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Children and teachers exploring physical phenomena and chemical processes through everyday verbs
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Science and Mathematics Education. Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå Centre for Gender Studies (UCGS). (UmSER)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7273-5442
2015 (English)Conference paper, Abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Our aim with this project is to facilitate inquiry-based science learning in preschool (school form for children aged 1-5 years). The project is conducted in a design-based form, where researcher and practitioners share the problem formulation. Models for teaching are developed in close relation to practice, through several action research cycles. This study ties to Sikder and Fleer’s (2014) research on young children’s developing knowledge in science through everyday concepts. Further, it draws on Lenz Taguchi and Hultman’s (2010) emphasis on children’s powerful relations to places and things. Data is collected through recorded project meetings as well as photos, movies and accounts from practice, and group interviews with teachers. This is analysed in relation to the research question: ''what are the characteristics of a model for teaching that facilitates inquiry-based science learning in preschool?''. We have informed the caretakers about the project and they have given their written consent to our recording children’s activities. Our main finding is the vast range of exploring phenomena in science that teachers have come up with by working with everyday verbs. Starting from verbs appear to help teachers in recognising the scientific phenomena involved in children's interplay with the physical world. Further, the verbs help in formulating questions that can be answered by scientific inquiry, such as: ''what factors are important for how something melts/rolls/blends/glides/sticks?''. Due to these results we aim to further develop the model of verb-based inquiry for the benefit of preservice and in-service teachers.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
inquiry-based science education, preschool teachers, everyday verbs, scientific phenomena, design-based research
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Research subject
educational work; didactics of natural science
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-109699OAI: diva2:858755
25th conference of European Early Childhood Education Research Association (EECERA)Barcelona, Spain, 7th-11th September 2015
Available from: 2015-10-05 Created: 2015-10-05 Last updated: 2016-03-10Bibliographically approved

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Areljung, Sofie
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Department of Science and Mathematics EducationUmeå Centre for Gender Studies (UCGS)
Pedagogical Work

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