Independent Inquiries vs. Science Table

Inquiry space on nest building

On The Ontario Kindergarten Teachers Facebook page someone asked for some ideas as to what they could put on a Science table. This was the answer I gave:

Our EY team co-constructs several inquiry tables with children on different topics based on student interest (i.e. weather, plants, worms in worm hotels, etc.). These inquiry tables are student-led and can be done independently. The environment will include books, visuals, pics, co-constructed vocabulary, clipboards, iPads, open-ended questions posted on the wall, documentation of learning, and any kind of hands-on “stuff” we can drum up. Our EY team will often be found at one of these spaces documenting kinder learning, but we do not have to be present for this centre to function. As the environment is the third teacher the learning will go one without us being there. However, we have found that science experiments are a great table activities with adult support (i.e. kinder team, EA, parent volunteer, older student) during Play-Based Learning times. Something we just started is a: “What do you want to learn about?” board. Children add new ideas in words and pics about their interests and then we co-construct a new learning environment to support their exploration process.

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