December 01, 2014 at 12:59 PM
Preschoolers are naturally curious about the world around them and at Preschool we make sure the children have plenty of opportunity to explore, discover and draw conclusions about how things work. Our Centre of Interest on ‘Exploring Science’ was a great few weeks of exploration, experiments and new experiences for the children.
Young children, just like scientists, need to practise the process skills of predicting, observing, classifying, hypothesizing, experimenting, and communicating. They need opportunities to reflect on their findings, how they reached them, and how the findings compare to their previous ideas and the ideas of others. In this way, children are encouraged to develop the attitude of a scientist—that is, curiosity and the desire to challenge theories and share new ideas.
The children researched on the internet for new science experiments and even brought new ideas in from home for us to try at Preschool. Soon we were busy with colour mixing, dancing milk, volcanic explosions, crystal growing, invisible ink, disappearing eggs, floating and sinking and a visit to the Girls’ School Science lab to see how ’real’ science experiments happen at the ‘big school.
An important part of the children’s exploration is telling others what they see, what they think, and what it makes them wonder about. The preschoolers were given lots of opportunities to talk about what they observed and to compare their observations with others. It’s activities such as these that also help increase their descriptive vocabulary. Words such as sink, float, crunchy, soft, wet, dry, fast, slow, heavy, light, rough, smooth, hot, and cold are the sort of words the children begin with and build on as they gain a better understanding of their world.
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