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First Grade Science and Health

What Kids Should Learn in Science
Exploration of the natural world continues to be an important area of study. The teacher fosters curiosity and imparts the tools of inquiry, so that children readily ask, "Why is that?" "How does that happen?" "What if...?" Children learn to focus their inquiries within a subject. The investigation of insects, for example, might involve examining their characteristics, observing their activities, learning to recognize different varieties, and noting differences and similarities; another common and fully engaging activity is following the stages of a butterfly's development. (Plants and animals are always interesting because they are living things and because children can see plants and animals in the world around them.) A more abstract focus of investigation might be weather, including the seasons, cloud structures, the sun and the moon, and temperature. The study of magnets allows children to develop techniques of experimentation.

What Kids Should Learn in Health
Children continue to learn about their bodies -- for example, "What happens when I lose my teeth?" They also participate in and enjoy a variety of physical activities; learn how to describe pain and symptoms of illness; continue to gain understanding of nutrition and the importance of promoting health; learn about drugs and their effects; learn something about the sources of food; examine safety rules -- for the playground, automobiles, and the street as well as fire safety rules -- and learn something about the purpose of each rule; meet professional health workers; study growth and development by graphing their own growth and by observing the growth of plants and animals; observe babies and young children; meet with older people.

Reprinted from 101 Educational Conversations with Your Kindergartner -- 1st Grader by Vito Perrone, published byChelsea House Publishers
Copyright 1994 by Chelsea House Publishers, a division of Main Line Book Co. All rights reserved.

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