Recognise the importance and roles of varied forms of representation

The research carried out in Creative Little Scientists indicates that the role of varied forms of representation in learning could be more widely recognised. There are important roles for expression and recording in different modes in encouraging reflection and evaluation of ideas, strategies and learning and providing a basis for discussion and dialogue with others.

These may take many forms: children’s talk, gestures, drawing, their writing and text-making questioning assumptions, redefining problems and considering what else might be possible, and may involve the use of digital technologies. Children’s creativity is revealed through these means as well as their understandings. In whatever form children have expressed their ideas, the teacher, in focusing the young learners’ attention on how they think about something, fosters the child’s meta-cognitive awareness, helping them to make the implicit more explicit. While there were examples of children’s employment of diverse forms of expression across the episodes, this was another factor where partners suggested that the range of approaches might be extended, in particular to incorporate children’s greater use of ICT. Fieldwork indicated the value of dialogue with children about their recordings, and the potential of representation and expression, not just for recording outcomes, but for fostering reflection and reasoning processes.

Fani Stylianidou

Ellinogermaniki Agogi, Greece

Creative Little Scientists, www.creative-little-scientists.eu