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Earth and Space Science

Teaching science to children

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Marved Altamirano Marved Altamirano 410 Points

Hi, i am a junior in FIU majoring in Elementary education and i was wondering if there are any recommendations anyone could suggest on how to engage students when introducing a new topic or starting a new chapter? As well as how to get them excited about learning of this new topic. For example: a lesson on the 3 states of matter.

Pamela Dupre Pamela Dupre 92369 Points

I love to start with phenomena! That means you use an event, a short video clip, a quick demonstration, and you don't tell them what your objective will be. Look up phenomena by using the Explore All Resources button. You can refine your search as needed. 

You could use something like this; the trailer is about 3 minutes in length. You can tie it to the states of matter, environmental science, life science, the food chain, the properties/attributes of solids, etc.


“Albatross” is a film about the harmful effects of marine debris on albatrosses inhabiting the tiny
Midway Atoll, famous for its role in one of World War II’s most important battles. Edited over two
years from hundreds of hours of film by filmmaker Chris Jordan, Albatross will be made available for
free streaming on World Oceans Day, June 8.

The school year will end before this debuts. If this doesn't move us to action, what will???

Megan Doty Megan Doty 11847 Points

Hi Marved,

I would recommend this web seminar archive titled: 'How Do I Select Phenomena to Motivate Student Sense Making?' to help with finding and selecting phenomena as a means to engage your students. You can find it at the link below:

I hope this helps! Please let me know if you have any other topics I can help you locate here in the Learning Center!


Lizzet Alvarez Lizzet Alvarez 185 Points

The way I introduced the 3 states of matter to my transitional kindergarten class is by having students physically move and pretend to be a solid, liquid, and gas. Allowing students to move around and pretend to be the three different states of matter seems to work well as engaging first approach. For example, for a solid we all squished next to each other, for a liquid we gave each other arm space in between, and lastly, for a gas we spread all over the classroom. This is how I first introduce the 3 states of matter to help engage my students into our unit. After they have been engaged we began our discussions and continue to build onto our unit. Hope this helps and provides you with a few ideas. 

Katherine Gonzalez Katherine Gonzalez 145 Points

When teaching Science, I always like to make a personal connection with the students. Since science exists all around us, they will get a better understanding of the topic when they are making that personal connection. Hands on activities work well. Many students get bored when they are sitting down listening to a lecture. They most likely will not pay attention and will get distracted easily, but when you have them doing a project or even a simple activity, they will be able to learn more. 

With the 3 states of matter, you can provide real life items that are liquid, solid, or gas. 

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