Dr Teo Tang Wee Delivers Keynote on Early Childhood Science Education at the International Forum of Early Childhood Teacher Education in Hangzhou, China
Friday, 06 July 2018
Dr Teo Tang Wee
Dr Teo Tang Wee, Assistant Professor at NIE’s Natural Sciences & Science Education Academic Group, delivered a keynote at the Zhejiang Normal University in Hangzhou, China on 2 June 2018 at the International Forum of Early Childhood Teacher Education which was held from 2 – 3 June 2018.
The keynote titled “Science in the Early and Informal Science School Years” was delivered in both English and Mandarin. The presentation focused on her inaugural science research study “Children are Natural Scientists: Learning Science in Early Childhood and Early Primary Years” about K-2 children in Singapore, which was motivated by questions such as:
- What science conceptions do preschoolers have?
- What pedagogies are appropriate for science teaching in the early years?
- What are some affordances of play-based pedagogies for these children?
During her presentation, Dr Teo discussed that while Singaporean children are known to perform excellently in international science benchmark assessments such as TIMSS and PISA, formal science education begins only at Grade 3 (age 9). At the kindergarten level, science is embodied within the curriculum that addresses the learning area on the Discovery of the World. After the preschool years, children pick up science again two years later. She described the research project and offered insights into the above questions with the goal to inform science curriculum making in the early years for Singapore Teachers and beyond.