The overall goal of the Early Childhood Hands-On Science (ECHOS) model is to increase teachers’ ability to introduce basic science concepts to preschool children through the use of a guided inquiry-based curriculum.

Core elements of the ECHOS approach are the modeling of science process skills and the use of guided inquiry and exploration. Science lessons and integration activities are designed to build on children’s existing knowledge base. Using concrete, hands-on materials and guided exploration directed by the sequenced lessons, teachers introduce the content and science process skills that help children build meaning over time. The lessons provide new experiences that will become the foundation for the development of more complex science concepts introduced later in their schooling. To learn more about ECHOS curriculum in detail, read the 2022 ECHOS Curriculum Brochure found on the resources page.

E-I-E-I-O Learning Framework

To learn more about the framework, click on the video below.

Unit Overviews

The curriculum features the following life science, physical science and earth science units listed below. Each Unit Overview includes a short video clip from an ECHOS science lesson.

Young girls holding an umbrella in the rain

Rainy Weather

Unit Goal: Children explore where precipitation comes from, what it is and where water goes after it rains.

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Young boy using magnifying glass on plant

Beginning Botanist

Unit Goal: Children learn about the parts of plants and what plants need to live and grow.

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Young boy playing with a duck puppet

Feathered Friends

Unit Goal: Children discover that different types of birds have different types of beaks, feet and feathers to help them live in different habitats.  

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Young boy playing with a bee stuffed animal

Busy Buzzing Bees

Unit Goal: Children learn about the special features of honeybees and their important role in helping transfer pollen from one flower to another.

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Young girl holding shell to her ear

Discovering Shells

Unit Goal: Children use multiple attributes to sort and categorize shells, and learn about their functions.

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Young boy using book on blocks

Blocks Measure Up

Unit Goal: Children use blocks as an alternative measurement tool to compare the length and height of objects.

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Young girl playing with water

Water Play

Unit Goal: Children use science processes to investigate volume, water displacement and buoyancy.

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Young girl creating bubbles with a straw

Astonishing Air

Unit Goal: Children engage in trial-and-error investigations that allow them to observe the presence of air and explore its properties.

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Young boy using magnets and paper clips

Magnificent Magnets

Unit Goal: Children engage in investigative activities that encourage them to explore how magnets interact with common magnetic and nonmagnetic objects.

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