper work, but in actual fact it was less and so simple.

Both us staff members have taken to the new planning really well. It's easy and enjoyable. We feel you get a lot more from the children this way because its their interest and something they (children) want to do.

Both nurseries approached the task and tested and piloted the observation, assessment and planning in a positive way. They were open minded about what they did and when they came across any concerns or problems these were either sorted immediately by themselves or they asked for help.

I believe time will be an issue for many rooms: time to write learning stories and time to create and burn movies onto disc.

Time is something that I am now thinking about and mulling over. I want to get this right before September.

Any suggestions?  It would be great to hear from you all :0)

  • TTO staff have time out leading up to the writing of stories and holiday staff get time out during the holiday periods as this is a quieter time.
  • Learning stories can be done in the room with the children, anotating, cutting and sticking alongside the key person.
  • The deadline for the learning story each term is the first day back after the holiday. That way children's stories can be written in the holiday.
  • BEING GIVEN A DEADLINE will help staff keep focused and on track - like it did during the pilot learning stories - everyone kept to the deadline and it was a big success :0)

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