how my schema helps me

back to itsy bitsies and friends, i notice that when Jessica, Angela and Bella discuss the “gossip” about all the adopted Cullen teenage siblings living together and “dating” at the same time, using my schema (background knowledge) helps me infer to understand more fully why this causes gossip in Forks.  Bella says, on p21, “Her voice held all the shock and condemnation of the small town, I thought critically.  But, if I was being honest, I had to admit that even in Phoenix, it would cause gossip.” So, all my schema for small towns, “rules”, religious upbringing/morals, gossip and family structures helps me to understand that Forks is a small town with probably few scandalous events, so this would cause big talk for the town.  When Bella mentions Phoenix, my schema helps me see beyond Forks and how this might be a big deal in the larger “world”.  I can also make a personal connection that helps me clarify the emotions of the gossipers and the gossipees – a controversial union in the family.  In my experience, people are either on one side of the great divide on the issue or the other, I have not experience a lot of fence-sitting in this type of situation.  Applying my experience to the fictional one, I do understand better how wicked and fierce the gossip could have been, and how the condemnation was probably thick in the air and further ostricized the newcomers from the locals (since we are told humans instinctively would give them a wide berth without realizing why!).

I am making inferences here, and while I can read the words and “get” it in passing, making the connections and inferences help to extend my understanding.  It is a little cumbersome to explain, which has some implications for instruction and assessment in the classroom, which we see regularly.  It’s messy stuff.  I see how making the metacognition a more explicit part of the thinking makes the strategy more tangible — we can talk more about results and yield.  Maybe?  What can we A.P.E and what can we not A.P.E??

more about metacognition


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