EDC Leads Smithsonian Early Science Learning Forum

Smithsonian Institute photo

EDC staff led the first in a series of Early Childhood Science Education Research Forums sponsored by the Smithsonian’s new Early Learning Collaborative Network, which is working to identify effective ways to promote informal early science learning, widely share best practices, and support early learning research. On June 20, 2012 in Washington, DC, Nancy Clark-Chiarelli, Cindy Hoisington, and Jeff Winokur along with Holly Harrick of the Connecticut Science Center keynoted the forum and presented workshops in the afternoon.

At the forum, Anne Caspari, Early Childhood Education Specialist at the National Air and Space Museum, said: “We are really excited to bring the researchers here from Education Development Center. Their research is the basis of a program developed here in science and pre-K.... These researchers are doing important work in assessing science literacy in young children and looking at how we can support science literacy.”

A few years ago, EDC consulted with the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum staff as it drew on EDC's Young Scientist Series to design early science professional development for Washington, DC, pre-K teachers. This spring, Collaborative leaders invited EDC back to Washington to share its Foundations of Science Literacy research and new work with the Connecticut Science Center.

At the forum, Winokur and Hoisington hosted workshops on teaching strategies and approaches in the Foundations of Science Literacy course.

“What was really exciting about presenting at the Smithsonian was the idea of bridging the gap between formal and informal science," Hoisington said. "We know how much they mutually reinforce kids’ learning, but a lot of times the importance of the informal piece goes unrecognized."

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Last Updated: June 2012