Exploring how children use science process skills in a museum setting
Lundgren, Lisa Marie.
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The Florida Museum of Natural History is constructing a new and improved Discovery Room for children. The use of science process skills such as observation, communication, measurement, classification, inference, and prediction had not been studied. In order to ensure scientifically appropriate stations in the new exhibit, research into how children use these skills was conducted in the existing Discovery Room. Children were observed and timed during their visit. Guardians of the children were interviewed or surveyed after the visit was completed. Analysis indicated that dynamic stations, such as the Wind Tunnel, enticed children more than static stations, like a wall-sized Memory Game. In order to ensure success in the Discovery Room that will be constructed in 2015, the Discovery Room should feature dynamic stations that engage science process skills such as prediction and inference.