We are beginning at the beginning! In this next season of the podcast, I am sharing what we like to call your roadmap for teaching science. And this first leg of our journey is going to be all about the early years!
Welcome to the Tips for Homeschool Science Show where we are breaking down the lofty ideals of teaching science into building blocks you can use in your homeschool.
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Since this is the first episode of season 4, I wanted to take a moment to explain what these episodes will be about. After many years of learning about science, teaching science, and homeschooling my kiddos, I believe that there are the four stages of teaching science:
These are the phases of learning your student will go through as he or she matures and grows his or her intellect.
In each of the stages, you will be using the three keys to teaching science, but your goals, tools, and methods will look a bit different. I shared quite a bit about the three keys back in season 2, so won’t go into detail about those this season. If you haven’t listened to those episodes, check them out here:
Season 4 of the Tips for Homeschool Science Show is going to serve as your roadmap through those four stages. We are going to take a very broad look at teaching science. And my hope is that this will give you a big picture view of how to teach science, which will help you to determine what each year needs to look like for your unique homeschool.
For the next three episodes, we are going to look at the early years, or what some call the preschool years. I know what you are thinking, my preschooler doesn’t need formal lessons. He needs to play and learn – and I agree to a point.
Your little ones are learning daily about their environment. They are constantly taking in information about the world around them through hands-on experiences. And we can capitalize on that natural curiosity to teach them about science because when we teach science early and often, it makes those later, high school years much, much easier on our students.
At this stage, our early years' students are more than ready and willing to learn. We tend to focus on teaching them the basics, such as colors, letters, and numbers—as we should! We also provide them with structured play, such as a kitchen set or a dress-up station. And, we make sure that they have time to build their motor skills by creating art and exploring music.
However, all too often, we choose not to introduce our youngest students to the wonders of science, because we think it is too difficult a subject for them to grasp. And while some concepts in science will go way over a younger kiddo’s head, we can introduce them to science by presenting them with the concepts found in their environment or in simple scientific demonstrations.
After all, the early years are a time when children are naturally wired to be curious, which makes them fully prepared to learn about science!
These early years are a good time to introduce our children to science. And the good news is that by showing them the miracle of the scientific processes going on around them, we are constructing a basis for future learning.
The goal for science during the early years is simple:
Don’t feel guilty or pressured that you have to complete a rigorous formal science curriculum. Your goal is simply to introduce the student to the basics of science
Think of your student during the early years as a completely blank slate. He or she is more than ready and willing to learn, but their motor muscles aren’t quite ready for all the writing that formal education entails.
So during these years, your goal will be to introduce them to various concepts and ideas found in science through a very hands-on approach. This will help them to build a basic framework, or bucket, they can fill during the elementary years.
Science during the early years is about capitalizing on the natural curiosity that resides inside of your child as you introduce him or her the wonders of science.
Next week, we are going to chat about some of the tools you can use to introduce science during the early years.
Until then . . . thanks for listening – I hope that you leave our time together encouraged in your homeschooling journey.
Let me know what you think by leaving a rating or review in iTunes or in the podcasting app you use to listen to the Tips for Homeschool Science Show. I would appreciate you taking the time to do so as it inspires those of us who work so hard to put this podcast together for you to enjoy and helps others to find this podcast.
I would love to also connect with you beyond the earbuds! You can find me on Instagram or drop me an email through the link below.
I can’t wait to share another piece of the roadmap in our next episode, but until then – I hope you have a great week playing with science!
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