Required Reading5: Science for Infants and Toddlers (Backshall, 2000)

This reading was interesting and it had many useful ideas for encouraging scientific learning in an early childhood centre. The first point that I got from the reading was “Seeing an early childhood environment through science eyes” (Backshall, 2000, p. 12) It means providing an environment with many opportunities for children to stimulate their physical worlds is important. This creates appreciation of science that can lead to the development of curiosity and ideas and children would gain scientific knowledge through the process of inquiry and experimentation.

The second point was “foster curiosity and develop language and conceptual ideas” (Backshall, 2000, p.3). This may mean that providing children with scientific language related to the experiences they are involved in is important. Infants and toddlers are natural scientist so they are capable of manipulating objects around them. However, some of children’s language skills were not developed so they need someone to guide and explain. Through explaining or talking with children, I am able to find out how much the child already know and what concept does the child interest in. As a teacher, I should foster children’s curiosity and develop language and conceptual ideas for children to gain scientific knowledge.

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Floating and Sinking

want to watch video?! —> http://youtu.be/q9O5OrnoDps

This week, we had activities about ‘floating and sinking’. Jasmine and I had a discussion about ‘would a candle float or not’. Jasmine said it would not float as it was heavy, but I said it would float because it is made of oil and oil floats in the water. After discussion, we put the candle in the water and what happen??? It floated! Also our group tried to guess whether float or sink other objects such as play dough, rock, balloon, crayon, etc. We had great time during the discussion of whether the objects float or sink and the some of objects’ result was impressive.

want to watch video?! —> http://youtu.be/XTdkfMnAX64

The second activity was also fun! We floated the little plastic basket on the water and put marbles in one at a time and see how many marbles it would take to sink the basket. Our basket sank at 32th of marbles and when we put the 32th marble, it sank very fast. Additionally, our group was the second group of containing many marbles. Yay!

Reflection for Floating and Sinking

Through the topic of floating and sinking, I had a lot of discussion with our group and we continue to float our curiosity. I happy to learnt many exciting new activities, which would help children to explore idea of mass, density and weight. Also I learnt the difference between density in objects and surface water. I did not know that if the density in objects less then one, it should float and if the density in objects more then one, it should sink. However, for human, we increase our density by putting on a life jacket and we are able to float more easily. To stimulate children’s interest, I could do the boat density by putting more marbles so children can learn why the boat floats and why the boat sinks when it is with more marbles. This topic brought lots of knowledge that I can learn and I am happy to use this knowledge for children in an Early Childhood Centre. I am excited to have the activities with children and they would like these activities to learn the topic.

Original resource for Floating and Sinking

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I chose the book ‘Who sank the boat’ by Pamela Allen because it is a short, repetitive, and slightly rhyming story that would help children to learn about sinking and floating. ‘Who Sank the Boat?’ begins with several barnyard animals who decide that they would like to go for a short row in a boat, and follows them as they try to fit all the animals in the boat without it tipping over. This book would be able to teach that something’s ability to float or sink can depend on the removal or addition of even a very small item, such as a mouse, as well as where items are placed inside a boat to keep the weight evenly distributed to help balance the boat.

Required reading 4: Cahil, A & Fleer, M (2001) I want to know: Learning about Science

I have two key points from this reading. The first idea was that “children will focus on the everyday in ways that adults are not likely to consider”. This is because “what is significant to children may well be quite different” and children’s questions are usually based on the limited knowledge so children’s questions are usually complex and cannot easy to be answered. Therefore teachers need to be prepared for these questions and we have to have the knowledge to guide children in the right way.

Another idea was that the teachers must be flexible in our planning to control the children’s interests. This is because children think different way with adults so if the teacher plan based on children’s interest, they would explore their ideas, learn more and the teachers, we can expand children’s ideas using their questions.

Living world – animal

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For this topic, I collected snails from my gardens to bring and observe in the classroom. During the lecture, I looked the snail through the magnifying glass and I found the snail has patterns on its skin. Also I could see its foot rippled as it slithered forward. All those learning from the activity with the snail was fun!

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The second artifact was about the reproductive cycle of a human body. We firstly talked about the human body, we drew an outline of inside of body that we knew and we found what functions does our body have through the model. I thought that children would boost their curiosity when they have this model. I was very interesting to find out where all our bits are and what they are good for.

