Our planning encourages:
● A strong focus on developing knowledge alongside scientific skills across Biology, Chemistry and Physics.
● Curiosity and excitement about familiar and unknown observations.
● Challenging misconceptions and demystifying truths.
● Continuous progression by building on practical and investigative skills across all units.
● Critical thinking, with the ability to ask perceptive questions and explain and analyse evidence.
● Development of scientific literacy using wide-ranging, specialist vocabulary. Our objective is for pupils to meet the end of key stage attainment targets in the National Curriculum.
● Scientific knowledge and understanding of:
- Biology - living organisms and vital processes.
- Chemistry - matter and its properties.
- Physics - how the world we live in ‘works’.
● Working scientifically - processes and methods of science to answer questions about the world around us.
● Science in action - uses and implications of science in the past, present and for the future.
Our Science curriculum is spiral, with essential knowledge and skills revisited with increasing complexity, allowing pupils to revise and build on their previous learning. A range of engaging recall activities promote frequent pupil reflection on prior learning, ensuring new learning is approached with confidence. The Science in action strand is interwoven throughout the scheme to make the concepts and skills relevant to pupils and inspiring for future application. Cross-curricular links are included throughout each unit, allowing children to make connections and apply their Science skills to other areas of learning.
Each unit is based upon one of the key science disciplines; Biology, Chemistry and Physics and to show progression throughout the school we have grouped the National Curriculum content into six key areas of science:
Animals, including humans
Living things and habitats
Earth and space
Pupils explore knowledge and conceptual understanding through engaging activities and an introduction to relevant specialist vocabulary. As suggested in Ofsted’s Science research review (April 2021), the ‘working scientifically’ skills are integrated with conceptual understanding rather than taught discretely. This provides frequent, but relevant, opportunities for developing scientific enquiry skills.
We utilise practical activities that aid in the progression of individual skills and also provides opportunities for full investigations.
Each year group has an optional exploratory ‘Making connections’ unit that delves beyond the essential curriculum, assimilating prior knowledge and skills to evoke excitement and to provide an additional method of assessing scientific attainment. Lessons incorporate various teaching strategies from independent tasks to paired and group work, including practical, creative, computer-based and collaborative tasks. This variety means that lessons are engaging and appeal to those with different learning styles.
Knowledge organisers for each unit help to identify prior and future curriculum links to make the scheme as meaningful as possible and reinforce key technical terms.
Furthermore, each unit has a unit quiz and a knowledge and skills catcher, which can be used at the beginning and/or end of the unit to provide a summative assessment.
Opportunities for children to communicate using scientific vocabulary will also form part of the assessment process in each unit.
Pupils should leave our school equipped with the requisite skills and knowledge to succeed in Key Stage 3 Science. They will have the necessary tools to confidently and meaningfully question and explore the world around them as well as critically and analytically experiencing and observing phenomena. Pupils will understand the significance and impact of Science on society.
The expected impact is that children will:
- Develop a body of foundational knowledge for the Biology topics in the National Curriculum: Plants; Animals, Including Humans; Living Things and Their Habitats; Evolution and Inheritance.
- Develop a body of foundational knowledge for the Chemistry topics in the National Curriculum: Everyday Materials; Uses of Everyday Materials; Properties and Changes of Materials; States of Matter; Rocks.
- Develop a body of foundational knowledge for the Physics topics in the National Curriculum: Seasonal Changes; Forces and Magnets; Sound; Light; Electricity; Earth and Space.
- Be able to evaluate and identify the methods that ‘real world’ scientists use to develop and answer scientific questions.
- Identify and use equipment effectively to accurately gather, measure and record data.
- Be able to display and convey data in a variety of ways, including graphs.
- Analyse data in order to identify, classify, group, and find patterns.
- Use evidence to formulate explanations and conclusions.
- Demonstrate scientific literacy through presenting concepts and communicating ideas using scientific vocabulary.
- Understand the importance of resilience and a growth mindset, particularly in reference to scientific enquiry.
- Meet the end of key stage expectations outlined in the National Curriculum for Science.
By the end of their time with us, our children will think, learn and speak like scientists.