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The Importance of Pre-School Science – Part 2


There are a variety of reasons; but one of the most important is that science provides a context for learning about our world.

 Other reasons why early exposure to science is useful:  

  • It helps children develop valuable literacy skills – in addition to developing scientific, environmental and math-related literacy, science may prompt children who don’t enjoy reading fiction to read non-fiction, linking the scientific process of exploring and discovery with reading.
  • Scientific inquiry and problem solving builds confidence. Learning to ask questions and solve problems is an essential life skill and vital for school learning.

Early exposure to the many facets of science may help cement future interest.  “Many young people turn away from the world of science because they think it’s isolating and that science works by itself,” says Schmidt.  “If you can help children understand that science is actually about teamwork, about exploring their world and about communicating that information to other people, the essence of science will be better understood [and more children may stick with it.”

 So, don’t fear exploring the world of science with the preschooler. Together you can enjoy discovering answers to life’s puzzles – both big and small.

Five Ways to Teach Children Science

You don’t need to be a scientist, or have lots of facts in your head.  All you need is a love of discovery.  You show children that it’s good to be curious and to ask questions.  This will give them confidence in their ability to explore.  Here are some ways to get involved:

1.     Be the Example

Show them how curious you are. Let your own sense of discovery guide your exploration. Exhibit an attitude of openness to learning. If you can access your own imagination and curiosity you’ll become a co-discoverer with children. Demonstrate the fun of exploration and the joy of learning new things.

2.    Point it Out

Science is all around you. Find fun ways of showing children the science of their every day life. It’s in cooking, cleaning, collecting stones, seeing the age lines in a tree, or maybe mom is expecting a new baby.  Maybe you can explore the outside or watch a rainbow after a shower.  It’s all science.

3.    Teach Observation

Children are surrounded with new information. It can be a lot to take in. But they’re always looking, always listening. Teach children to pay closer attention to details. When they see something new, ask them to notice the size and shape, the color, the smell, the sound. Teach them to take a moment to notice things. You can even encourage him to take notes of the things they see each day. A teacher’s journal would be used to list simple experiences, which will strengthen their abilities and awareness of their surroundings including your abilities, too.

4.    Encourage Questions

Kids are full of questions. Life is too full of new information for them to go through a day without wondering about something. You should not only be receptive to their questions at all times, but you go as far as to encourage them to ask. Use that notebook again. Suggest writing down questions that occur to them during the day, so they can remember them later and go looking for the answer. Exercises in inquiry will serve your child in every class and every professional field later in life.

5.    Take Them Seriously

Listen to their observations and to their explanations of things. It will give them confidence in their own abilities to discover and it will teach them to trust their instincts. If their off target, use it as an opportunity to help them reach the right conclusion on their own by asking them questions or pointing out things they should reconsider. Taking a child seriously and listening with respect is crucial to learning.

Next – Part 3- Looking at PRE-SCIENCE ACTIVITIES


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