 

Reflection for living world – animal

I found the topic of living world (animal) is fascinating! Through this topic, I learnt all about the animal kingdom and the different class of the animal such as fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, mammals and us! To classify animals into these groups, we have to ask ourselves. Does it have backbone? Leg? Hot blood? Cold blood? Does it live in the sea? Land? Etc. I am sure that children would be good at answer these questions and it would be fun to classify the animal with young children. Also we learnt about the human body, how all our organs work and the fact that while we are living our daily life, there are so many process and systems going on our bodies. I am so excited to share this fact with children because I expect the surprising reaction from the children. I am so curious to see children’s reaction when they learn the digestive system and the working systems for some animals. I was happy to be in the class because this topic helped me to understand in simpler forms for children and now I can approach and discuss about this topic with them more easily.

Resource for living world – animal and reason chosen

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I chose animal cards for the resource because, with these animal cards, children and I can discuss about classifying the animals in the different groups. These cards have different type of animals so we can have wider discussion. Children would show their interests when they learn about the differences between insects and animals and I expect many unimaginable questions from children. I am very excited with this activity and hearing the many questions about animals from children would be interesting!

living world – plant

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1. Artefact and learning description for living world – plant

Last Tuesday, we had to sort the fruit and vegetable into groups for the activity. For this activity, we had some fruits and vegetables. Firstly, we divided into two groups, which were ‘growing in the soil’ and ‘growing out of the soil’ because we thought this way was the easiest way. In the first group, we had apple, corn, grape, pumpkin, tomato and bean. In the second group, we got potato, carrot and cabbage. From this activity, the interesting thing was that tomato is fruit!!  I thought it was the vegetable because I learnt that in the school but it was the one of fruits! Also, I learnt that the different thing between fruit and vegetable. The fruit has a seed in the body but the vegetables do not contain the seed in the body and this is why the tomato is fruit. Isn’t it interesting?

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2. Artefact and learning description for living world – plant

Secondly, we learnt all about the process a plant and their reproductive system.

We cut the flower into half and saw what was in there. We saw stigma, petal, and ovary. Also, we cut the stem of the flower and we found the way of water

Reflection on living world – plant

Living world (plant) was pretty interesting topic to me. Before the activities, I did not have any interest on the topic of living world because I am not good at studying or growing plants. However, through the activities I found that learning about plants was interesting and there were many things that I could teach young children without it seeming so complex. I loved doing the small activities in class and outside of class. I learnt about sorting different fruit and vegetables in different groups. Although this was simple activity, I was seriously agonised so I am excited about how children would divide the items and what group would they use. Also, When they cut the flower and see what is going on in the flower, children would like the learning about flower reproduction. I think learning this topic is a good for children to learn where their food comes from and why plants are classified as alive even though they cannot walk and talk like people. I look forward to go to centres and work with children through these ideas and I would happy if I am helpful for their learning

Resource for living world – plant, and reason chosen

http://thequeso.com/planting-pumpkins-is-easy/

This activity is about planting pumpkin. I chose this activity because I thought children could become familiar with plant through planting pumpkin. Also this activity is simple so children can easily follow the instruction. After few weeks, children would impressive when the pumpkins appear and they would think ‘where are the pumpkins from?’ and this is evident of learning, therefore I think this activity can be a good way for children to learning the living world – plant.

115 Required reading 3 (Alward, Nourot, Scales, & Van Hoorn, 1999)

According to Alward, Nourot, Scales, & Van Hoorn, “We believe the goal of science education for early childhood education is to encourage and support these dispositions”, which mean from the reading is “curiosity” and “a desire to critically assess the validity of anwers” (Alward, Nourot, Scales, & Van Hoorn, 1999).It says that, it is important that teachers’ supporting of children’s scientific play and curiosity in early childhood centers, because this is a teachers’ role when they teach science in the classroom. Also young children’s scientific interests and curiosities show the children’s understanding so they are deserve to get our attention and respect (Alward, Nourot, Scales, & Van Hoorn, 1999). We can give our attention and respect to children through give more learning opportunities with more questions and recommendations.

 

This reading also said “Children learn science content within an organized framework of scientific concepts, and through their involvement in the processes of science” (Alward, Nourot, Scales, & Van Hoorn, 1999). This shows that scientific processes, concepts and content are important for building children’s understanding and foundations for future learning. Therefore, teachers must observe children’s play carefully in each processes and we need to know how much children understand about the concepts and contents. Also according to reading, In a balanced science curriculum that is play-centered, the particular scientific content, concepts, and processes that children explore at any moment are expressions of the children’s own curiosity, interest, and creativity” (Alward, Nourot, Scales, & Van Hoorn, 1999).

