The Early Years: Developing Observation Skillsby: Peggy Ashbrook

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We typically know children are learning when they are able to make sense of an object’s materials or a situation that was previously a bit mysterious and communicate what they have figured out. But what about observing? One of the process skills listed in the National Science Education Standards (NRC 1996), observation is something students have been practicing all their lives. The objective of this month's lesson is to have children make bubbles and observations about their shape.

  • Elementary
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Reviews (4)
  • on Mon Dec 05, 2016 1:32 PM

This article really focuses in on how children should learn to use and develop their senses. For example, it gives the teacher different ways of asking questions to help children focus on one sense. It also provides different materials that could be used for students to help practice using their senses.

Michelle A
Michelle A

  • on Tue May 03, 2011 11:10 PM

This article gives background information and a suggested activity to help teach students to make observations about what they see vs what they think they should see when observing something. I like the background information it provides teachers as well as the simple activity to do with students to illustrate this idea.

Kate  (Louisville, CO)
Kate (Louisville, CO)

  • on Wed Jul 31, 2013 10:34 AM

This article discusses two observation skills - using your nose and using your eyes. Students smell things in covered objects so that cannot see what they are smelling. They also blow bubbles from square bubble blowers and see that it forms round bubbles. These activities encourage students to observe what is going on around them.

Betty Paulsell  (Kansas City, MO)
Betty Paulsell (Kansas City, MO)

  • on Thu Aug 25, 2011 11:24 AM

Encouraging students to make observations is a fundamental process for budding scientists. In the activity in this article students make bubbles by placing objects such as cups into a larger container of water. Students change shapes that are submerged to see if the bubbles change shape. The concept of gas is introduced as well. After this students can use shapes to make bubble solutions and make more observations.

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

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