Objectives

The Creative Little Scientists project is a very timely intervention which sets out to shed light on the intersection of science and mathematics education for young children with creativity, setting an overall aim which is twofold:

  • To provide Europe with a clear picture of existing and possible practices, as well as their implications and the related opportunities and challenges, in the intersection of science and mathematics learning, and creativity in pre-school and the early years of primary education (up to the pupil age of eight); and

  • To transform the knowledge generated through this into a concrete contribution towards the training of preschool staff and primary school teachers so that they are empowered to exploit the potential of creativity-based approaches to early years science and mathematics learning.

 

In this context, the proposed research is operationally defined in terms of the following specific objectives: 
 

  • To define a clear and detailed conceptual framework comprising the issues at stake and the parameters which need to be addressed in all stages of the research. To map and comparatively assess existing approaches to science and mathematics education in pre-school and first years of primary school (up to the pupil age of eight) in the nine sample countries, highlighting instances of, or recording the absence of, practices marrying science and mathematics learning, teaching and assessment with creativity.
     
  • To provide a deeper analysis of the implications of the mapped and compared approaches which will reveal the details of current practice and provide insights into whether and how children’s creativity is fostered and the emergence or appropriate learning outcomes in science and mathematics is achieved.
     
  • To propose a set of curriculum design principles as concrete guidelines for European initial teacher training and continuous professional development programmes, which will foster creativity-based approaches to science and mathematics learning in preschool and the first years of primary education.
     
  • To exploit the results of the research at the European level as well as at national and institutional level, making them easily available to educational policy makers and other stakeholders, especially teacher training policy makers and institutions. This work will start with a special focus on teacher training, and will be completed through the synthesis of all research outputs and their transformation into an accessible Final Report on Creativity and Science and Mathematics Education for Young Children and a concrete Set of Recommendations to Policy Makers and Stakeholders.
     
  • To disseminate the messages and outputs of the project widely in Europe and beyond through targeted communication actions addressing all stakeholders (teachers, school administrators, teacher trainers, curriculum designers, policy makers, parents).