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Mum

Hello, my daughter keeps lining up her toys before playing with them. Does anyone have any clue why this is?

How old is your little one? Sounds like your little one is displaying the positioning schema.

Play schemas are stages of play that children go through. They do this as a necessary step to understanding their world around them. They're when children repeat patterns of behaviour in order to explore and construct meaning to their play. There are so many different schemas.

Both my boys used to line up all their cars. They also used to love sorting into colours. Children also go through a sensitive period for order, which I think starts to develop from about 18 months until about five years.

You could start using positional language for her to listen to, e.g. 'in front of', 'next to', 'behind'. You could say, 'ah, I see you have put the red car next to the orange one' for example. You could give her some everyday objects to order and sort.

Depending on what other interests she has, give her some opportunities to position in size and order. You role model and then she can have a go, if she wants to or just sit back and observe and see what she does. You can get really big threading beads, you could do some threading with her or she can sort the big beads or sort with building blocks.

Pregnant mum of 3