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Port Discovery Children’s Museum Sarah Zimmerman STEM and Education Specialist portdiscovery.org

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Presentation on theme: "Port Discovery Children’s Museum Sarah Zimmerman STEM and Education Specialist portdiscovery.org"— Presentation transcript:

1 Port Discovery Children’s Museum Sarah Zimmerman STEM and Education Specialist portdiscovery.org

2 Our Mission To connect purposeful play with learning

3 Port Discovery’s approach to STEM with Early Learners Three Goals I like STEM I can do STEM STEM is FUN!

4 Why Early STEM Learning is Important Exposure- give early learners a head start for later in school Positive experiences- young children become excited about learning more STEM in the future.

5 Science as Inquiry “Children need to practice the process skills of science so that they learn to ask questions about the world and then study the world in special ways to find answers, just like scientists do.” The Vermont Center for the Book

6 Nano at Port Discovery

7 How does Port Discovery make Nanoscience accessible for Early Learners? Providing multiple entry points to the exhibit Facilitated activities within the exhibit Methods of engagement in nanoseries program, “Nanoscience Exposed” –Books –Theater –Crafts –Adaptation of experiments

8 Providing Multiple Entry Points Learning about size, seriation, measurement, and tools

9 Facilitated Activities within the Exhibit Exploration Station Pop Up Science

10 Port Discovery’s “Nanoscience Exposed” Series Program Developed originally for a parent-child five session series Program based on the book “Alice in Nanoland” by Horton and Long –Outlines the “rules” of nanoland Became after school, summer camp, and “Museum on the Road TM ” program

11 Using Books

12 Using Theater

13 Using Crafts

14 Adaptations Made for Judy Center In all previous models of Port Discovery’s nano series program, the target age range included 1 st through 5 th grades. Baltimore County’s Judy Center asked if we could provide programming for their Science Summer Camp for children entering Kindergarten. Very few modifications were made to the program for these youngest students –They participated in all of the experiments and activities including extracting strawberry DNA –All of the basic concepts were taught –Vocabulary, depth of explanation, and length of discussions were modified for this age range (average 5 years old)

15 Steps for modifying an experiment for Early Learners 1. Choose an experiment that might be designed for higher level learners. 2. Evaluate if they will physically be capable of performing the experiment (do they have the fine motor skills) 3. Determine what you want them to get out the experiment. (What content to you want them to learn?) 4. Think, how can you explain this concept in the most basic way? (remember, the goal isn’t to have them remember facts, but to get them excited.) 5. Remember the goals: –Am I exposing them to concepts they will be learning later? –Will this activity provide the students with a positive experience of STEM learning?

16 Feedback The program and lessons were awesome. Some of the content was difficult, but Miss Sarah was able to explain the content in a way that the children remembered and enjoyed the lessons. Maybe there could be this program for afternoon sessions here during the year! The program is very interesting, and engaging for the children, even with such difficult concepts.

17 Evaluation Student Test Results: Small BIG Nano Test Question% correct Q1: Nano is small or big?96% Q2: Circle the body part that is your nanosensor.48% Q3: Circle the picture that is unexpected.52% Q4: Circle the picture that changes color when it is nano.78% Total

18 REMEMBER! I like STEM I can do STEM STEM is FUN!


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