The science “Big Books” series displays scientific inquiry and provides the opportunity for children to develop a range of skills. A multisensory center based playtime allows the children to independently choose and further explore themed topics on their own in the classroom. For example, after reading the “Big Book”, Sun and Shadows Sky and Space, children explore light and shadows on Groundhogs Day by tracing each others silhouettes on the wall using an overhead light projector, black paper taped on the wall, and white colored pencils.
Students will explore objects, materials, and events, raise questions, make careful observations, engage in simple investigations, describe, including shape, size, number, compare, sort, classify, and order, record observations using words, pictures, charts, and graphs, use a variety of simple tools to extend observations, identify patterns and relationships, develop tentative explanations and ideas, work collaboratively with others, share and discuss ideas and listen to new perspectives throughout their daily routines.
Participation in large and small group classroom activities and discussions, recording and documenting oral reflections, and reflecting and interpreting evidence found individually or in a group are assessed in the science curriculum. Daily informal observation is critical to determine what learning is taking place and provides direction for future learning experiences. It allows teachers to monitor and adjust lessons, to provide additional practice, or to extend learning.