Our Science curriculum is shaped by the National Curriculum for Science and our school curriculum (supported by Cornerstones), values and ethos.
“ Love each other as I have loved you.” John 15 verse 12
The 2014 National Curriculum for science aims to ensure that all pupils:
Understand and have many experiences of scientific enquiry - Like the different genres in reading:
· Observing Over Time
· Identifying, classifying and Grouping
· Pattern Seeking
· Comparative and Fair Testing
· Researching, using secondary sources.
To 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.
This is achieved through:
The National Curriculum knowledge statements (substantive knowledge) develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics.
Working scientifically (disciplinary knowledge) – Like SPaG in English. These are the skills needed to write in and understand different genres effectively.
Children are equipped with the scientific skills required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future, for example,
· asking questions
· planning an enquiry
· observing closely
· taking measurements
· gathering and recording results
· presenting resulting
· interpreting results
· drawing conclusions
· making predictions
· evaluating an enquiry..
At Chidham Parochial Primary School, our science curriculum promotes a healthy curiosity in children about the world we live in and beyond. We believe science encompasses the acquisition of knowledge (in biology, chemistry and physics), concepts, skills and positive attitudes, as well introducing children to the “big ideas” in science. These are:
1. All material in the Universe is made of very small particles.
2. Objects can affect other objects at a distance.
3. Changing the movement of an object requires a net force to be acting on it.
4. The total amount of energy in the Universe is always the same but energy can be transformed when things change or are made to happen.
5. The composition of the Earth and its atmosphere and the processes occurring within them shape the Earth’s surface and its climate.
6. The solar system is a very small part of one of millions of galaxies in the Universe.
7. Organisms are organised on a cellular basis.
8. Organisms require a supply of energy and materials for which they are often dependent on or in competition with other organisms.
9. Genetic information is passed down from one generation of organisms to another.
10. The diversity of organisms, living and extinct, is the result of evolution.
An extra four ideas are big ideas about science.
11. Science is about finding the cause or causes of phenomena in the natural world.
12. Scientific explanations, theories and models are those that best fit the evidence available at a particular time.
13. The knowledge produced by science is used in engineering and technologies to create products to serve human ends.
14. Applications of science often have ethical, social, economic and political implications.
We recognise the importance of science in every aspect of daily life. Our intent is to deliver a science curriculum which is accessible to all and that will maximise the outcomes for every child, so that they develop an enthusiasm and enjoyment of scientific learning and discovery.
The programmes of study in the National Curriculum, are delivered, through Cornerstones topics (where appropriate) each half term. The children will acquire and develop key knowledge that has been identified within each unit and across each year group, as well as the application of scientific skills. We ensure that the Working Scientifically skills are built-on and developed throughout children’s time at school, so that they can apply their knowledge of science when using equipment, building arguments, conducting experiments and explaining concepts confidently. We aim to prepare our pupils for life in an increasingly scientific and technological world. We intend learning in science to be through questioning, investigations and first hand experiences, leading to children being equipped to answer scientific questions and continue to build upon their knowledge and be curious about their surroundings and the wider world.
The science curriculum we provide, aims to give children the confidence and motivation to continue to further develop their skills into the next stage of their education and life, as well as increase their science capital (see diagram below).
What is meant by science capital?
The concept of science capital can be imagined like a 'holdall', or bag, containing all the science-related knowledge, attitudes, experiences and resources that you acquire through life.
At Chidham Parochial Primary School, teachers foster a positive attitude to science learning and reinforce an expectation that all children can achieve high standards in science.
Typically, children will be taught science once a week. This allows time for the progressive building of skills and knowledge and time to address mis-conceptions. There is a strong focus on working scientifically and providing children with opportunities to apply their knowledge. ‘Working scientifically’ specifies the understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science for each year group and this is embedded within lessons and focuses on the key features of scientific enquiry. This ensures that pupils learn to use a variety of approaches to answer relevant scientific questions.
These types of scientific enquiry (listed above), include:
· observing over time;
· pattern seeking;
· identifying, classifying and grouping;
· comparative and fair testing (controlled investigations); and
· researching using secondary sources.
Children are encouraged to ask their own questions and be given opportunities to use their scientific skills and research to discover the answers. Staff are encouraged to have a science practical display/area in classrooms linked to relevant concepts.
Each unit of work begins with a topic page and key vocabulary (a knowledge organiser), linked to the upcoming learning, this may also include questions that the children would like to find the answers to through their learning. Each unit will usually begin with a hook activity to excite children’s curiosity about a scientific phenomenon and provide a focus for their questions and investigations. The hook activity is also designed as a rich formative assessment opportunity for children to reflect on what they already know and identify what they need to learn next. Each topic provides a cycle of lessons which carefully plans for progression and depth. The use of correct scientific vocabulary is a non-negotiable and should be consistently modelled and re-enforced to embed and enhance children’s understanding. They should build up an extended specialist vocabulary and teachers should ensure that this is developed within each lesson and throughout each science topic. Teachers provide opportunities to promote science and develop children’s understanding of their surroundings by accessing outdoor learning, workshops with experts and external visits, thus enhancing the learning experience.
At a minimum, the core objectives from the curriculum are covered during each unit taught. Opportunities for ‘enrichment’ lessons provide extra breadth and depth for the topic. The science curriculum ensures that children are provided with opportunities to apply their mathematical knowledge to their understanding of science, including collecting, presenting and analysing data. Learning in science lessons is presented in
science books, with a variety of outcomes to support the learning, that has taken place. Learning is also uploaded to Seesaw, so parents and the wider school community can see and enjoy the learning experiences in specific classes, or put on display in classrooms.
The Foundation Stage deliver science content through the ‘Understanding of the World’ strand of the EYFS Framework. This involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community, through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment. They are assessed according to these targets.
Our inclusive approach and differentiation allows all children to learn regardless of race, gender, faith, culture or disability. We select and use resources that positively reflect all of the above. Teachers are aware that children bring to school different experiences, interests and strengths that will influence the way in which they learn science. Teachers use a variety of teaching styles and strategies to meet the needs of all children in their science learning. Staff are also encouraged to include BAME or traveller links to science and other subjects on their medium term plans.
At Chidham, we are exceptionally lucky to be in an area of outstanding natural beauty (Chichester Harbour). This allows us a unique opportunity to link delivering aspects of the science curriculum through using the outdoors, in topics which cover living things and their habitats, animals, including humans and plants. The Dell as well as Maybush Copse are areas close to school we regularly use to explore and learn about scientific phenomena. The corn on our school logo also has significant historical relevance and this is explored in Sow, Grow, and Farm in Year 5. We also believe in using the school grounds and wider outdoors to explore other areas of the science curriculum, such as materials, forces, and electricity, is extremely important and we use resources such as the “Let’s Go Science or STEM Trails” books to support.
Through their science education at Chidham Parochial Primary School, children would be expected to:
· be knowledgeable about the scientific content of each unit of learning.
· set up an investigations based around scientific thinking.
· be engaged in science lessons; asking scientific questions and be curious.
· show a range of topics and evidence of curriculum coverage for all science units.
· be increasingly independent in science throughout their time at school, selecting their own tools and materials, completing pupil lead investigations and be able to record in a variety of ways.
· use scientific vocabulary to communicate their understanding.
· present science learning using, where appropriate, maths and literacy skills.
· be able to make meaningful cross-curricular and wider world links.
To read our Science Policy, click here.
To view our long term plan, click here.