At St Andrew’s Primary School, we recognise the importance of Science in every aspect of daily life. As one of the core subjects taught in Primary Schools, we give the teaching and learning of Science the prominence it requires. We take our intent from the National Curriculum and the identified needs of our children.
The national curriculum for science aims to ensure that all pupils:
- develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics;
- develop understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science through different types of science enquiries that help them to answer scientific questions about the world around them;
- are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future;
In addition, we want our children to;
- develop a love of science and enquiry;
- be open to the wonder of the world;
- use local environment and outdoor learning spaces at school (eg Forest school, Copping’s Corner);
- provide our children with wider opportunities in science and make links to other subjects;
- have exciting, practical experiences.
How we plan Science: Our science knowledge organisers provide the overview structure for our science curriculum and show how concepts and knowledge are built up as the children progress through the school.
- key learning objectives;
- recommended working scientifically suggestions;
- NC knowledge and concepts to be covered;
- non- statutory guidance;
- key vocabulary;
- suggested questions and activities;
- outdoor learning opportunities and local links;
- possible cross curricular links.
Teachers use the knowledge organisers as their starting point to plan their lessons. Our teachers also use supplementary materials to support their planning – such as Snap Science Scheme, Twinkl, Hamilton or PlanBee.
We use our working scientifically wheels to help determine the teaching approach for specific science lessons. These wheels make explicit the key features of scientific enquiry, so that pupils learn to use a variety of approaches to answer relevant scientific questions. The types of scientific enquiry include
- observing over time;
- pattern seeking;
- classifying and grouping;
- comparative and fair testing (controlled investigations);
- researching using secondary sources.
- seeking answers to questions through collecting, analysing and presenting data.
Early Years: Science within the early years is taught under the heading “Understanding the World” which is one of the seven key areas of learning. Teaching of understanding the world is linked to half termly topics for example children explore floating and sinking when thinking about the gingerbread man in our Traditional Tale topic. Science is taught through a mixture of adult led tasks and child initiated learning
Adult led tasks: Tasks are always of a practical nature and usually consist of a group discussion before leading into an adult led group task. Towards the end of the EYFS children begin to record their findings in their own way.
Child Initiated learning; During independent time children are encouraged to explore the world around them both inside and outside. This can lead to science based activities for example in winter months exploring melting in the garden when they find ice.
Each week the children take part in a forest school session where they have the opportunity to explore nature and take part in exploratory nature tasks.
Key Stage 1 and 2: Science throughout KS1 and KS2 is taught once a week for an afternoon in all classes. Using the science subject knowledge organiser and working scientifically wheels, teachers across KS1 and KS2 plan and deliver lessons that build upon prior knowledge from previous year groups and previous sessions. Throughout the academic year, classes will also engage in Forest School sessions linked to science where they are appropriate.
In our assessment of the impact of science in St Andrew’s we would expect to see;
- children enjoying and being enthusiastic about science in our school – this may be assessed by pupil voice conferences, House discussions or seen in observations;
- that children’s work shows a range of topics and evidence of the curriculum coverage for all science topics;
- a clear progression of children’s work evident in their science books;
- that children are becoming increasingly independent in science, selecting their own tools and materials, completing pupil lead investigations and choosing their own strategies for recording;
- standards in science at the end of the key stages are good and issues arising are addressed effectively in school;
- our SLT and governors are kept up to date with developments in the way science is run in our school with subject reports, action plans and review meetings.
We use a variety of formative and summative methods to assess our children to ensure they make progress.