Children’s Experiences and Self-Identification with Science in the Context of an Out-of-School STEM Program

Dagmar M. Heeg, Theila Smith, Lucy Avraamidou*

*Corresponding author for this work

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The goal of this case study was to examine how a group of young children in a historically marginalized neighborhood in the northern part of the Netherlands perceived their engagement in an out-of-school, STEM community-based program aiming to enhance young children’s interest and self-identification with science. We collected data through semi-structured interviews with eight purposefully selected children and analyzed those through a constant comparative approach and with the use of open coding strategies. The findings revealed specific aspects of the design of the program that were perceived as motivating and engaging: the integrated multidisciplinary approach to exploring scientific concepts and opportunities for active engagement and personally relevant science experimentation. The findings are offered alongside a set of recommendations for the design of out-of-school, community-based programs that aim to support young children’s engagement with science.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberem2091
Number of pages14
JournalEURASIA Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 9-Mar-2022

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