STEM in Pre-school, one experience in a school of Portugal
We know that the use of technology have an impact on society, education and consequently in pre-school education. The internet, computers and mobile devices, particularly tablets and smartphones, achieved a huge popularity in recent years due to its great versatility and multifunctionality increasingly being used naturally in the day to day of any individual and especially adolescents. In this context, the inclusion of technology continues to happen naturally in all situations and locations and especially in schools and in the classroom. Children grow up in a digital world being exposed from an age increasingly early to technologies(Lepicnik & Samec, 2013).
In Portugal, it is the pre-school education sector where the presence of technology has felt most difficult to install. The main factors that justify this situation is the lack of technological resources in the classrooms and a lack of training of some of the teachers who expressed some reluctance about the real benefits of its introduction this level of education.
Knowing that the pre-school education is the basis of education, it must promote an rich and stimulating context that arouses curiosity in children and desire to learn. This learning must come from activities where children participate actively, exploring, discovering itself, building your own knowledge.
Going in accordance with what is provided in the Curriculum Guidelines and Performance Specific Profile of pre-school teachers from the Ministry of Education of Portugal, we build the project “The Joy of Learning with Technology and Science in Pre-school” in partnership with Fundação Ilídio Pinho, the Robotics Club KidsRobots, the project Erasmus + “Mindstorm to Brainstorm” and EB1 António Vitorino in Portugal.
This project has as main goals:
- promote interest in STEM;
- improve the coordination and transition between different school cycles;
- promote collaborative work;
- solve problems;
- initiate students into programming activities;
- introduce students to financial education;
- explore entrepreneurship situations.
This project sought to use science and technology to create new and differentiated learning situations in the rooms of pre-school while broke routines and promoted professional development and sharing practices among educators and teachers involved in promoting collaborative work between different levels of education.
The activities were streamlined with children 4 and 5 years old in pre-school Fonte Santa. They always had the collaboration of students from the 4 grade that moved with the teacher to the school garden and where streamlined activities with the use of computers, tablets and the Bee-Bot robot.
During the activities children perform in a playful way repeated counts and had to create instructions and think and use terms like close, before, left, right, forward, wait, run to create sequences.
The created learning moments were favorable to develop ideas and concepts that appear in relevant for future learning of reading and writing and mathematical concepts in the next cycle.
The extra presence of the a primary school teacher and the students of the 1st cycle in classroom space functioned as something more that transformed the traditional classroom in times of innovation, interaction and participation among stakeholders. According to Moratori (2003) although the activities have a playful aspect was always a pedagogical objective and well-defined learning.
José Soares, Scientix Deputy Ambassador
Decreto-Lei n.º 241/2001, de 30 de Agosto http://www.dge.mec.pt/sites/default/files/Basico/dl241_01.pdf
Lepicnik, J., & Samec, P. (2013). Uso de tecnologías en el entorno familiar en niños de cuatro años de Eslovenia. Comunicar, 40, 119- 126. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3916/C40-2013-03-02
Moratori, Patrick Barbosa. Por Que Utilizar Jogos Educativos no Processo de Ensino Aprendizagem? UFRJ. Rio de Janeiro, 2003. em http://www.nce.ufrj.br/ginape/publicacoes/trabalhos/PatrickMaterial/TrabfinalPatrick2003.pdf.
Orientações Curriculares para a Educação Pré-Escolar, Ministério da Educação, Departamento da Educação Básica, 1997 http://www.dge.mec.pt/sites/default/files/Basico/orientacoes_curriculares_pre_escolar.pdf
Article written by: José Soares, Scientix Deputy Ambassador
Tags: code, problem solving, STEM