Preschool Education in Applied Sciences (PEAS) Teaching Guide

PEAS Teaching Guide
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The PEAS Teaching Guide introduces the PEAS Practices, provides model science learning activities featuring healthy foods, and provides content-specific background information related to featured life science topics. Each of these features of the guide was designed to serve as a framework for teachers as they learn how to design engaging, hands-on science learning activities!

For more specifics about the guide, see below:

The PEAS Teaching Guide will teach teachers “how” to teach develop scientific understanding and develop language in the context of healthy living using the NGSS’ Practices of Science. While Head Start teachers provide teacher-directed learning activities in the classroom, they are also required to design child-initiated activities. This method requires teachers to develop learning activities based on interest expressed by child(ren) during the school day. Preschool teachers often have low-efficacy for teaching science, and/or believe science is too difficult to teach. Providing teachers with a Teaching Guide from which to design their own science learning experiences will reduce barriers to science learning in the classroom and improve teachers’ ability to design quality integrative, inquiry-based science learning experiences for underrepresented minority children that interests them.

The PEAS Teaching Guide will also feature 3-thematic model units (12 total activities) to serve as a model to teachers on how to effectively design learning activities using the Cycle of Discovery. PEAS model activities will focus on hands-on, inquiry-based science learning experiences for preschool children that positively impact their science knowledge and scientific language, while exposing them to positive early learning experiences in the Life Sciences. Each model unit will include guided hands-on, integrative, inquiry-based learning in the Life Sciences through topic concept maps, engaging activities with simple procedures, and a detailed supply list. Suggested conversation starters that facilitate teacher-child conversation interaction around science concepts will be also included. The PEAS’ unit activities will last approximately 15-20 minutes and will be designed to be implemented through both large group (circle time) and small group learning. Activities will emphasize integration of science concepts with scientific language and NGSS’ Life Science Disciplinary Core Idea through the use of: 1. Prediction Panels to facilitate hypothesis formulation/testing 2. Manipulatives to explore the environment (e.g. measuring tools, magnifying glasses). Introduction of scientific words to facilitate academic language development, science journals to encourage early literacy activities. Sensory explorations to influence exposure, experience and intake to healthy foods.

Resource Contact:
Stage, Virginia C – PhD, RD