Nature’s Role in Young Children’s Everyday Science Learning
A Case Study
Keywords:informal science learning, nature-based learning, young children, emergent science, parents as educators
To help address the lack of research in early science learning, this exploratory case study investigated a 7-year-old girl’s conceptions of what counts as science in an everyday context. Abigail’s view of science was fuelled by discovering interesting things during daily mundane activities. Her mom supported learning with a “sense-making” approach as an alternative to “correcting” Abigail’s underdeveloped ideas. Interestingly, nature afforded many science learning opportunities that were often a result of the changing natural environment. Results from this study suggest ways to begin dismantling narrow ideas of science in which textbooks and teachers are the authority.