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Browsing by Author "Aallonpää-Ekrias, Niina"

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  • Aallonpää-Ekrias, Niina (2018)
    Ministry of Education and Culture in Finland has issued that Finland should be the leading country in the world in science education by the year 2020. The aim of this study was to research how early childhood science education is presented in the curriculums of Finland and Sweden and what targets it is given. Science education includes every aspect of science but it usually means natural sciences. In this study early childhood science education is defined to include only chemistry and physichs and also mathematics. These three have some basic terms in common and children can learn them simultaneously. The Finnish and Swedish curriculums of pre-school are the materials of this study. The Finnish curriculum is from the year 2014. The Swedish curriculum is part of the curriculum of comprehensive school. It has been revised in 2016. In Sweden there is also an extended part for the pre-school which was taken into account in this study. The method of this study was content analysis. Use of the basic science study terminology in the curriculums was also analysed. Science education as such is not mentioned in either curriculum. Basic terms were covered in both curriculums in different situations. The use of the terms were broarder in Sweden but the terms were used more often in Finland. The Swedish curriculum sets targets for the basic terms and gives examples for teachers how to teach science and all three aspects (mathematics, physichs and chemistry) were mentioned. In the Finnish curriculum the basic terms were included in mathematics whereas neither chemistry nor physichs were acknowledged. In Finland practicing of observation was emphasized and it was considered as the foundation of learning to research. Pre-school teacher in Sweden is given more precise targets for early science education than Finnish teacher. The Finnish curriculum gives teachers more freedom to organize early childhood science education.