Making science accessible to the youngest children

Kids with, or without reading skills, can use the book, prepare, and play with science activities independently. Each activity is also linked to a QR Code with a Youtube video. You can buy the book from Amazon US or at your local Amazon with ASIN: B08NWQZQRB. You can check the full content (PDF) here: https://t.co/ktyNO6YSwq?amp=1

I am a stay at home mum of twins, previously a scientist. I wrote a book for young kids (ages 3–7). The book has simple, graphical instructions on how to set up and play with science activities at home. It allows young children, even without reading skills to decide which science activity they want to explore & to prepare & play with the activities independently. Every science activity is linked to a QR code with an engaging Youtube video. The videos offer further insights into the activities through different types of media. Our science activities use household items only aiming for a low-cost play. The book also includes suggestions on how to extend the activities and kid-friendly scientific explanations. By combining print books, Youtube videos, and parental support, we create a holistic, real-life experience allowing young kids to choose, play, and learn science.

How it all started?

Coming up with ideas for science play was challenging. I had to spend hours researching possible science activities online and in books. I spent a long time shopping for the required items of the activities and testing the activities in advance, to make sure I could replicate them. Sometimes, the activities weren’t easy to replicate at home or they had unclear instructions.

When I finally found an activity I liked and I could replicate, I would spend time to prepare an explanation for the science behind the activity. I wanted to create an explanation that is brief, short, and easy for young kids to understand, and hopefully, remember.

And for the final part, I had to convince my kids to join me and play. And that was the hardest part. It was the hardest part because my kids wanted to make the choice for what we will play. If I suggested something, it would not be as exciting as if they actually chose to play with something. They liked the power that comes with a decision, they liked the feeling of having control over what we will play and what we will learn. And I wanted to encourage them to make those decisions. It would give them great confidence and excitement, and it would give me, a little glimpse of what they most like to play. Plus, developing decision-making skills is a useful skill for adulthood.

But, giving my kids the ability to choose the science activity we would play, meant that I had to preplan and prepare for multiple science activities!

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Book cover!

The book

In our book, there are three colored-coded sections of science activities: paper activities, art activities, and water activities.

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Graphical content page of art activities.

At the beginning of each section, there is a graphical content page with pictures of the available activities in that category. For example, for art activities, we have shaving cream marbled art, bubble art, string art, and milk art. Having a graphical content page, allows the child to make the choice of the desired activity. This encourages young kids to make decisions and motivates them to follow through and play with the activities.

Once the decision is made and the activity is chosen, the child can find the corresponding page (by matching the numbers in the stars) and follow the simple, graphical instructions to set up and play!

Here is an example of the shaving cream marble art activity pages.

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Book pages 16 & 17 present the activity of shaving cream marble art

All activity pages start by listing the required items. The first step is to gather these items with parental support. Then, the child can follow graphical instructions to set up and play with the activities. Playing with my recommended science activities requires minimal parental involvement, promoting independence and self-confidence. To make sure everything is clearly explained, there is brief written instruction at the top of each picture.

Each activity comes also with a QR Code that leads to a Youtube video.

Shaving cream art video!

The video complements the activity and encourages children to use a variety of media, gather information, and achieve their goals.

The next steps

I hope I can make science accessible to the youngest kids of all family backgrounds.

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My kids creating marbled art with shaving cream.

Get the book

If you are outside the US, you can find the book on your local Amazon website with the ASIN : B08NWQZQRB

If you want to see the full content, a PDF version of the book is available here.

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Written by

Scientist, Mum, Video creator, Gamer & Storyteller! I love dogs, long walks & wine!

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