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Early science for the very young – how to acquaint children aged from 1 to 2 years with natural objects and materials

Ana Cigale (2014) Early science for the very young – how to acquaint children aged from 1 to 2 years with natural objects and materials. Diploma thesis.

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    Preschool children express the wish to explore nature very early because they feel extremely motivated by it. However, they can acquire deep knowledge only through direct experience and active learning is vital in this respect. In active learning, a child interacts with objects and builds his or her comprehension. Science education should start as soon as possible so that children can start developing a positive, favourable and responsible attitude towards nature. The development begins in early childhood and children foster it especially through frequent positive experience. Hence, experience with living nature is a good way to build knowledge and a positive attitude towards nature. In addition, teachers must also set an example with their personal attitude towards nature, thus influencing the children as well. For the purpose of the thesis we designed several activities intended for children aged from 1 to 2 years. They explored living and non-living nature. The activities were based on children's active learning and free exploration. Numerous objects and materials were available to them in the science corner, where they were exploring the characteristics of the objects and materials. We established that setting up a science corner is an appropriate activity for early science education of children aged from 1 to 2 years. We also noted that the children were more interested in inanimate objects than animate ones. They tended to play longer at a time in the corner with non-living objects, but returned more often to the corner with living objects. In my view, it is possible to encourage early science education and a positive attitude towards nature by putting children in contact with natural objects and materials.

    Item Type: Thesis (Diploma thesis)
    Keywords: active learning, child's play, early science, science corner, natural objects and materials, education for sustainable development
    Number of Pages: 37
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    viš. pred. dr. Marjanca KosMentor
    Link to COBISS: http://www.cobiss.si/scripts/cobiss?command=search&base=50126&select=(ID=10047049)
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 2122
    Date Deposited: 12 May 2014 12:02
    Last Modified: 12 May 2014 12:02
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/2122

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