The Elementary Science & Everyday Thinking (ESET) activities are a collection of lessons that accompany the Physics & Everyday Thinking (PET) curriculum but are appropriate for use in K-5 classrooms. Many of the activities in this collection are featured in the Learning about Learning activities of PET. The ESET activities cover many of the same content objectives as the PET activities but at a level appropriate for young learners. They also follow the same pedagogical format as PET in that they begin with activities or discussions designed to elicit students’ initial ideas and are followed by collecting and interpreting physical evidence and finally a consensus discussion.
The ESET activities can be used by instructors of PET in multiple ways. Instructors who have practicing teachers in their course may wish to have their students implement ESET activities in their own classrooms. Such an experience would allow teachers to immediately apply what they’re learning in PET to their classroom context, helping them to see the value of what they’re learning and helping them understand that young learners can construct sophisticated scientific ideas. Alternatively, PET instructors may wish to have teachers compare the elementary activities to the activities they engaged in to consider how lessons may be transformed to meet the needs of younger learners.
The elementary teachers in PET courses will appreciate a resource such as ESET. The lessons are written so that they can implement them immediately in their classroom.