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ERIC Number: EJ1168277
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1554-480X
An Investigation of Singapore Preschool Children's Emerging Concepts of Floating and Sinking
Teo, Tang Wee; Yan, Yaw Kai; Ong, Woei Ling Monica
Pedagogies: An International Journal, v12 n4 p325-339 2017
Despite Singapore's excellent science achievements in international benchmark tests such as the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) and Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), little is known about Singaporean children's (aged 4-8) emerging science conceptions as formal science schooling begins at Grade 3 (aged 9). This paper builds on the well-established literature on preschool children's emerging conceptions and play to illuminate children's ideas about floating and sinking. Using narratives of a 90-minute activity involving a group of Singaporean children aged 6, we surfaced emerging conceptions that an object floats or sinks due to its weight, and that objects sink because water is "soft"--a conception that has not been reported in previous literature. We also observed a shift from binary discourse about floating and sinking to more graded descriptions (e.g. "sink a bit") as the children played more. The play-based activity provided opportunities for the children's emerging conceptions to be elicited because it was conceptually-oriented and created opportunities for social interactions. It allowed children who were not proficient in standard English to express their thinking in actions. In sum, this paper illustrates how play-based contexts could be used to identify children's emerging conceptions.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Singapore
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A