Early Childhood

Science in Kindergarden

What kind of science activities can I do with children in kindergarden that would really grasp their attention?

Alicia Hernandez
Alicia Hernandez
90 Activity Points

Hi Alicia -- Kindergarteners are naturally curious and a lot of what seems to be "play" is actually learning. For ideas, take a look at the "early years" column in NSTA's Science and Children journal. Each month there is a ready-to-use investigation for younger students. You can search the back issues for more ideas.    Peggy Ashbrook, the author, also has an NSTA blog (also called The Early Years) in which she posts ideas. Perhaps you and a colleague  could work together on looking at these lessons. 

Mary B

Mary Bigelow
Mary Bigelow
10110 Activity Points

Hi Alicia,

In general, I feel that any type of hands-on activity or experiment will allow children in kindergarten to better grasp the concept as well as help them stay engaged and motivated to participate in the lesson.  One of my favorite hands-on activities that I have seen teachers do is having the students use their five senses to explore objects, such as food items.  This teaches students how to use their bodies (sensory organs) to be observant of the things around them as well as enhances their vocabulary when they orally explain what they hear, smell, see, feel, and taste.  I have also seen teachers take their students outside of the classroom to explore their natural environment.  I personally would love to take students on a nature walk during the fall to have them observe the leaves on trees, the petals on flowers, behavior of animals/insects, and weather.  Students can also collect specimens that they can bring into the classroom to further explore and discuss.  For instance, if they collected leaves, students can study the leaves’ shape, size, and color, which can lead the class in a discussion about tree species and chlorophyll. 

Other kinds of science activities can include singing songs and doing fingerplays.  Some of my personal favorite songs/fingerplays include The Itsy Bitsy Spider, Row Row Row Your Boat, and Inch By Inch, The Garden Song.  This experience will reinforce science concepts as well as allow the students to have fun and enhance their vocabulary.

In addition, there are many websites available for teachers to use, such as www.scholastic.com and http://www.discoveryeducation.com/.  These resources provide teachers with book lists, activities, lesson plans, and worksheets for all grade levels.   

~Melanie

Melanie Biddinger
Melanie Biddinger
495 Activity Points

Hi Alicia, 

I am currently taking a Science Methods course at the University of Northern Iowa and this one of the topics we covered in class last week. At UNI, education major are fortunate enough to have a model classroom on campus to provide us ways to not only arrange our classroom, but also to get experience with using and operating different types of learning activities. Furthermore, one of the areas that we really looked at was science. I learned that the best way to engage students, but especially kindergarden students, in science activities is through hands-on experiences. More specifically, learning through play. One way to do this is by providing your students with blocks and allowing them to build what ever they want. Some other activities include a water table, gyroscopes, creating a homemade kazoo, and an assortment of shapes that could be arranged to make anything they want. By teaching science to students in this way, it allows the students to develop an abundant about of skills that will benefit them in the future. Some of the skills they can learn are problem solving and communication skills, which are also skills that allign with engineering practices. I hope this helps!

Baylee Kleitsch
Baylee Kleitsch
2426 Activity Points

Doing a lot of hands on science experiments with kindergarden students will really grasp and keep their attention. I recently had the opprotunity to explore an early learning center with a wide variety of activities to use in a classroom. I was able to use a water table and I really enjoyed this because it engauged my senses and I was able to stay very engauged. Using a water table in a kindergarden class would be great to keep the students attention and it is a great tool when teaching about water flow. Any kind of lesson that involves students using their senses, they will be very engauged and you will beable to keep their attention. 

Brooke Pigman
Brooke Pigman
3130 Activity Points

Hi Alicia, I am a student at the University of Norther Iowa majoring in Early Childhood Education. I am currently taking Teaching Elementary School Science course. This semester, we have done a lot of experiements with sinking and floating. I think this would be a great topic for kindergarten students. We were able to predict if an object would sink or float, then observe and record what happened. We used a variety of objects, such as fruit. We did apples, oranges, bananas, watermelon, and grapes. We even peeled them to see if that made a difference, as well as cutting them. Some other objects we investigated were made out of different materials, such as plastic and metal. You can explore a lot of different materials and build off of them, such as wondering why boats float and the different shapes of boats. How can cruise ships and cargo ships hold so much weight? I hope this information helps you! 

Emily Flockhart
Emily Flockhart
3390 Activity Points

Hi Alicia!

A great website to look at is: https://www.weareteachers.com/kindergarten-science-activities/

This webiste gives several science activities that engage kindergardener's in the classroom. They are each very fun filled with learning!

Hope this helps,

Brooke 

Brooke Edwards
Brooke Edwards
463 Activity Points

Hi Alicia, 

I am currently an elementary education major studying at the University of Northern Iowa. I had the opportunity to go to an early childhood classroom last week. In this classroom there were multiple activites for the students to do that grasp their attention, while also having them learn. One thing in the classroom was blocks. These blocks were all different sizes and allowed students to build with them. The students were able to build whatver they wanted to then could roll a marble down it to see if the marble could get to the bottom. Another item that I saw in the classroom was shape puzzles that the students could put different pattern blocks in to fill the puzzle. This allowed for students to have different blocks as their neighbors. It also helps the students develop problem solving skills. This skill is something that the students will use for the rest of their lives. 

Hope this helps,

Camie 

Camie Crawford
Camie Crawford
2830 Activity Points

Hello Alicia, 

I am currently a student at the University of Northern Iowa studying elementary education. We have been talking about how to include science in early childhood. One great way to include science is by having students use blocks to build different structures, such as roadways, bridges, ramps, and pathways. They can then test out these structures and see if they can run a car along them or a marble. Another thing students in early childhood can do is build building type structures and seeing how tall they can build it without it falling over. They can then see how much weight they can put on top of their struture without it falling down. Young students are able to collaborate, experiment, explain, build, test, adapt, solve problems, and create and these are all ways that they can use science to develop new skills.

Paige Faulkner
Paige Faulkner
2545 Activity Points

Hello Alicia, 

I am currently a student at the University of Northern Iowa studying elementary education. We have been talking about how to include science in early childhood. One great way to include science is by having students use blocks to build different structures, such as roadways, bridges, ramps, and pathways. They can then test out these structures and see if they can run a car along them or a marble. Another thing students in early childhood can do is build building type structures and seeing how tall they can build it without it falling over. They can then see how much weight they can put on top of their struture without it falling down. Young students are able to collaborate, experiment, explain, build, test, adapt, solve problems, and create and these are all ways that they can use science to develop new skills.

Paige Faulkner
Paige Faulkner
2545 Activity Points

Hello Alicia,

I am currently a student at the University of Northern Iowa. In my science methods course we have discussed how bringing in students interests can get them active in science. For example one thing that students seem to be really interested in right now is how to make slime. By using students interests and making activities hands in students in kindergarten are able to learn and build an interest in the science field. 

Stephanie Kohls
Stephanie Kohls
2025 Activity Points

Hello!

Science in kindergarten consists of a lot of hands on activities. The more fun activities that are presented in the science lesson, the more attention the students will have towards the lesson. At the school I work at, the students saw a chemical reaction with a pumpkin. After we carved a face into a pumpkin and observed the insides, we poured baking soda into the pumpkin. When we added vinegar to the pumpkin, a reaction took place. The students loved the experiment and they remembered exactly what we did to make the reaction. 

Hannah Jones
Hannah Jones
1200 Activity Points

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