About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 2-6
Publication year: 2012
ISBN: 978-84-695-3491-5
ISSN: 2340-1117

Conference name: 4th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 2-4 July, 2012
Location: Barcelona, Spain

INVESTIGATIONS AND INQUIRY-BASED LEARNING IN THE CURRICULUMS OF PRESCHOOL EDUCATION

A. Michalopoulou

University of Thessaly (GREECE)
The majority of educational theories relating to learning that underpin western education systems are grounded in the belief that humans learn best when they are engaged and actively constructing meaning. New learning engages teachers in interrogations about curriculum, pedagogies and the design of learning activities that enable them to be implemented in more relevant and dynamic ways to deepen understandings and transform the communication of ideas and knowledge.
The spontaneity and flexibility of teachers in being able to adapt to and respond to the unexpected and unplanned is viewed as an important pedagogical skill and disposition. Emergent curriculum is complementary to the project approach, but differs in its emphasis on deriving curriculum from sources that are relevant and meaningful to young children and their context. The specific structures and techniques of the Project Approach, which focus on in-depth projects and an inquiry orientation, can be applied, but the emergent curriculum also acknowledges everyday social activity, play, and other isolated classroom experiences that may not be conceptualized as forming specific projects or investigations.
There is a consensus among those who focus on science education at the preschool level that it should involve extended investigation within a domain, that it should be hands-on, and that children should be encouraged to ask questions, seek answers, make careful observations, document their findings, and use those findings as the basis for further investigations.
In this paper we examine the preschool curriculums of different countries and we try to find if they can be characterized as emergents, if they focus on the project approach, if they involve extended investigations in different domains, if they emphasize on inquiry-based learning.
Kindergarten curriculums can capitalize on children’s natural curiosity and their desire to make sense of their environment. However, curiosity on its own is not enough. The guidance of a the preschool teacher is essential to enable children to learn through inquiry.
Many different skills make up inquiry-based learning for children, and children need many opportunities to develop and use these skills as they progress through the Kindergarten years.
Inquiry skills should not be taught in isolation, but integrated into interesting topics and ideas. Taking into consideration the strengths, needs, and interests of the children in the class, the teacher should model the inquiry process and pose questions that encourage, support and extend the children’s learn
@InProceedings{MICHALOPOULOU2012INV,
author = {Michalopoulou, A.},
title = {INVESTIGATIONS AND INQUIRY-BASED LEARNING IN THE CURRICULUMS OF PRESCHOOL EDUCATION},
series = {4th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN12 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-695-3491-5},
issn = {2340-1117},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona, Spain},
month = {2-4 July, 2012},
year = {2012},
pages = {2-6}}
TY - CONF
AU - A. Michalopoulou
TI - INVESTIGATIONS AND INQUIRY-BASED LEARNING IN THE CURRICULUMS OF PRESCHOOL EDUCATION
SN - 978-84-695-3491-5/2340-1117
PY - 2012
Y1 - 2-4 July, 2012
CI - Barcelona, Spain
JO - 4th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN12 Proceedings
SP - 2
EP - 6
ER -
A. Michalopoulou (2012) INVESTIGATIONS AND INQUIRY-BASED LEARNING IN THE CURRICULUMS OF PRESCHOOL EDUCATION, EDULEARN12 Proceedings, pp. 2-6.
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