Subject Leader: Mrs C Beresford
Please click on the links below to find out more about how science is taught throughout school
What are our aims in Science?
At King’s Meadow Academy, we aim to prepare our children to become scientists by providing them with a relevant, meaningful and hands on approach to science. We encourage the children to become curious, enthusiastic and independent learners as this prepares them for the future and understanding their role in society.
In Science pupils will have the opportunity to:
• Ask simple questions and recognise that they can be answered in different ways• Make observations and take measurements • Engage in practical enquiry to answer questions • Record and present evidence • Answer questions and draw conclusions • Evaluate and raise further questions and predictions • Communicate their findings.
How is the subject taught?
We follow the National Curriculum programmes of study to ensure cohesion and progression across each year group. A two-year, long term rolling programme maps out the coverage of the discrete teaching and learning opportunities for children to develop and embed specific skills. We ensure the topics have been carefully sequenced to show progression, which is taught systematically for all pupils to acquire the intended knowledge and skills. Teachers are clear on the learning and expectations for each year group, as this has been carefully selected and mapped out so that children are building on prior knowledge and skills each term and each year.We use PLAN progression of skills and knowledge document in school to ensure coverage and progression is appropriate to age and stage of development. When children are learning about a subject through a discrete teaching session, they are explicitly told that today they are going to be ‘scientists.’ They are then reminded of the key skills that they will learn, use and develop within this subject.
The science curriculum is designed to ensure all children can access every programme of study. Teachers plan and provide a range of scaffolds to ensure all children, including our SEND pupils, are able to access all components of each lesson. Many of our children have little experience with investigative science outside of the classroom. To address this, we provide relevant and carefully chosen opportunities for our children to do and observe science through their own investigations. This gives all children, even those with SEND, worthwhile learning opportunities, ensuring that they are interested in their lessons and inspired to continue their science learning. The vocabulary of many of our children is limited, therefore in order to expand their vocabulary and make sure they understand how to use it in the appropriate context, a variety of scientific terminology related to the topic is displayed and regularly reviewed in each classroom. Modelling is used by class teachers to clarify expectations, children are then given plentiful opportunities to consolidate, build upon and apply basic skills and knowledge, across a series of lessons, as well as across the year.
As well as the discrete teaching of knowledge in science lessons, science investigation days are planned to ensure that children have regular opportunities to embed their knowledge and consolidate their skills throughout the year. Children engage in practical, ‘hands on’ learning, visits out, as well as visitors to school, to enhance their science experiences further.
Teaching Science in EYFS
In Science EYFS pupils will have the opportunity to:
- Show curiosity and ask questions
- Make observations and use their senses and simple equipment
- Make direct comparisons
- Use equipment to measure
- Record their observations by drawing, taking photographs, using sorting rings or boxes, and, in Reception simple tick sheets
- Use their observations to help them answer their questions
- Talk about what they are doing and have found out
- Identify, sort and group
In EYFS, it is our role to provide meaningful opportunities for children to learn, practise and apply skills in a range of contexts. This includes returning to concepts regularly to build on knowledge, skills and understanding in order to develop a deep understanding. We encourage children to make links in their learning across all areas of the curriculum, so that they are able to draw on the necessary skills to solve new problems. In order to succeed, we believe children need to learn to take risks and learn from their mistakes.
Our scientific learning in EYFS builds on children’s prior experiences and backgrounds and provides access to science experiences for all. It utilises children’s natural curiosity and encourages children to pursue their own questions and develop their own ideas. Through effective interactions with supportive adults, it engages children in in-depth exploration of a topic over time in a carefully prepared environment with support and challenge. It is embedded in children’s play and integrated with other areas of learning. Through revisiting key concepts, knowledge and vocabulary over the year, children are able to reflect on, represent and document their experiences as well as share and discuss their ideas with others. In this way, children are prepared for the National Curriculum requirements for Year 1.
How do we know that our children are making progress?
Ongoing assessments of the children’s knowledge and skills is observed by the class teacher. Misconceptions are addressed and next steps are carefully planned. Every lesson begins with a ‘Flashback’, which consists of four questions in total. One each regarding the prior year, the prior subject, the prior week, and a vocabulary question. By activating prior knowledge and revisiting theme previously covered helps children to commit facts into their long-term memory. The assessment is then used by teachers to determine if each child has “met” or “has not met” the science objectives. This is used to plan appropriate next steps for their future learning, as well as provide an overview of learning within a subject area across the whole school.