Supporting your science program in the lower primary school years

Education & Development Blog

While many science concepts can seem over complicated for young primary aged children many of the fundamental science skills exist in a form that can be simple and accessible for children of all ages. Here are some of the skills that you can reinforce at home, which will support the scientific learning your children are touching on at school.

Observation - including nature cycles in your community

Observation is a fundamental science skill, which scientists use observing the cause and effects of the experiments that they undertake. Your children can start to develop observation skills around the home and while they travel to school, which you can encourage by pointing out changes such as falling leaves, changing weather conditions and birds nesting and growing bigger. Noticing these changes is a start to exploring the ideas of nature cycles and natural biology.

Measurement - including personal measurement

Children are often intrigued by the relative size of different numbers. As children are always growing taking some measurements not only of height and weight, but also wrist circumference and heart rate is an interesting way to encourage children to consider the different ways that we measure time, physical size and density. It can also be useful to attach a travelometer to their bikes or tricycles to measure their bike riding distance as they change over time. This is a good way to both show different units of measurement but also demonstrate how these changes can be shown by graphs or other physical displays.

Following directions - including recipes

The experimental method involves following direct written instructions in the right order. This can be a challenging thing for some children who are not that patient to begin with, but recipes for tasty cakes and treats can be a great way to practise this skill, as failing to follow the right steps in baking can lead to a misshapen or funny tasting result. The immediacy of the result is a great demonstration of the importance of following a process - and if you find a poorly written recipe it can be a great demonstration of the value of writing clear experimental protocols for people who try to replicate your process afterwards!

Science doesn't need to be in a laboratory. Many of the skills that lead to success in later scientific study are built by fun home based activities for primary school students, which supplement the school science curriculum at place like Catholic Education Services.


3 August 2015

Learn more so you can earn more

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