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New curriculum, text books as Chinese schools start academic year

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-09-03 09:02

Early science

Apart from literature and history, science has also been stressed as never before to early students.

Zhang Rui, science teacher with the No. 2 Primary School in Qigong Street, Shenyang, said starting from this semester, science classes started from grade one.

"In the past, science class started from grade three when students had a better comprehensive ability. But the new curriculum allows junior students access to natural sciences earlier," Zhang said.

Although there is no unified textbook for science classes, grade one children will learn about famous scientists, natural phenomena such as how wind, rain, thunder and lightening is formed and seasonal changes. Students will also be guided to make hands-on experiments.

"In science class, students can learn to take notes on their observations, and their curiosity for science problems can be trained to become scientific inquiry abilities," Zhang said.

Zhang Yonghui, headmaster of Haishou Primary School in southern China's Foshan city, said science classes in primary schools covered a variety of subjects ranging from physics and chemistry to biology and geography.

Zhang Xingying, father of a grade three student in Beijing, said schools did not offer science classes when his son was in grade one, so he often took his son to the city's science and technology museum to cultivate his interest.

Zhang is a satellite remote sensing expert with the State Meteorological Administration, and gave a lecture at his son's school last year combining seasonal description in Chinese classics with modern scientific observation of natural phenomena.

"It is important for children to learn to respect natural law at an early age. It can affect their understanding of the world, and the nation's cultural literacy," Zhang said.

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