Educational Interventions to Advance Children’s Scientific Thinking

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Science  19 Aug 2011:
Vol. 333, Issue 6045, pp. 971-975
DOI: 10.1126/science.1204528

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The goal of science education interventions is to nurture, enrich, and sustain children’s natural and spontaneous interest in scientific knowledge and procedures. We present taxonomy for classifying different types of research on scientific thinking from the perspective of cognitive development and associated attempts to teach science. We summarize the literature on the early—unschooled—development of scientific thinking, and then focus on recent research on how best to teach science to children from preschool to middle school. We summarize some of the current disagreements in the field of science education and offer some suggestions on ways to continue to advance the science of science instruction.

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