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15. Scientific Practices in Early Childhood and Primary Education
Thursday 24th August Symposia Session III, 09:00 - 11:00

This symposium will examine research with young children that focuses on understanding the ways in which children engage in inquiry-based science investigations. The presenters will explore cases from different classroom contexts in Early Childhood (papers 1, 2 and 3) and Primary (paper 4) education to consider young children’s practices of science. Addressing this aim across contexts allows for gaining an understanding of these locally contextualized, yet globally relevant, research findings. Utilizing qualitative methodological perspectives, the individual papers each have as a central aim understanding how children participate in inquiry-based science investigations about plant growth (1), the eye (2) and water state changes (3 and 4), and the ways in which they talk about their participation and investigations. Paper 1 examines children’s affordances and difficulties, as well as teacher’s role in supporting children’s engagement in scientific practices. Paper 2 and 3 examine in detail contexts that favoured children’s engagement in building explanations and how changes in pre-K children’s explanations take place. Paper 4 draws from semiotic approaches and discusses how understanding inquiry learning experiences can benefit from multimodal analysis. Thus the symposium as a whole will draw across the individual studies to unpack the potential of children’s capacities for engaging in a variety of science practices. The emergence and development of children’s explanations and questions across the studies is a main focus of the presentations, and the role of curiosity and wonder as connected with students’ ideas and questions are focal points for analyses across the studies. Relations between students’ and teachers’ practices will also be addressed, in order to arrive at implications for both teaching as well as learning of science.

Chairperson: Sabela F. Monteira, Universidade de Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Discussant: Sofie Areljung, Umeå University, Sweden

S15.3.1.1 Carrying out biology investigations in early years
Marida Ergazaki*, Vassiliki Zogza
University of Patras, Greece
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S15.3.1.2 How do we see? Light, eyes and brain in early childhood
Beatriz Mazas, Ester Mateo, María José Gil-Quílez, María José Sáez*
Universidad de Zaragoza, Spain
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S15.3.1.3 Building explanations about evaporation in early childhood
Sabela F. Monteira*, María Pilar Jiménez-Aleixandre
Universidade de Santiago de Compostela, Spain
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S15.3.1.4 Multilingual, multimodal interactions in primary school and the role of wonderings
Roberto Gómez Fernández*, Christina Siry, Sara Wilmes
The University of Luxembourg, Luxembourg
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