Astronomy

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Want to see Video? —> http://youtu.be/FBi2j9x_8SY

Today, I had some astronomy activities, which was very interesting. For this activity we used a lamp and two different sizes of polystyrene balls to represent the sun, earth and moon. We painted on two polystyrene balls so we can recognise easily. We draw the earth on big polystyrene ball and we painted cold on small polystyrene ball so it can be seen as the moon. We connected the earth and the moon with stick, and spun it around the lamp, the sun. When the lamp created shadows, we could see moon phases and different eclipses. I thought this could be done with children to show the rotation and tilt of the Earth, of course the orbit of the moon around the Earth and that around the sun.

 

Activity 2

Youtube Video —> http://youtu.be/peFHCG1n2yg

The second activity was about phases of the moon. In the room, there was a board, which was stuck with the different shadow position of the moon. While some friends hold the board up, I could stand in the middle of the board and can see each lunar phase, from a full moon to no part of the moon visible at all. This was very simple way to learn about the rotation of the moon.

Reflection for Astronomy

I thought I already knew about the relationship between the sun, moon and the earth. However, I had learnt so much information in child’s point of view that I always kind of took for granted. This topic, Astronomy in early childhood can look at day and night change, seasons, climate and many other components beyond planet Earth. Children would be amazed about knowing the Earth’s solar system, including the sun, moon and each planet. While I was doing the activity about the Earth rotation, I wondered, could children really believe this even they could not feel it but I realised that I could not feel it either but my head already knew that the earth is turning even now. Children are active learners so if the teacher shows visual examples and encourage them to involve in their learning, children would learn naturally about the earth, the sun and moon. In addition, talking about the seasons change, and day and night could be a good way to teach about the rotation and tilt of the earth. We can talk about how solar eclipses and lunar eclipses occur in different circumstances through the activity that I talked above. I was really happy to learn about this topic because I learnt many things and I am excited for teaching children about astronomy because there are so many things to talk with young children.

Resource for Astronomy

http://www.enchantedlearning.com/crafts/astronomy/solarsystemmodel/

This activity is about making a model of solar system with the sun and other eight planets. I chose this activity for astronomy resource because this would be a fun and useful activity to teach children about space and solar system in the centre. By using different size and colour of planets, children can learn difference between each planet; furthermore, they would be able to create their own solar system. Through this activity, children can explore their excitement about the topic and I believe this activity would develop children’s knowledge of solar system.

 

Geology

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This week we learnt about Geology and learnt that there are many types of stones and one of the stone is ‘igneous rock’ and friends and I made edible ‘igneous rock’, Hokey Pokey! We needed sugar, golden syrup and baking soda to make it. Firstly, Jasmine brought the sugar and syrup into a pot and Cherry simmered it over a low heat for us. We quickly removed it when it changed to liquid and added baking soda. It was getting gold when we stirred it. Finally, we pour into a greased tin and waited until becoming cold. The process of cooling hokey pokey was similar with solidification of magma from volcano. It was very fun and useful activity to understand the process of volcano and it can be a sweet and useful activity to children too.

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The second activity was Toasted Sandwiches. We simply made sandwiches with breads, marmite, cheese, and then toasted! This toasted sandwiches was an example of rock formation as the bread being the Earth’s crust, and the marmite and cheese showing as and lava from a volcano eruption. We can explain to children how layers are formed when pressure or heat is occurred through this activity.

Reflection on Geology

Learning the topic Planet Earth or Geology for children was interesting. It was an opportunity for me to realise about the earth in child’s point of view. The topic focused on the layer of the Earth, rocks and many other components that make up planet Earth such as ‘inner core’, ‘outer core’, ‘mantle’ and ‘crust’. These terms may seem hard to children but teaching about geology would be fun if we have lots of activities with various resources that portray the idea of the earth. A sandwich activity can be the one of the activities of rock formation as it can be done easily in a centre of at home with children. Also making hokey pokey or cookie would give children the opportunity to learn the difference between sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic rocks and how they are made. Personally I was very interested to learn about the rocks even though I knew those already. This is because the activity, Hokey Pokey. When I was young I often made and ate it but I have never thought about that is relevant to Geology, not even once. However, now I knew that this hokey pokey can be an activity of geology and this was very impressive. In addition, I learnt about disasters such as earthquakes and volcano, and also the process these disasters. I think these are important to remember to teach children about geology because children would not able to understand why and how these disasters occur, therefore I as a teacher need to share the information in simple, easily understood ways, and do more interesting activities that can explain about earthquakes and volcano then, children would be able to grasp.

