The Challenges Of Active Learning In Early Years

1130 Words 5 Pages
Practitioners in the Early Years setting must support children as active learners in order for them to develop to their fullest potential. Active learning covers a wide range of aspects, however, it is not possible to cover them all as the subject is very extensive. Nevertheless, the following aspects of active learning will be covered: neuroscience, metacognition, schema development, social cognition, the influences of adult intervention and how children learn through play. As well as exploring the aspects of active learning, this essay will consider the challenges practitioners face when working with children under three years old.

Active learning involves basing all learning around the child in real life or imaginary situations. Children
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Through a range of activities such as: checking current knowledge, self-testing, asking questions, revising and reflecting children will be able to boost their metacognitive skills and strategies in order to assist them to reach their highest level of learning. Children can then use their knowledge and problem-solving abilities in everyday life, for example making rules for a game. From practice this was observed when ____________ (Appendix 2). Fisher, (1995) states that there are specific practices which will assist in the development of metacognitive skills and strategies - planning, monitoring, and assessing. He believed that the planning stage was vital and should involve and include children. Through the child’s involvement, they will be able to solve problems and learn on their own, showing independence. This then links in with the guidelines for education in Scottish schools, which is called a Curriculum for Excellence (Scottish Executive, 2004). The curriculum has four capacities - successful learner, confident individual, responsible citizen and effective contributor, which are there to make sure and young people can develop the relevant skills, qualities, and knowledge needed to excel in life. One of the four capacities that relate well to metacognition is successful learners. This links as the …show more content…
Schemas are repetitive and children learn more when they are actively involved in play experiences, with a more hands on approach to learning. Jean Piaget (1896-1980) was one of the first cognitive psychologists who was interested in how cognitive structures are created and how they are linked to observed behaviors. More recently theorists Worthington and Carruthers (2003) have carried out work relating to schemas. They observed children aged four to six within a class setting and schemas were commonly detected, including enveloping, enclosing, transporting, connecting, rotating, connecting, spirals, trajectories and transformation. They found that there were patterns in the child’s schemas, with the youngest of children’s schemas bases upon their knowledge and ideas. The children were able to show they could put numbers to objects, however, this may not have been in the typical way expected. Children made symbols in a number of ways, with mark-makings showing repetitive patterns – lines, circles, triangles, arrows and crosses – which are seen in their everyday life’s. These basic marks will, therefore, become the foundation for more intricate representations as they develop. Worthington and Carruthers (2003) stated that Schematic patterns will not always develop naturally, and practitioners in

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