Encouraging Early Science Skills
RIELDS Focusing on 2 and 3 Year Olds by Rachel Schilke
Scientific Inquiry, Application and Knowledge of Science Concepts
Toddlers begin to understand and explore scientific topics around them. These topics include living things such as butterflies, insects and pets. They may discover the varying textures of the world around them such as how dirt and stones feel differently. Temperature awareness and expressing feelings of cold and warmth are also science skills.
Inquiry in Play
Parents can encourage the development of inquiry skills by asking questions such as "What do you think will happen when you add another block to the tower?" or "How could you use your blanket to help you carry your toys?".
Frequent outdoor play, both at home and at preschool or day care, helps encourage children's understanding of the nature around them. Nature walks are another way to introduce children to different animals, plants and natural resources.
Science exploration can be exciting and fun for children. A walk outside on a rainy day can lead to discovery about weather and their senses. Guiding questions such as "how do you feel?" and "what do you see?" help promote scientific thinking.