Can science be brought from the realm of the classroom and into everyday life, in a joyful way? Ayesha Syed wants you to find out….
“Children are born passionately eager to make as much sense as they can of things around them. If we attempt to control, manipulate, or divert this process… the independent scientist in the child disappears.”
― John Holt
There is not a single element of our lives that does not correspond with science. As modern human beings, we cannot denounce the importance of science in our lives. From medical inventions to unravelling the mysteries of the universe, Science encompasses all aspects of our physical existence. It has undeniably made our lives easier and more comfortable. The luxury of sitting back and letting the machines take over our tasks is all thanks to the curiosity and innovative power that we are born with.
Science and scientific education cultivate a sense of curiosity, and the earlier we start nurturing that, the better. Early science education forms the foundation for a child’s intellectual prowess.
Learning starts at home, and incorporating various teaching methods can prove beneficial in fostering interest in new subjects. Introducing science as an interesting aspect of our lives tingles the brains of younglings. Our inherent habit of curiosity leads us to explore things that appear unusual – questions like how cakes are baked, how plants function, or the working of the sun and the moon can create a spark in the minds of children, motivating them to seek answers.
While science education might seem daunting, the process can begin with simple home experiments. Kids learn best when they are comfortable & free, & there are various ways to create a good learning environment for them.
Science in Everyday Life:
Introducing science to kids does not have to involve expensive experiments or daunting equipment. Science is present in almost all of our daily activities, making it easy to find engaging activities for children. Simple activities often leave a lasting impression on kids.
Nurturing a scientific perspective and fostering curiosity in children can be an incredibly enjoyable activity for parents. Here are some daily activities that can ignite the joy of science in young minds.
Introducing the motions of the Sun and the Moon, and explaining the concept of day and night. Understanding how the Earth rotates and its relationship with the Sun can mark the beginning of a captivating journey into the field of astronomy.
Water is a daily science marvel, touching various aspects of our lives from brushing our teeth to taking showers and watering the plants. Kids can learn about buoyancy, surface tension, the different forms of water, and much more.
The observation of changing weather can introduce kids to the concepts of clouds, rain, and sunshine. Parents can help them connect all of these occurrences to larger atmospheric patterns. Learning about the weather can ignite an interest in meteorology in kids.
Kids can develop an interest in Biology by observing pets, insects, and backyard birds. Learning about their habitats, animal behaviours, seasonal migrations, and adaptations can lay the foundation for future explorations in Biology.
Arts and music provide another avenue for teaching kids about scientific phenomena. Mixing different colours and experimenting with different art techniques engages them in creative scientific exploration. Music can also serve as a source for teaching them about sound and how frequency, pitch, and volume come to life.
Outdoor Exploration is a Gateway to Scientific Wonders
“You cannot make people learn. You can only provide the right conditions for learning to happen.” ~ Vince Gowmon
demands patience from parents as it often leads to a mess. Whether it is outdoor exploration with mud, sticks and insects or indoors with water, children are likely to get messy. Demonstrating patience when they get dirty encourages them to explore more, which in turn builds their curiosity.
Nature, with its diverse ecosystem, flora, and fauna, serves as the best natural classroom for kids. Here, they can observe, question, experiment, and find answers. Here are some examples of how outdoor exploration nurtures a love of science in children.
Feeling the different textures, listening to various bird calls, and watching the movement of the leaves encourage kids to observe their surroundings. The outdoors offers a treasure trove of sensory experiences. Observing the various elements of nature enhances the observational skills of children, laying the foundation for scientific inquiry.
Being outdoors stimulates curiosity and inquisitiveness in children. They develop the skill of questioning things, asking how plants grow, how birds build nests, or how a rainbow is formed. These questions arise from observing their surroundings, and this curiosity fuels the desire to seek answers, setting the stage for scientific exploration.
Playing outdoor games can ignite an interest in physics. Simple games like climbing, swinging, basketball, and cricket have the potential to teach kids about gravity, momentum, and friction.
The outdoors serves as a living laboratory where children can collect rocks, leaves, or soil samples. This act fosters an early understanding of scientific processes like classification, observation, and experimentation.
Through playing and exploring outside, children can develop an interest in Mathematics. Counting the petals of a flower, measuring the height of a tree, or observing the patterns in leaves are some informal ways to integrate mathematical principles into outdoor activities.
The outdoors offers a holistic and immersive approach to learning science, nurturing an intrinsic interest. Allowing kids to explore freely is an excellent way to establish the foundations of basic scientific exploration.
Learning about science does not necessitate pushing kids into pursuing science-related careers in the future. As humans, we prosper well when we are engaged in things that spark an interest in us. Recognising that science is an integral part of our lives, and everything that surrounds us is based on the principles of science, leads to living a more conscious life. From the cells of our bodies to the stars in the galaxy, everything is governed by these principles. The capacity of the human brain to comprehend these principles and utilise them to our benefit is the biggest blessing.