Kindergarten Science Overview
The Kindergarten Science program consists of hands-on experiences in which students are taught to investigate and explore. The Inquiry-based, hands-on science curriculum is designed to provide children with exciting science experiences that extend their fascination with the world and help them learn the science skills and concepts they will need later in school and in life.
The Science Curriculum for Kindergarten consists of two basic units:
Animals Two By Two: This unit provides young students with close and personal interaction with some common land and water animals. Appropriate classroom habitats are established, and students learn to care for the animals. In four activities the animals are studied in pairs. Students observe and care for one animal over time, and then they are introduced to another animal similar to the first but with differences in structure and behavior. This process enhances opportunities for observation, communication, and comparison.
The Senses: Senses begins with a challenge to the children to use all their senses to describe common objects and to begin to think about how different senses tell them different things about objects in their world. This introduction is followed by groups of learning experiences that encourage the children to focus on and extend each of the five senses. Classroom activities are supplemented with walks outside the school. Simple description is followed by comparing, sorting, and classifying objects by various properties. The senses are compared one with the other, and discussions raise the questions of what it would be like not to be able to hear, or see. Throughout the unit, discussions, charts, and the children's own science notebooks are used to encourage recording through drawing and building a language description.
Through other classroom experiences which integrate with reading and math, students will also explore weather and basic health concepts. By the end of kindergarten, students will have a beginning understanding of the following Iowa Core Standards
Science as Inquiry
· Ask questions about objects, organisms, and events in the environment.
· Plan and conduct simple investigations.
· Use tools to gather data and extend the senses.
· Use mathematics in scientific inquiry.
· Use data to construct reasonable explanations.
· Communicate investigations and explanations.
Earth and Space
· Understand and apply knowledge of observable information about daily and seasonal weather conditions.
· Understand and apply knowledge of events that have repeating patterns.
· Understand and apply knowledge of the characteristics of living things and how living things are both similar to and different from each other and from non-living things.
· Understand and apply knowledge of the basic needs of plants and animals and how they interact with each other and their physical environment.
· Understand and apply knowledge of good health habits.