The Virginia Association for Early Childhood Education (VAECE), the Virginia state NAEYC affiliate, gathered early childhood educators together for a three-day conference. I attended sessions and presented twice on "Ramps and pathways: An appropriate and fun science of motion and engineering activity for young children."
During this session, participants explored the motion of objects on ramps, beginning with just one ball and a short ramp piece, and later exploring the motion of objects of various sizes, weights, and shapes. Adults and children begin exploring with these materials by making a simple ramp--complex structures come after more experience! With additional materials, participants branched out and built complex paths. They talked about their observations and argued for design changes to satisfy their curiosity and accomplish their goals. And made plans to bring the materials to the children in their programs!
Thank you to all the VAECE volunteers who made the conference such a success!