Our Curriculum : Science
Our science curriculum is aspirational, enabling and inclusive. It is knowledge-rich and inspires pupils to develop a fascination for, and a deep understanding of, the world around them.
It is our intention that through our science curriculum children will:
- Learn how science affects their everyday lives and develop a sense of responsibility for the world.
- Learn a wide body of scientific knowledge which fosters curiosity and is developed and consolidated through practical scientific enquiry and enrichment opportunities.
- Make confident, meaningful links between their learning, the wider curriculum and the real world.
- See themselves as scientists and understand the role of a scientist in our society.
- Understand what it means study science in its broadest terms and how science can influence our thoughts and actions, now and in the future
- Use the scientific knowledge that they acquire (both substantive and disciplinary) during their primary phase to influence and guide their choices in the future.
- Have the necessary knowledge and skill-set to be secondary ready.
For more information, please refer to the NPAT Science Narrative.
At East Hunsbury Primary School, we teach an ambitious, high-quality science curriculum which is carefully constructed to ensure children develop a solid understanding of scientific concepts and knowledge. It has been collaboratively planned by NPAT.
Science is taught through six high-dividend concepts:
- Earth and Space,
- Life and
All of which are woven throughout the curriculum and form the ‘Big ideas’ through which all science is taught.
Knowledge is given a high status and ensures pupils carefully build their understanding of the subject; content is specified in detail and is sequenced in such a way that it is taught to be remembered and not just encountered.
Where appropriate, our science curriculum is taught outside the classroom providing first-hand experiences of the local environment and allowing children to observe science in the real-world and embed their learning of science into meaningful contexts. Additionally, enrichment opportunities further enhance our science curriculum by providing pupils with the opportunity to focus and deepen their scientific learning and extend their educational experiences.
Our curriculum ensures progression of substantive and disciplinary knowledge, building sequentially on prior knowledge in small steps, and incorporates explicit horizontal links across a year group, vertical links where knowledge and understanding are built upon from previous units and diagonal links across the wider curriculum.
Pupils obtain a solid understanding of key scientific concepts and knowledge which enables them to develop and enhance their mental models and use this rich breadth of knowledge to make meaningful links between scientific concepts, the wider curriculum and the real world. Specific science vocabulary is explicitly taught throughout our curriculum and is sequenced to ensure their understanding of scientific vocabulary builds and develops over time.
The science curriculum at East Hunsbury Primary School develops strong subject knowledge amongst staff through the provision of suggested reading material and ensures teachers understand both the prior knowledge pupils will have learnt and their future science learning, focusing staff on the specific knowledge to be taught in a unit. Knowledge organisers are also provided for each unit which outlines the key knowledge and the vocabulary that needs to be explicitly taught in a particular unit of work.
Enquiry and the associated investigative skills are at the core of all science learning. Observing with a scientific eye, predicting, problem-solving, decision-making, communicating, thinking critically and evaluating are common threads which underpin the science learning in our curriculum.
As part of our commitment to developing scientific excellence we have, in association with our partner schools in Europe and involvement in an Erasmus project, developed a bespoke Science Outside of the Classroom Curriculum (SoTC).
The curriculum focuses on teaching the following specific scientific skills to children:
- Identifying, comparing and classifying
The curriculum has been written in conjunction with University Northampton and now complements our existing science curriculum
The teaching of science in the Early Years is practical, playful and inclusive with support and challenge from adults in class sessions, small groups and working with individuals. A stimulating, continuous provision provides opportunities for pupils to develop their scientific knowledge and vocabulary through our early years’ curriculum.
Through Communication and Language, PSED and Understanding of the world children in the Early Years will:
- Make comments about what they have heard and ask questions to clarify their understanding
- Manage their own hygiene and personal needs, including dressing, going to the toilet and understanding the need for healthy food choices – including dental hygiene
- Explore the natural world around them, making observations and drawing pictures of animals and plants
- Know some similarities and differences between the natural world around them and contrasting environments, drawing on their experiences and what has been read in class.
- Understand some important processes and changes in the natural world around them, including the seasons and changing matter.
Science is taught for 1 hour a week in Key Stage 1 and 1½ hours a week in Key Stage 2.
We aim for all pupils to access a full science curriculum so we ensure children with SEND are supported appropriately to provide them with full accessibility to our curriculum.
At the end of our science curriculum, pupils will have a secure understanding of scientific concepts and knowledge related to the six high-dividend concepts and be able to make meaningful links between their science learning and the wider curriculum. Pupils will have well-developed enquiry and investigative skills which enable them to think critically, ask questions, evaluate evidence and draw relevant conclusions. Pupils will understand how science affects their everyday lives and will have developed a sense of responsibility for the world.
The impact of our curriculum will be assessed through a variety of methods including:
- weekly retrieval practice,
- skilful questioning in lessons,
- low stakes quizzes,
- lesson outcomes,
- end of unit assessment tasks,
- end of unit assessment grids,
- learning walks,
- book monitoring,
- professional dialogue,
- pupil voice and staff voice.