 

Resource for Geology

Video —> http://www.thecraftyclassroom.com/CraftGeologyEarthLayers.html

This activity is about making Earths Crusts, Core and Craft with various colours of play dough. Children can use different colour for each different step of core, mantle and crusts of the Earth. For example, Red is inner Core, Orange is outer Core, Yellow is mantle, brown is curst and blue and green is water and land. Then children would recognise the earth more easily with colours. When children finally made the earth with some land shapes, they can cut a wedge from of the earth in model form! Children would be amazed about their work and that is the real form of the Earth. This is why I chose this activity for young children.

Reading – Chalufour (2010)

According to Chalufour reading, it tells the importance of having Pedagogical Science Knowledge (PKS) including both understanding of science concepts, and of children and how they learn. Chalfour says the knowledge of children and how children learn are also important, as these are also the parts of pedagogical science knowledge. Accoring to Chalfour reading, teachers must have an understanding of how children learn in order to teach science so at the first; teachers should introduce the content at an adult level and then “translate this knowledge to appropriated content” for young children. Also, Chalufour says that “hand-on, inquiry-based investigation” is for both adults’ and children’s learning. It offers the opportunity to encourage teachers’ confidence in both learning and teaching science so in order to teach science effectively, teachers should have pedagogical science knowledge and confident in their own abilities to engage in science.

115 Material World – Chemical Change

Artefact and learning description for Chemical Change

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Youtube Video –> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0o4b-znF0Sg&feature=youtu.be

Today, I had some chemical and physical change activities. Friends and I had ‘Chemical Popguns’ activity. For this activity, we needed a plastic soft-drink bottle, a cork, vinegar and sodium bicarbonate. Firstly, we pour vinegar into the bottle until it’s one-third full and we gathered two teaspoons of sodium bicarbonate on the paper. Vivien quickly push the cork into the bottle straight after added sodium bicarbonate. What happened? The cork exploded from the bottle and lot of foam flowed out.

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The second activity was ‘Baking Pikelets’. We actually cooked during the lesson and it was a fabulous chemical experiment. Firstly, we mixed with egg, sugar, flour, baking powder and salt, and added milk to form a smooth and thick batter. We heated a frying pan before pour batter on it and we waited until bubbles appear on the surface of each pikelet. When we heated the batter, it was no longer liquid.

Half page reflection for Chemical Change

Matters can change in two ways, which are physical change and chemical change. Teaching children about the chemical and physical changes are considered important, as these are such a relevant part of teaching science in early childhood education. Children would meet changes quite often in their world as soon as they grow up. Actually I was shocked by the fact that the cooking can be the science. During the science lesson, I made pikelets and I saw the process of chemical change, the batters changed into solid, pikelets as I heated and I learnt that this was chemical change, as the change cannot be reversed. However, physical change is usually easy to reverse. For example, melting an ice cube or breaking a bottle is the example of physical change. Teaching chemical and physical change would be exciting as there are variety activities for young children and I am sure that these activities are stimulate children’s curiosity and interest. Teaching this topic to young children would be interesting, and I am excited to give children the chance to explore chemical change and help them learn to understand it. Learning about chemical change can also be made fun and curiosity, getting children involved in activities

Resource for Chemical Change and reason chosen

http://notjustcute.com/2010/06/22/reactions-five-fun-science-activities-that-fizz-foam-and-pop/

In this activity, children place a small amount of baking soda in the balloon and attach the balloon to a small-mouthed bottle with vinegar inside. Lift the balloon up to allow the baking soda to drop into the bottle. “BOOM” The reaction would occur. Through this activity, children were then given the opportunity to explore the knowledge of chemical change. I choose this activity to teach chemical change to young children because the reaction from this activity could provide the concept of chemical change to children. They would be amazed when the balloon was inflated and they would ask what happen, why and how. Through these learning process, children would able to develop their understanding of chemical change.