Content topics appropriate for the group to investigate are those relevant to young children’s lives.

Teachers reflect upon children’s immediate environment and questions they may have about those surroundings. Teachers understand that preschool children develop understanding of new concepts through concrete, hands on opportunities. Abstract curricular topics that children will explore in elementary school are not considered appropriate for lengthy investigation.

The group may have conversations related to certain abstract concepts, such as the stages of the moon; however, these topics are not given expanded curricular time. Capitalizing on teachable moments will serve as a valuable way to explore some science topics not suitable for whole group extended curriculum, such as feeling one’s heart beating after running or jumping.


Science can encompass the following branches:

• Life sciences: life cycles, animal behavior, plants

• Physical sciences: velocity, balance, motion

• Earth sciences: erosion, rocks, weather, seasons

• Chemistry: change, volume, weight, mass



Development Curriculum For Science

While opportunities to expose children to science concepts occur naturally throughout the day, teachers will plan intentional science activities. Small group time offers an environment conducive to discussions and observations of children’s scientific thinking process.

Teachers utilize open-ended questions to provoke children’s curiosity and understanding of different topics. New vocabulary words, such as hypothesize, predict, and observe, are introduced during discussions and activities

. When children hear scientific language in direct relation with their

explorations, they are more likely to incorporate these new words into their repertoire of vocabulary.

Scientific investigations evolve from questions and observations children have about their immediate environment. Background knowledge and information can provide children with additional questions to investigate and will develop a beginning understanding of a particular topic.

Investigations begin with activities that explore the basic principles of a topic or concept.



Extended activities allow children to build upon new understanding. For example, when the group explores the melting process, they begin by observing ice melt. After observing the basic principles of melting, teachers strategically add other variables such as salt and colored water.

Teachers provide children with various tools for scientific explorations, such as magnifying glasses, tweezers, clear containers, and reference books. Opportunities for children to record their observations are also provided.



Science Centers
-    Develop an awareness of and respect for the natural environment
-    Develop observation and discrimination skills
-    Encourage a child's curiosity
-    Encourage sorting and classifying skills on the basis of size, shape and texture
-    Develop an awareness of their bodies

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