Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Kids love science, why wait??

Reading the article in this link, made me wonder why we have been waiting to really teach kids about science. This article, Educators are taking a new approach to teaching science, reminded me that in the U.S. the big emphasis on science doesn't come until after 3rd grade. In many places it doesn't happen until middle school. Young children love science, it is exciting, rewarding and interactive. Why is it viewed as an "extra" in early grades? 

I understand the time argument. We need to teach them basic skills first, yes. Why can't we infuse science into more of what we do?

I appreciate that in Florida it is being recognized that even though the students are not tested on science content until 5th grade they need to be teaching the material much earlier. Florida, I'm sure, is not the first state to deal with this issue. What is more important to me, is that kids are missing out on the fun of science from the get-go. We are missing out on a ripe opportunity to foster a thirst and love of science and learning when we don't offer our kids these experiences at an early age. I love science, all kinds, and see it as the glue that holds everything together. I'm a little bias since I taught science for 10 yrs. at the middle school level. 

A bigger issue is that our country is struggling in a global job market. Many other countries are beating us when it comes to math and science. Anyone see a connection here? What are your thoughts?

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