Research

Pedagogical Practice and Curriculum Content

New Zealand Research:

A Sense of Wonder, arising from Aesthetic Experiences, should be the Starting Point for Inquiry in Primary Science
Ian Milne (2010)
Discusses the need to utilise children’s natural awe and wonder for their environment to stimulate enthusiasm for science and introduces the importance of feelings and emotions that set the scene for exploring the role that “wonder” can play in primary science education.

Thinking About the Nature of Science?
Warren Bruce & Chris Astall (2010)
A brief discussion of what the Nature of Science strand means and the use of Science Postcards in teaching this strand of the NZ curriculum

Science Education a Vehicle for the Key Competencies in Praxis
Steve Sexton (2010)
Discusses Science Education as a way to create meaningful and authentic learning situations where students can demonstrate and develop the key competencies of thinking,
relating to others, using symbols, languages and text, managing self and participating and contributing.

Science in Years 5 to 8: Capable and Competent Teaching.
ERO (2010)
Discussion and analysis of what makes good quality Science teaching in the middle years.

Creative Exploration – Doing science in a primary school context
Ian Milne (2008)
A discussion of the reasoning behind Creative Exploration, a co-constructivist teaching and learning approach for primary science.

Putting the Nature of Science Strand into the Water Cycle

Chris Joyce, Ally Bull, Rosemary Hipkins and Bill MacIntyre (2008)
Research carried out to inform ARB and NZCER resource development.

Seeing yourself in science – The importance of the middle school years.
Royal Society (2008)
Evidence linked to the hypothesis that Years 7 and 8 are a crucial time, when attitudes to ongoing science learning are likely to consolidate, impacting on choices made in later years.

Curriculum Changes, Priorities and Issues
Findings from the NZCER secondary 2006 and primary 2007 national surveys
Indicates a low priority toward science in many Primary Schools.

NEMP Science
(2007)
Raises concerns about student attitudes and the frequency of science programmes in Primary Schools.

Overseas Research:

Cultivating Little Scientists from the Age of Two: A summary of a research project about scientific exploration within daycare centres in Amsterdam. (British Psychological Society)

Starting out in Science: The problems we are facing in New Zealand Primary Science are also happening in the UK.  An interesting read.

Learning to Love Science – Harnessing Children’s Scientific Imagination: Exploring the reasons for children’s switching off science and ways to reharness their enthusiasm.