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Longitudinal Analysis of Science Teaching and Learning in Kindergarten and First-Grade

Title: A Longitudinal Analysis of Science Teaching and Learning in Kindergarten and First-Grade.
Name(s): Olgan, Refika, 1972-, author
Jones, Ithel, professor directing dissertation
Aspinwall, Leslie, outside committee member
Lake, Vickie E., committee member
Piazza, Carolyn, committee member
Department of Childhood Education, Reading and Disability Services, degree granting department
Florida State University, degree granting institution
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Issuance: monographic
Date Issued: 2008
Publisher: Florida State University
Place of Publication: Tallahassee, Florida
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: This study attempted to determine how often science is taught in the early grades as well as the science topics taught in these grades. A related purpose of the study was to determine the relationship between science teaching and students' science achievement. In doing so, the analyses took into consideration the influence of gender, socioeconomic status (SES), and race/ethnicity on children's academic performance in science. By using the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study- Kindergarten class of 1998-99 (ECLS-K) kindergarten and first-grade data files, children's science Item Response Theory Scores (IRT) and Academic Rating Scores (ARS) were examined to measure the relationship between children's early science experiences in schools and their achievement on the "General Knowledge Assessment Battery". According to this study's findings science teaching and learning in kindergarten level is somewhat limited. Additionally, the science content taught in kindergarten is narrow. The results of cross-sectional and longitudinal multilevel analyses revealed that several student and school level factors can influence young children's science achievement in kindergarten and first-grade. Although there were inconsistent conclusions about male and female students' science achievement as assessed by direct and indirect assessment batteries, there was no association between children's science scores and their gender and the amount or degree of science practices in school. While results of the analyses clearly showed that socioeconomic status (SES) had the most influence on both kindergarten and first-grade children's science achievement, the findings related to the effects of different science practices on science achievement were inconsistent. The results showed that science instruction effects some children's science achievement more than others. The findings have important implications for policies governing the teaching of science in the early grades. A clear demand exist for extension of science resource materials to include broader topics, more child-selected activities, integration with other subject areas, and more quality time for science teaching and learning in the early grades.
Identifier: FSU_migr_etd-2295 (IID)
Submitted Note: A Dissertation submitted to the School of Teacher Education in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Degree Awarded: Fall Semester, 2008.
Date of Defense: October 24, 2008.
Keywords: Science Education in Early Grades, Longitudinal Analysis
Bibliography Note: Includes bibliographical references.
Advisory Committee: Ithel Jones, Professor Directing Dissertation; Leslie Aspinwall, Outside Committee Member; Vickie E. Lake, Committee Member; Carolyn Piazza, Committee Member.
Subject(s): Education
Persistent Link to This Record:
Owner Institution: FSU

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Olgan, R. (2008). A Longitudinal Analysis of Science Teaching and Learning in Kindergarten and First-Grade. Retrieved from