Young Alchemists – Science for Babies, Toddlers and Kids
By Angelique Felix
Young children are always experimenting! If you give your child a cup and a bowl of water, he will fill and pour, push the cup under the surface and watch the water rush in, and investigate why his sleeves get wet when he dips them in.
New theoretical ideas and empirical research show that very young children’s learning and thinking are strikingly similar to learning and thinking in science. (source)
I say that almost all young kids have the fundamental skills of becoming a good scientist!
They are CURIOUS.
They want to DISCOVER new things.
They want to know WHY certain things happen.
Every age contributes in its own way of becoming young alchemists.
Explore & Play
During the Baby age (0 to 1) a child explores & plays with what is suitable for its age (click here to see how babies can play). Babies learn about the world through their senses and use their whole body for that investagation. On the picture you see baby girl explore a homemade babypaint (cornstarch, water, food colors).
Do it yourself & observe
When baby grows up to toddler (1 to 3) and preschooler (4 to 6) it will be attracted to do things theirselves with the material being offered. While creating, mixing, making “mess”, they observe and might want to ask you ‘why does this happen’? The picture shows one of my super curious preschoolers making playdough out of flour-water and salt.
Thinking logically & Understand
Getting bigger and being more able to reorganize information a child (6+) shows you that it is ready to use logic and to understand certain processes that are happening. On the picture my daughter pretends to be a witch creating her magical potion. We’ve put out several ingredients and she followed precisely the effects of adding each ingredient separately.
So if we adults stimulate these innate natural abilities, our kids later on will be attracted automatically towards science and technology. What a great new future can lie ahead for the world of tomorrow simply by motivating children to develop their alchemists skills!
Have a look at the video. It’s a compilation of science moments with the kids I work with.
Angelique Felix is the creator of AngeliqueFelix.com -The Magic Of Play . She’ s on a mission to bring play back in daily lives through bilingual songs, movement & creativity. Angelique teaches 0 to 6 year-olds in Italy, but comes from the Netherlands. She is a single mom passionately loving her only daughter Chanel every day. And she thinks it’s strange to write about herself in the third person 🙂