What is the simplest way of organising and undertaking regular practical science and technology at Foundation Stage?
The answer must be to have available a multiplicity of activities in which the children can participate.
For it is only through participating in science and technology, while being guided by adults, that foundation stage pupils are able to have their curiosity stimulated while their knowledge of what science and technology are about grows at the same time.
In short, the doing of science and technology has to be the basis of learning, while the guidance and direction is also always present.
It is to answer this need to find multiple activities which give foundation pupils the chance actively to participate in science and technology, that we have published a new edition of Science and Technology for the Early Years (2nd edition).
And to show you exactly how we meet this aim of practical activities suitable for children at foundation level we have made an extract from the book available, completely free, on line.
This activity is one of over 100 science and technology sessions that can be undertaken in the classroom, which are explored in detail in the book. Also provided in the book are multiple ideas for designing resource areas to stimulate purposeful play.
You can order Science and Technology for the Early Years (2nd Edition) on our website either as a PDF for £12.99 or as a hardcopy book for £18.50. There is also the option to buy the hardcopy and PDF together at a discounted price of £22.40.
For example, ask the children to fill several plant pots with potting compost and plant seeds or cuttings. Water them and place transparent, colourless plastic bottles which you have cut in half over some of the pots to form mini greenhouses. Explain to the children why you are going to cover some of the pots and leave others uncovered. Otherwise treat all the pots the same: give them the same quantities of water and keep them in the same place, so that they get the same amount of light and heat. Every day observe what has happened to the plants and to the plastic bottles. As an extension activity the children could measure the temperature in the plastic bottles and in the room.
Afterwards talk with the children about which plants have grown the fastest and why that might be. Talk about how plants need warmth to grow and that they grow more rapidly in a warm atmosphere. The plastic bottles have a film of condensation on the inside which helps to keep the plants moist.
On a windy day go outside with the children and watch streamers blowing. Ask the children whether they can see and feel the effects of the wind on their faces and clothes. Watch the trees and plants move in the wind.Continue reading →
Some pupils can find it difficult to grasp the concepts in the primary Science Programmes of Study. They want answers to questions such as: Why is the sky blue? How can the universe be infinite? Why don’t planes fall out of the sky?