Science

Intent:  

Science teaching at Woodcocks’ Well CE (VA) Primary School aims to give all children a strong understanding of the world around them, whilst acquiring specific skills and knowledge to help them to think scientifically, to gain an understanding of scientific processes and also an understanding of the uses and implications of Science, today and for the future. At Woodcocks’ Well, scientific enquiry skills are embedded in each topic the children study and these topics are revisited and developed throughout their time at school. Topics, such as Plants, are taught in Key Stage One and studied again in further detail throughout Key Stage Two. This model allows children to build upon their prior knowledge and increases their enthusiasm for the topics whilst embedding this procedural knowledge into the long-term memory. All children are encouraged to develop and use a range of skills including observations, planning and investigations, as well as being encouraged to question the world around them and become independent learners in exploring possible answers for their scientific based questions. Specialist vocabulary for topics is taught and built up, and effective questioning to communicate ideas is encouraged. Concepts taught should be reinforced by focusing on the key features of scientific enquiry, so that pupils learn to use a variety of approaches to answer relevant scientific questions.  

Implementation:  

The Science subject leader is responsible for the curriculum design, delivery and impact in this subject. To ensure high standards of teaching and learning in science, we implement a curriculum that is progressive throughout the whole school. Science is taught in discrete lessons for at least 1 hour 15 minutes in Key Stage One and 2 hours in Key Stage Two. We ensure that teachers have the same expectations during Science lessons that they would have when teaching English or Mathematics and that any mathematical task (such as measuring or drawing graphs) is pitched at an age-appropriate level to ensure sufficient challenge.  

The science curriculum at Woodcocks Well is based upon the 2014 Primary National Curriculum in England, which provides a broad framework and outlines the knowledge and skills taught in each Key Stage. Teachers plan lessons for their class using Hamilton trust mixed age scheme of learning and our knowledge, skills and vocab document. When teaching science, teachers should follow the children’s interests to ensure their learning is engaging, broad and balanced. Before planning a unit of work, teachers should assess children’s prior knowledge and understanding to ensure work is pitched at the correct level. A variety of teaching approaches are used based on the teacher’s judgement. Teaching key subject specific vocabulary is also a key part of our science curriculum. The vocabulary children will need for that unit is identified on the school’s progression document and this builds upon the vocabulary they have learnt in earlier years. As part of this planning process, teachers need to plan the following:  

▪ A knowledge organiser which outlines knowledge (including vocabulary) all children must master;  

▪ A low stakes quiz which is tested regularly to support learners’ ability to block learning and increase space in the working memory;  

▪ Challenge questions for pupils to apply their learning in a philosophical/open manner; 

 ▪ Trips and visits from experts who will enhance the learning experience;  

 

Science assessment is based on teacher’s assessment of children, who will use PSTT TAPs assessment to support them. This is then reported on the school’s assessment document and the percentage of children working at, above and below the expected standard are identified. At the end of Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 the results are submitted. At the end of a unit, teachers will identify if a child is working at the expected standard for that objective. This is then passed on to the next class teacher as a record of the child’s progress throughout the year. During staff meetings, science work is moderated against the exemplification document published. At the end of the year, the Science lead takes Year 2 and Year 6 work to be externally moderated alongside other schools. 

At Woodcocks Well, we provide a variety of opportunities for science learning inside and outside the classroom. Learning outside of the classroom, especially in our “Forest School” setting, is an essential part to learning science. It is essential children observe and immerse themselves in their local environment to apply their learning practically to real-life situations. 

CPD will be offered to staff where needed, this may be a course to attend, an online CPD programme to take part in or the subject leader delivering training to the rest of the staff. 

Impact:  

Our Science Curriculum is high quality, well thought out and is planned to demonstrate progression. If children are keeping up with the curriculum, they are deemed to be making good or better progress. In addition, we measure the impact of our curriculum through the following methods:  

  • Assessing children’s understanding of topic linked vocabulary before and after the unit is taught 
  • Using dialogic learning tasks to assess children’s understanding 
  • Summative assessment of pupil discussions about their learning. 
  • Images and videos of thechildren’spractical learning.  
  • Interviewing the pupils about their learning (pupil voice) 
  • Moderation staff meetings where pupil’s books are scrutinised and there is the opportunity for a dialogue between teachers to understand their class’s work 
  • External moderation of children’s work at the end of each Key Stage 
  • Formal reporting of standards at the end of each Key Stage

 

The science subject leader will continually monitor the impact the science teacher is having on the children’s learning through scrutinising children’s work including their books to ensure the progress of knowledge and skills is being taught. They will also ensure the knowledge taught is retained by the children and continually revisited and that the learners are able to apply the skills they have been taught to a variety of different settings, showing independence with their learning. 

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