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    The word schema. comes from the Greek word that means an outline or pattern. This outline or pattern is a way to solve problems or make sense of the world in your brain.

    Schema A mental codification of experience that includes a particular organized way of perceiving cognitively and responding to a complex situation or set of stimuli

    Think About It

    Hold your hands out in front of you with your fingers separated. Now, interlace your fingers so your hands are together. Notice how nicely your hands fit together. This can be compared to your schema. When ideas or thoughts make sense to you or you can make sense of the world around you, you can say, “This fits into my schema.”

    Now, place your hands out in front of you again with your fingers separated. Instead of interlacing your fingers, touch the tips of your fingers (for example: pinky finger on the left hand touching the pinky finger on the right). This can be compared to something not fitting into your schema. When ideas or thoughts do not make sense to you or you cannot make sense of the world around you, you can say, “This does not fit into my schema.”

    If you think of your brain like a large filing cabinet or storage space on your computer, this will seem really easy for you. In your cabinet you have many, many folders. In each folder, you have subfolders. For example, in your file cabinet, you may have a "folder" labeled “rooms in your house." In that folder, you have subfolders titled, "My room," "Kitchen,” and “Bathroom." In each of these folders, there are memories or ideas.