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Science

Science Learning Journey

Science at St Oswald's

 

Intent

At St Oswald’s Catholic Primary School we want every child to be interested and inquisitive learners of Science. We follow the national curriculum programmes of study for each year group. We aim to create the very best scientists, well equipped to continue their studies in science as they move throughout their education. We challenge pupils to think, act and speak like those working in the field would. We do this by developing a consistent approach across all year groups.

 

Our children:

• gain knowledge in science formed through interesting and exciting experiences that enhance awareness of their own abilities and strengths as a learner. They use their prior knowledge and apply taught skills to solve problems and develop the sophistication of science

• see learning in science as an ongoing process not a one-off event, making links with how their learning fits with the world around them, including careers.

• will meet the National Curriculum expectations in science, taught by highly qualified staff who support children to develop mastery of concepts and inspire enthusiasm and interest in the subject

• have opportunities to experience learning beyond the classroom. This will allow them to enrich their knowledge by visiting science museums and education laboratories and exploring the natural world all around them.

 

Implementation

At St. Oswald’s, the Early Years it is the first opportunity to introduce pupils with vocabulary associated with Science.  Staff follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Statutory Framework which aims to guide children, to understand the world around them. Pupils are introduced to scientific concepts and vocabulary associated with science indirectly through activities that encourage every child to explore, problem solve, observe, predict, think, make decisions and talk about the world around them.

 

In KS1 and KS2 learning will start by revisiting prior knowledge. This will be scaffolded to support pupils to recall previous learning and make connections. Staff will model explicitly the subject-specific vocabulary, knowledge and skills relevant to the learning to allow them to integrate new knowledge into larger concepts.

 

The key threshold concepts across the Science curriculum are taught sequentially over time to develop scientific knowledge and skills from EYFS to Y6 and beyond. The curriculum is built around a process of interweaving topics, self-testing, and re-testing to aid the development of long-term memory and mastery of both skills and knowledge required. Children are taught with reference to the 3 scientific disciplines of Biology, Chemistry and Physics:

- Biology: Children learn that animals, humans and plants are made up of complex interacting systems to function. They recognise that organisms require a supply of energy to carry out basic functions of life and growth.

- Chemistry: Children learn that the Earth is a complex of interacting rock, water, air and life. They explore that particle theory of matter is the abstract idea that helps us develop an understanding of why materials behave as they do.

- Physics: Children learn that energy is a powerful and unifying abstract idea which is difficult to define. Forces change the state of rest or motion of the body.

 

  • Frequent curriculum quizzes will review learning and check that pupils are understanding and retaining knowledge. Science assessment is ongoing and informs teachers with planning lesson activities and differentiation.
  • Our scientists will be given a variety of experiences both in and out of the classroom where appropriate to create memorable learning opportunities, foster curiosity and enthusiasm for science, and to further support and develop their understanding. 
  • Each topic commences with a pre-topic assessment, which enables staff to analyse children's understanding of scientific concepts from previous academic years. Topics are compiled of a series of lessons planned for progression and depth. 
  • Planning has been reviewed to ensure clear progression. To ensure coverage, planning will consider the progression of skills, knowledge and understanding as outlined in the National Curriculum. Where possible, a cross curricula approach is adopted to maximise rich opportunities for learning and to provide further consolidation and depth of learning. Further relevance is provided when possible, where pupils can explore groundbreaking scientists and scientific discoveries, allowing them to achieve a sense of relevance and belonging through the history of science.
  • Pupils are encouraged to observe over time; pattern seeking; identifying, classifying and grouping; comparative and fair testing (controlled investigations); and researching using secondary sources. Pupils should seek answers to questions through collecting, analysing and presenting data, which will develop knowledge and understanding and prepare them for the next phase in their education. Challenge questions are used to allow pupils to consolidate knowledge and understanding where necessary or to apply learning in a philosophical/open manner.
  • Trips and visiting experts are used where possible to enhance the learning experience.

 

Impact

The implementation of this curriculum ensures that when children leave St Oswald’s Catholic Primary School, they are competent scientific investigators and are confident using scientific vocabulary. They know how to deal with challenges and have a range of strategies to overcome them. Visits within Science have enriched the lives of the children and they are able to discuss how the experience impacted their scientific knowledge and understanding. All children achieve well in Science, reflected in outstanding progress that reveals a clear learning journey. Book scrutinies demonstrate that science is taught at an age appropriate standard across each year group with some opportunities planned in for pupils working at greater depth. Work is of a good quality and demonstrates pupils are acquiring knowledge, skills and vocabulary in an appropriate sequence.  Assessment ensure pupils can demonstrate knowledge and understanding, use key vocabulary and are covering all skills in the progression of skills tracker. Children talk enthusiastically about their learning in Science and there is a proven track record of outstanding outcomes as shown in pupils’ scientific ability, verbal explanations, their books and their enjoyment of the subject. At St Oswald’s we aim to inspire the students to consider a pathway towards a scientific career and through wider reading in Science, children will know how science influenced and is central to our everyday lives and how scientists influenced improvement to our lives.

Curriculum Coverage

Awards

Motto

“We walk in the footsteps of Jesus so that we may have life in all its fullness”

John 10:10

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