The Early Years: Science Tickets by: Peggy Ashbrook

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Teachers can spark interest in a science topic by using “science tickets”—special objects offered to children as a way to transition to the science room or into a small group to do a science activity. Objects ranging from ordinary (shells, leaves, or sticks) to unusual (photos, crystals, or plastic worms) appeal to young children’s curiosity and can stimulate small group discussions, providing a forum for sharing discoveries while developing language.

  • Elementary
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Reviews (6)
  • on Thu Sep 29, 2016 7:25 PM

This is truly a wonderful idea to use with students! I believe that this would allow the students to truly inquire on what they have in their hands and to question what it has to do with science and what they are about to learn. This I feel is the best way to providing independent learning. This also provides as a wonderful way to do a pre-assessment to understand what their prior knowledge is. This is definitely a great article to read!

Victoria Wilt
Victoria Wilt

  • on Thu Jul 14, 2016 6:05 PM

What a wonderful idea. I love the use of a science ticket. This helps the children transition more freely with ease through any science activity in place. Using this every time will ensure that the children will know what to do. This is a great concept into many things such as assessing students prior knowledge, giving the students the 'center stage' in speaking along with a great tool to introducing a new vocabulary. I love this idea.


  • on Tue Mar 04, 2014 11:44 PM

Science tickets create an opportunity for students to make their own observations about an object before exploring the subject as a class. Science tickets would be an excellent tool for students as it gives them the opportunity to explore the subject on their own first, and sparks their interest. The idea of tickets could be incorporated into other subjects, as well as in science.

Callan H
Callan H

  • on Wed Aug 31, 2011 12:16 PM

This article introduces the reader to a technique called ‘science tickets.’ These are small objects such as a shell or leaf that are used to initiate a science activity generated by the teacher. It is a sort of transition tool. Theses tickets need to be interesting and can be used to have children start discussions in small groups. The example in this activity provided uses plastic worms as a ticket followed by observing life using real worms. This is a neat idea that needs to be used consistently.

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

  • on Mon Jul 25, 2011 3:13 PM

The author talks about using "Science Tickets" (a small, simple object) in primary grades to help the children transition into their "science" activities. As the children learn that they will get to hold the object and that it will relate to the topic about to be explored, they begin to learn about properties or characteristics of objects. The article provides "modeling questions" to help the teacher guide their students in their investigations. The author also provides an activity to help the children learn about living things that is easy to implement and something the children will really enjoy discussing.

Sue Garcia
Sue Garcia

  • on Fri May 27, 2011 2:56 PM

The Idea behind science tickets used with young children is to begin the sharing of this object as a point of exploration and discussion as a group. A science ticket would make a great starting point and to prepare young students. By each students holding the object and talking about it you can find out their beginning conceptions.

Arlene Jurewicz Leighton
Arlene Jurewicz Leighton

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