St Winifred’s Catholic Primary School
Click on the link below to see our curriculum for each year group:
SCIENCE Statement of Intent
At St Winifred’s our science teaching inspires curiosity in our pupils allowing them to build on their natural disposition to observe the world, ask questions and investigate to find answers. Science is at the heart of the rapidly changing world in which we live. Science changes lives and is crucial to the world’s development and prosperity. Through the disciplines of biology, chemistry, and physics, children will gain a greater understanding of this world. Our objective is that the science curriculum gives each child the opportunity to be taught knowledge and skills to lead their own inquiries. Children will learn to become critical thinkers who are able to recognise the power of rational explanation and to respect the natural world whilst exploring their place in a changing physical world. Children will be immersed in key scientific vocabulary, which supports the acquisition of scientific knowledge and understanding.
All children will be provided with a science curriculum that reflects the equality and diversity policies and practices in school.
Our science curriculum follows the guidance in the National Curriculum and links directly to scientific knowledge, skills, and understanding to ensure that learning is progressive and continuous. The science curriculum has a clearly indicated progression in key scientific knowledge and concepts, from EYFS to Year 6. Each of the 28 units of the study indicates the aspects of knowledge to be developed. We focus on the children’s ‘learning journey’ and explore where the knowledge and concepts of that particular unit fit within the learning for that particular aspect of science as the child progresses through the primary phase. Please see our science curriculum for detailed areas of study.
In the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS), children’s science education follows the early learning goals and the seven areas of interconnected learning and development. Specifically, the children learn about similarities and differences in relation to places, objects, materials, and living things. Please see the science curriculum for specific details.
Throughout each and every unit of study, teachers use strategies to ensure that children are interested and engaged in its content. At the start of each science topic, children will think about what they already know about a particular science topic, and then develop ideas about what they would like to know. Their inquiry starts with their own questions.
The emphasis in science lessons is on the children learning by doing. They take part in a broad range of practical investigations, ask their own questions about what they observe and make decisions about which types of scientific inquiry are likely to be the best ways of answering them. The children are encouraged to use the appropriate scientific vocabulary when studying each particular area of science. The opportunity to learn about scientists from a range of diverse backgrounds who are working, or have worked, in a particular area of science is also given.
Opportunities for cross-curricular work in science are used whenever possible, for example in maths, English, geography, art, and DT.
St Winifred’s is an inclusive school and teachers use Quality First Teaching to differentiate sufficiently so that all children can access lessons.
Children will be able to:
- articulate their understanding of scientific ideas and reason scientifically using scientific vocabulary
- demonstrate collaborative working
- question ideas and set up practical investigations and experiments
- demonstrate enthusiasm for science and an interest in further learning in this area
- understand the importance of science within the context of their understanding of the world
- learn about the contribution to science of a range of scientists from diverse backgrounds
- broaden their cultural capital through a variety of science-related school trips
- achieve age-related expectations in science at the end of each year.
Children will have a fun, engaging, high-quality science education, that provides them with the foundations for understanding the world that they live in. They can transfer this solid foundation to secondary school once they complete their primary education.
At St Winifred’s we teach science because we want to encourage and develop children’s natural curiosity in the world around them. We want children to become independent learners and science is at the heart of our rapidly changing world in which we live and in which children are growing. Teaching science can enable children to gain a greater understanding of this world.
As a Rights Respecting School, we strive to respect the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (article 29) Education must develop every child’s personality, talents and abilities to the full. It must encourage the child’s respect for human rights as well as respect for their parents, their own and other cultures, and the environment. The Science curriculum gives each child the opportunity to respect the natural world and explore their place in a changing physical world.
Through our teaching of science, we want to develop all pupils into children who:
- organise their thoughts
- reflect on their results and evaluate
- can communicate their ideas orally and in writing and diagrams
- who have confidence as scientists, irrespective of ability, gender or race.
When teaching science, we:
teach children to foster the skills of working scientifically by asking questions, predicting, observing and measuring, manipulating variables, gathering and interpreting results and evidence, evaluating what they have found, and researching using secondary sources;
-cover the requirements of the science programmes of study for Key Stages 1 and 2 through following the Kent scheme of work for Primary Science;
-use computing to promote learning and extend methods of recording and analysing results, for example using spreadsheets for storing and organising a range of data collected by children;
-meet the requirements of the National Curriculum by the Summer Term of Year 6 by teaching science for on average, 2 hours per week ideally in a block, or organised flexibly when necessary;
-provide opportunity for practical science enquiry to promote discovery, believing that this can enable children to become methodical, self-critical, co-operative, objective and open minded;
-provide a format for children to help them record their work;
-encourage correct use of scientific vocabulary, so that all children can understand such terms as ‘fair test’ and ‘variable’ and can speak and write with increasing precision and clarity;
-start each topic with sharing of key science words which are displayed in the classroom science area;
-work closely with children with special needs to direct their learning through appropriate questioning and give guidance and scaffolding support to record their work;
-provide access for all members of the class, irrespective of race or gender or ability, by allowing mixed groups to work together or individual enquiry when appropriate;
-ensure there is an adequate supply of resources and equipment which is stored in the science resource area;
-create an attractive, stimulating science area in each classroom which may include a display of key words, artefacts, books, drawings, posters and examples of children’s work;
-encourage children to use computing and technology equipment (simulations, data loggers, microscopes, digital cameras, internet), topic books and encyclopaedias to help them with research;
-ensure safety regulations are met by alerting staff to possible hazards in the medium term planning guidelines; and
-we maintain care of equipment and encourage children to develop a sense of responsibility towards it.
Policy into Practice
- Class teachers timetable science lessons each week.
- Good quality science teaching and learning Engages the children, lets them Explore and allows them to Explain what they have found out. It Extends their knowledge, and they can Evaluate their knowledge and skills.
- Good science teaching includes clear exposition by the teacher, skilful questioning of pupils and a mixture of teacher demonstration, independent use of reference resources and practical and experimental work by the pupils. Science can be delivered through a mixture of individual, small group and whole class teaching, where appropriate.
- To aid planning and coverage we use Kent Scheme of Work for Primary Science as our core scheme. Other online resources are used to enhance and supplement the teaching of science – TigTag, Explorify and Hamilton Trust.
- We organise at least one science trip (including Horton Kirby Environmental Centre) each year (lock-down regulations permitting).
- Where appropriate, we invite science experts and outreach workers to come into school to do workshop eg Andrew Smith (bug man) or Science Museum Outreach and local GP, dentist or an environmentalist.
- The school has a well-stocked science resources area.
Curriculum and planning
Medium term planning from Edukent is on the central resource file for teachers, who modify these plans to ensure good pace, coverage and assessment opportunities.
Record Keeping and Assessment
All Science work is neatly presented in A4 science books and marked regularly in accordance with the school’s marking policy.
Children are assessed on their knowledge and understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science. Teacher assessment is carried out at the end of each topic using the assessment grid from Edukent medium term plans.
Teacher assessment is shared with the science co-ordinator and SLT once a term.
The Science co-ordinator carries out termly sampling of science books and classroom displays to ensure high quality teaching and learning of science throughout the school. Feedback is given and good practice shared with colleagues.
Where needs arise, the science co-ordinator has the opportunity to support colleagues, especially NQTs through team teaching and lesson observations.
Any member staff seeking support in the teaching of science are given the opportunity to attend suitable courses when they become available. This is arranged with the science co-ordinator or SLT. The science co-ordinator and head teacher arrange regular INSET including staff meetings.