Ready, Set... Explore!

Written by | Feb 13, 2012 6:31 PM

Science is about trying to make sense of the world. The idea of explaining science to young children can feel overwhelming to many adults. But luckily, explanations about science aren’t what young children want at first. They want to play! Curiosity drives children’s interest in science and we can all appreciate curiosity. So where do we start?

witf and Whitaker Center For Science and the Arts invite you and your 3-7 year old to join us for Ready, Set…Explore, a series of Saturday morning science play dates where you and your child can spend time together and play with science. Each event is shaped around a science concept and a well-loved PBS character who will be at the event to explore along with you. All events are held in the beautiful Kunkel Gallery in Whitaker Center in Harrisburg specific Saturdays from 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM. The events are free for families thanks to some wonderful community partners. Just RSVP by clicking the link below.

Upcoming Ready, Set…Explore dates:

tv george standing 

April 21, 9-11 AM-- Explore wind and weather with Curious George

This Ready, Set…Explore event was really fun and very successful.  We had 286 people there and heard nothing but positive comments from families, Whitaker Center, PNC (our sponsor), and our awesome volunteers. 

Curious George event is sponsored by:
PNCGrow 600

May 19, 9-11 AM—Go on a backyard adventure with Cat In The Hat
RSVP for the May event - click here

  • Explore spider webs
  • Learn about worms
  • Make some tracks
  • Get your photo taken with the Cat In The Hat (bring a camera!)
  • and much more!
Cat In The Hat event is sponsored by:
m  t bank logo600

Get ready to ask questions and explore science with your child!

Other tips from PBS Parents:

Science is not simply about knowing information—it is equally a way of trying to make sense of the world. Scientists must ask questions, design investigations, try to make sense of the information they have gathered during the investigations, and communicate and defend their thinking to others. They don’t always find the answers to their questions, and they don’t always agree.

Help Children Think Like Scientists

It is much more important for parents to help children develop the skills they need to think like scientists than to help them understand complex scientific concepts. Even the youngest children are quite capable of beginning to build these skills. Here are a few pointers to keep in mind as you enjoy science alongside your child:

  • You don’t need to have answers for all of your child’s questions! Encourage your child to develop his own science thinking skills.
  • Listen carefully to your child. Engage her in conversation about what she thinks, and encourage her to explain why she thinks as she does by asking questions such as, “Why do you think the snail is eating that leaf?”
  • Don’t immediately correct your child. If your child says something scientifically incorrect, help her discover for herself what is correct rather than correcting her. For example, if she says “heavy things sink, you can ask her, “Which heavy things have you seen sink?” Or, “I wonder if we can find something heavy that can float?”
  • Model curiosity. Wonder aloud: “I wonder what will happen to this pudding mix when we put the water in?”

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