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ERIC Number: EJ932281
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 4
ISSN: ISSN-0269-2465
"Ikiruchikara" and the Japanese Zest for Science
Rogers, Jenny
Primary Science Review, n93 p26-29 May-Jun 2006
The national curriculum in Japan is termed the Course of Study, the revised version of which was implemented in 2000 for kindergarten, or nursery schools, and since 2002 for elementary or primary schools. The Course of Study for Science specifies content only in broad terms, placing the greatest emphasis on process, learning to learn and children's metacognition. Practical materials provide the focus for lessons as a stimulus for children's "intrigue", to be followed by teachers' skillful use of dialogue to get the children thinking and puzzling, ready to explore. A research team from the University of Leicester is engaged in the Japanese DIAL project, investigating Dialogue in Innovation, Achievement and Learning. The project was launched in 2004 in collaboration with the Women's University of Nara in the prefectures of Nara and Osaka in southern Japan. The research team has since spent time in 15 kindergarten and elementary schools in town, urban and rural areas and has observed and filmed a range of science lessons across the age groups. A central theme throughout is for educators to generate in children a "zest for life" ("Ikiruchikara") or joy of living. It embraces the overall philosophy and pedagogy of all elementary schools and is particularly well implemented in this area of Japan. The author illustrates how children's questions drive the learning in Japanese elementary schools. (Contains 3 figures.)
Association for Science Education. College Lane Hatfield, Herts, AL10 9AA, UK. Tel: +44-1-707-283000; Fax: +44-1-707-266532; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Early Childhood Education; Elementary Education; Kindergarten
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Japan