Author Archives: Peggy Ashbrook

Week of the Young Child from NAEYC, April 24-28






How will your early childhood program celebrate the National Association for the Education of Young Children’s (NAEYC) annual “Week of the Young Child?” Explorations that relate to all five daily themes offer many opportunities to connect young children to science and engineering concepts, using math and technology to build their understandings in a science inquiry investigating a […]

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When early childhood educators conference & talk about science education






The National Science Teachers Association’s annual conference brings educators from many places in the world together to build their science teaching skills, science content, reaffirm connections with colleagues and make new connections. Arriving in LA, the lights and action were a striking contrast to the vibrant rainbow began my week but this change in environment […]

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The Early Childhood STEM Institute






Guest blogger Cindy Hoisington is a Senior Curriculum/Instructional Design Associate with Education Development Center. Hoisington believes that authentic, cognitively challenging science experiences can be transformative for young children. She brings to her work more than 20 years of experience teaching young children, developing educational materials, and instructing and mentoring early childhood teachers in language, literacy, […]

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Experiencing nature–educators make it happen for children and other teachers






Nature play and exploration varies in early childhood (broadly: infant to grade 3) programs and are subject to the local and state licensing regulations, a program’s choice of curriculum, the local environment and weather, and the support of the administration. A conference is an effective way to get a lot of science content knowledge about […]

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Building with blocks, building skills and memories






I still have the wooden unit blocks that were central to many of my childhood play scenarios. The wooden blocks did not stick or snap together so we had to consider balance and how to make a sturdy base to support our structures. They were the materials we used to make models—building beds and shelter […]

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Maple trees and squirrels: a relationship






The Silver maple tree is flowering, early for the season in my region, but right on schedule for the way the season is unfolding this year. Although the flowers are tiny, the details can be seen with a magnifier. When children’s attention is drawn to the small happenings in nature, it contributes to their framework […]

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Big learning from short observations of birds: February 17-20, 2017






Walk outside with your children, watch and count birds for 15 minutes while recording the names of those you know, and report your bird count to be part of a world-wide citizen-science project to collect data on wild birds, creating an annual snapshot of the distribution and abundance of birds. On any or all of these four […]

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An ECSTEM conference experience






An early childhood education conference is an opportunity to meet others who share a passion for improving our science teaching practice, meet our education mentors and gain new insights into why certain educational practices are effective. It’s a privilege to be able to attend, and fun to experience. It’s also a time to hear about […]

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Weather watching and phenology support using evidence to state a claim






Noticing changes in the growth and habit of plants is part of the science of phenology. We do this casually when we comment on the buds swelling on the maple tree (yay! not as many branches are dead as I feared) or the daffodil leaves sprouting above the soil ( yay! they survived the winter). […]

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A love note to education conferences






In my suitcase I have a collapsible jug, tube, funnel, glitter, pebbles, foam hearts, sea shells, and empty plastic bottles—all part of the materials I need for a presentation at the 2017 ECSTEM conference (February 3-4), organized by The Children’s Center at Caltech, in collaboration with THINK Together. An education conference is a joyful place […]

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