Exploration and Discovery
Science for children, like mathematics, is an active process of inquiry. Meaningful science learning in the early childhood years happens when teachers plan activities around “big ideas” or concepts that children are developmentally primed to acquire.
Our teachers plan specific activities and create physical environments that support childrens' inquiries and investigations. In order for children to develop a true understanding of concepts, we provide them with ample time to explore materials, make predictions and create and revise theories. Our teachers help children consolidate and deepen their learning by encouraging them to reflect on, document and share their experiences.
Building and Experimenting
Science at Lesley Ellis is a two-year “looping curriculum,” including topics such as alternative energy and robotics. Like much of our curriculum, our science program focuses on experiential learning and often involves children working in small groups.
Teachers prepare focused, guided investigations as well as provide time for open-ended exploration. Students are regularly engaged in activities that require them to work collaboratively, think independently, experiment and problem-solve. For example, a class might be tasked with collaboratively identifying a “mystery substance” based on observation, measurement and research. At another time of year, they might be putting the finishing touches on a blueprint for launching a tennis ball from one side of the classroom to the other while avoiding obstacles. And later on, might be building a model for a solar house.