The Benefits of Hands-On/Minds-On Science Study

Science links directly to our everyday world and provides students with the opportunity to analyse and ask questions about how things work.   Science incorporates many aspects of students’ school curriculum including Language, Mathematics, History, Geography and Technology.

Science study works for children of all ability levels.  The study of science involves concepts that relate to our everyday lives.  As such, students do not need to already be high achievers to take part.  The analytical and critical thinking aspects of science often come from the debates and discussions that students take part in.  Science is the most inclusive subject for students to acquire these important skills through.   Students are able to draw on their general knowledge of the world around them to contribute ideas, draw conclusions and design the experiments to test their existing understanding.  Rather than being hindered by language ability, students studying hands-on science can actually build language skills along with their critical thinking ability in a non-stressful and high interest environment.

What is Hands-On/Minds-On Science?

Hands-On/Minds-On Science is a learning approach that promotes the learning of science through ‘inquiry’, or the doing of science.  Students learn to share their existing ideas about science concepts through discussion and debate.  They further their understanding through research and the opportunity to design experiments that test their ideas or beliefs about a concept.  Through inquiry and testing, students find solutions to the problems and challenges presented in the science that is a part of their everyday lives.

Hands-On/Minds-On Science helps students to develop decision-making skills that contribute to both intellectual and social development.  Learning to think like a scientist helps students to develop the ability to analyse situations and consider a range of alternative solutions – a skill that they will use in all aspects of school and later adult life.

Hands-On/Minds-On Science helps students to learn how to: observe, collect data, analyze, measure, classify, reason, infer, predict and explain– skills used in all areas of study and work life.

Through the process of designing and conducting experiments, students become strong critical thinkers able to identify problems and develop solutions.

Hands-On Scientific Study provides the opportunity for students to strengthen comprehension and communication skills through debate, discussion, informational reading and writing, and the presentation of their ideas and experimental results.

Research shows that in order for students to truly understand science concepts, they must have opportunities to compare their own ideas about how things work with relevant evidence gained from hands-on experiments, discussions and informational reading about the concept.

What Skills Will Students Gain from Participation in the Science Club?

  • Problem Identification and Problem Solving
  • Data Collection and Analysis
  • Effective Observation
  • Inference, Reasoning, Classifying and Prediction
  • Research Know-How
  • Critical Thinking
  • Debate and Discussion
  • Information Reading and Writing
  • Presentation
  • Collaboration
  • Independent Thinking

As students build these skills they become not only great scientists but truly strong students in other areas of school study.  These skills also help them to develop into competent adults able to easily adapt to the changing economy and the world in which they live.  Science skills are lifelong skills!!

What science concepts will students learn at The Junior Genius Science Club?

Students will be working in grade specific groups covering the full four science streams set out by The Ontario Ministry of Education, as well as modules in Coding and Robotics.

They will also use the broad knowledge that they gain throughout the full school year with us to design an invention for completion in our final contest in June.  Their goal – design something that is a real world solution to a real world problem!   Students will present their inventions to a panel of local business people who will decide which inventions are the most viable and award prizes.

Who uses science?

Science study is a part of many important career paths that are in high demand today and are expected to remain in high demand for many decades to come.

Just to name a few, the following careers require science study at the university or college level:

Doctors, Dentists, Engineers, Chemists, Software Developers, Computer Technicians, Teachers, Food Scientists, Agricultural Scientists, Architects, Marine Biologists, Microbiologists, Forensic Scientists, Pharmacists, Veterinarians, Nurses, Radiologists, Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Chiropractors, Sports Therapists, Statisticians, Zoologists, Ecologists, Urban Planners, Digital Artists, Archeologists, Meteorologists, Environmental Scientists, Sound Engineers, Anthropologists, Physicists, Psychologists…………just to name a few.

Additionally, the analytical and critical thinking skills, as well as problem solving ability and strong communication skills that are the mark of strong science thinkers are skills required in all professions regardless of field.