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Taking science education across the world

Our future depends on exploring all the frontiers of science, on innovative technologies based on these explorations and on the development of scientific literacy in all peoples through science education.

Early Years Science : Sowing seeds and scarecrows

Its become part of a tradition in Settle, Yorkshire for the children in the nursery and reception classes at Settle Primary School to make winter visits to the Play Barn, a children’s soft play centre and activity hub in the town, for cross curricular activities.

Following the writing of the cross curricular Hot Topics series  I devised a science session based on a farm, as we are in the Play Barn, and on growing plants, as we are coming out of winter.

Through a model farmyard the children are introduced to the animals and asked to sound like them.

Using a model farm yard

We discuss plants grown on farms, focus on how plants grow from seeds and set up pots of broad beans.

Planting pots of broad beans

We finish with a story I wrote called ‘One for the Rooks and One for the crows’ based on a phrase used by farm labourers sowing seeds in the time before mechanization. In this rhyme the children flap their arms (wings), make a beak of one hand and peck the ground. I eventually dress up as a scare crow which saves the seeds and lets the crop grow.

Dressed as a scarecrow!

This is followed up back in class with the children making observations on the germination of the bean seeds, the pots are transparent and the growth of the plants. The children can take photographs of their plants as they grow and by the summer they will find the plants have made seeds of their own thus completing the plant’s life cycle.

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