The Early Years: The Nuts and Bolts of Discovery Centersby: Kent Chrisman

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Young children are born scientists, exploring everything in their world around them. Yet, many teachers still find it hard to integrate science into the daily schedule. However, open-ended science or discovery centers are a perfect way for teachers to help students develop science processes and build literacy skills while they integrate science into the curriculum.

  • Elementary
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Reviews (5)
  • on Mon Dec 05, 2016 1:27 PM

This article gives many different tools and activities for young children to explore in their discovery centers. It gives the students the opportunity to explore by using their senses, predicting, measuring, problem solving, etc.

Michelle A
Michelle A

  • on Wed Dec 28, 2011 4:30 PM

One of the stopping points for primary teachers in using science as part of center work is the misconception that they need "science" materials. This article gives easy and simple ways to incorporate science into the classroom learning centers with ordinary objects.

Donna W  (Erie, PA)
Donna W (Erie, PA)

  • on Wed Aug 31, 2011 12:40 PM

Discovery centers for young children provide them opportunities to use their senses to compare and contrast objects, make predictions, share ideas, and record information. Making a ‘feely’ box for children is a great idea for a discovery center. This article explains how to make one and how to use it with young children in the classroom.

Adah  (San Antonio, TX)
Adah (San Antonio, TX)

  • on Fri May 20, 2011 1:38 PM

This article details using science centers to intrigue young students. By offering several strategies to integrate language arts and science the authors successfully demonstrate how learning can be purposeful and fun.

Maureen Stover  (Seaside, CA)
Maureen Stover (Seaside, CA)

  • on Wed Mar 12, 2014 9:07 PM

I think this activity is great for a variety of ages and touches on many key developmental areas for children under the age of 8. In my Pre-K classroom, where children are unable to write, I would work with small groups of children to record their answers or descriptions. I would also provide art materials and have children draw a representation of their understanding. I would ask children what their picture means and write down what they say (word for word). When assessing a child’s understanding I would be able to refer back to what they said and also displays children’s improvement in language and sentence structure. This activity is great for teacher just starting their career, like myself. Thank you for the great idea!


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