Finding the Best Science Workshop

Finding the Best Science Workshop For Your Child

Finding the Best Science Workshop For Your Child

When trying to find the best science workshop for your child, there are many factors to consider. Given the importance of the foundational skills developed by very young children, these factors should be considered thoughtfully. One of the most important things any parent can do is research. Visit the programs and talk to other parents. If your child is in school, obtain recommendations from his or her science teacher. Once you have a list of potential programs, below are some important things to consider when making your visits.

Does the program offer age appropriate activities?

Children at different developmental stages have different levels of comprehension, ability and interest. Does the program offer activities that are appropriate for your child’s stage of development? For very young children, they best learn through play. Use of a water table, sandbox, or musical instruments is very beneficial for them. They are naturally curious at this age and need the opportunity to explore that curiosity. Hands on activities are best and give children the chance to experiment and see how their actions affect their environment.

What kind of training have the teachers been provided?

While it is not necessary to have university training to provide excellent science education opportunities for young children, some type of training is necessary. Teachers need to be taught not only how to work any equipment that may be involved, they also need to know how to engage the children in the activities. Also, their ability to ask open ended questions that give children the chance to make predictions and then to test theories based on those predictions is also critical. It also takes some training in general child development to recognize when a child is being asked to do something beyond their developmental stage. Recognizing those signs of frustration and adapting activities appropriately can prevent a child from becoming overly frustrated and giving up all together. It is also important to find out if teachers have been given training specific to the materials they are using. If they are strictly trying to read the information out of a book or lesson plan or make it up as they go along, this will probably not be the best program for your child.

What kind of equipment and materials are provided and are there enough for all of the children in the program?

Examine all the provided materials and equipment carefully. Make sure it is of high quality, child proof, that there are no broken or missing pieces. Insure there are enough materials for the number of children. Sharing will be necessary for most equipment but there should be plenty of goggles, lab coats, and safety equipment for each child. A good, quality program will make the investment in their equipment and supplies. It is difficult for even the best teacher to teach without necessary supplies.

The most important factor is your child. This should be a fun experience. If they are not having fun, it may be time to look for a new program.

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