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A high-quality science education provides the foundations for understanding the world through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics. Science has changed our lives and is vital to the world’s future prosperity, and all pupils should be taught essential aspects of the knowledge, methods, processes and uses of science. Through building up a body of key foundational knowledge and concepts, pupils should be encouraged to recognise the power of rational explanation and develop a sense of excitement and curiosity about natural phenomena. They should be encouraged to understand how science can be used to explain what is occurring, predict how things will behave, and analyse causes.
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.
science at Newton Burgoland
We want our learners to enjoy science, to be curious about scientific phenomena- routinely, asking why and what if…
Science is generally taught as a stand-alone subject, but where possible cross-curricular links are made to enhance and reinforce learning. In each class, elements of knowledge, within areas of study, are explored and revisited to ensure that misconceptions are addressed and knowledge and understanding are secured. Learners are encouraged to communicate their thinking clearly using subject specific vocabulary to support the securing of knowledge and to enable teachers to identify and address misconceptions.
Learners work scientifically in both key stages within units of study, developing understanding, skills and techniques.
Science learning includes, finding out about famous scientists; learning and using key vocabulary and concepts, and refining and developing key investigational skills.
Learners in class 3 enjoy a day of practical science at the Magna centre. In class 4, learners experience a night at the space centre. Wherever possible, we draw on stem ambassadors and parents or governors working in scientific fields to inspire learners and signpost career paths. Forest schools and a whole school trip to Leicester University Botanic Garden and Arboretum enhance and reinforce learning in a practical setting.
Approximately, 60 hours is allocated to learning in science, in both keystages, of which at least half is allocated for working scientifically. Practical work is highly valued and supports learning in mathematics, English communication and computing.
A range of non-fiction texts on aspects of scientific knowledge and understanding, suitable for young and early readers, are available within our reading scheme.
Assessment, recording and reporting progress in science
In all subjects there are three broad areas for assessment:
- Children’s knowledge and understanding
- How well children can use and apply their knowledge, understanding and skills at the end of a unit of work to complete an independent (of an adult) task or challenge.
- How well learners are developing habits for learning and character
Teachers assess learner’s work, their attitudes, increasing skills, knowledge and understanding, by making informal judgements as they observe them during lessons. This assessment enables planning to be tailored to meet learners needs. Assessment encompasses teacher, peer and self-assessment. In all subjects, opportunities for both Assessment for Learning and Assessment of Learning are built into provision. Learners are supported to reflect on their own learning and, age appropriately, to make judgements about their strengths and needs, beginning to plan how to make progress and set personal targets.
Baseline assessment, in order to understand pupils’ prior learning, is an essential part of planning to ensure new learning is relevant and progress can be assessed.
The learners work, in particular baseline assessments and end of unit assessments, which are recorded within learners’ workbooks are used to make decisions at the end of each unit, and at the end of each year, as to next learning steps and whether or not learners are making strong progress and are on track for end of key stage expectation.
Progress is recorded and reported to parents as part of the child’s annual school report
Science in early years foundation stage
Understanding the world (UTW) is one of four specific areas of learning in the EYFS Curriculum Framework.
Understanding the world 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
UTW has three aspects; People and Communities and The world being most related to future learning in Science.
People and communities: children talk about past and present events in their own lives and in the lives of family members. They know that other children don’t always enjoy the same things, and are sensitive to this. They know about similarities and differences between themselves and others, and among families, communities and traditions.
The world: children know about similarities and differences in relation to places, objects, materials and living things. They talk about the features of their own immediate environment and how environments might vary from one another. They make observations of animals and plants and explain why some things occur, and talk about changes.
Technology: children recognise that a range of technology is used in places such as homes and schools. They select and use technology for particular purposes.
Learning in Science will support learning in Maths, Personal, Social and Emotional Development and communication and Language.
Science is taught to all children, whatever their ability, in accordance with the school curriculum policy of providing a broad and balanced education to all children. Teachers provide learning opportunities matched to the needs of children with learning difficulties.