Science

Children are naturally curious. Science at primary school should nurture this curiosity and allow them to ask questions and develop the skills they need to answer those questions. 

Primary science helps pupils to:

Investigate problems 

Learn how science works

Discover why science matters in the world. 

Science is high on our agenda at St Stephen's and we are currently re-designing our science curriculum to ensure that our children receive the best science education possible.

Below is an overview of how we teach science at St Stephen's.  We work on a two year cycle ensuring that all children are taught the knowledge required for their key stage.

Science Curriculum Statement

 

Science Intent

 

At St Stephen’s Primary School, our children are SCIENTISTS! Our intent is to give every child a broad and balanced Science curriculum which enables them to confidently explore and discover what is around them, so that they have a deeper understanding of the world we live in. We want our children to love science. We want them to have no limits to what their ambitions are and grow up wanting to be astronauts, forensic scientists, toxicologists or microbiologists. We want our children to remember their science lessons in our school, to cherish these memories and embrace the scientific opportunities they are presented with! To achieve this, it involves exciting, practical hands on experiences that encourage curiosity and questioning. Our aim is that these stimulating and challenging experiences help every child secure and extend their scientific knowledge and vocabulary, as well as promoting a love and thirst for learning. At St.Stephen’s, we have a coherently planned and sequenced curriculum which has been carefully designed and developed with the need of every child at the centre of what we do. We want to equip our children with not only the minimum statutory requirements of the science National Curriculum but to prepare them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life.

 

Science Implementation

 

At St. Stephen’s, Science topics are taught within each year group in accordance with the National Curriculum.

  • Topics are blocked to allow children to focus on developing their knowledge and skills, studying each topic in depth.
  • Every year group will build upon the learning from prior year groups therefore developing depth of understanding and progression of skills.
  • Teachers promote enjoyment and foster interest of the scientific disciplines; Biology, Chemistry and Physics.
  • Children explore, question, predict, plan, carry out investigations and observations as well as conclude their findings.
  • Children present their findings and learning using science specific language, observations and diagrams.
  • In order to support children in their ability to ‘know more and remember more’ there are regular opportunities to review the learning taken place in previous topics as well as previous lessons.
  • At the start of each topic children will review previous learning and will have the opportunity to share what they already know about a current topic.
  • Effective CPD and standardisation opportunities are available to staff to ensure high levels of confidence and knowledge are maintained.
  • To support teaching, teachers access a range of resources but the planning is personalised to our school.
  • Effective use of education visits and visitors are planned, to enrich and enhance the pupil’s learning experiences within the Science curriculum.
  • Teachers use highly effective assessment for learning in each lesson to ensure misconceptions are highlighted and addressed.
  • Effective modelling by teachers ensures that children are able to achieve their learning intention, with misconceptions addressed within it.
  • Through using a range of assessment tools, differentiation is facilitated by teachers, to ensure that each pupil can access the Science curriculum.
  • Children are given clear success criteria in order to achieve the learning intention with differing elements of independence.
  • Pupils are regularly given the opportunity for self or peer assessment, which will then be used to inform planning, preparation, differentiation and address misconceptions within that lesson, or for the next lesson.
  • Cross-curricular links are planned for, with other subjects such as Maths, English and computing.

 

EYFS

The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum supports children’s understanding of Science through the planning and teaching of ‘Understanding the World.’ Children find out about objects, materials and living things using all of their senses looking at similarities, differences, patterns and change. Both the environment and skilled teachers foster curiosity and encourage explorative play, children are motivated to ask questions about why things happen and how things work. Our children are encouraged to use their natural environment around them to explore. Children enjoy spending time outdoors exploring mini-beasts and their habitats, observing the changing seasons, plants and animals. Children regularly participate in cookery and baking sessions which allows them to experience changes in state as ingredients are mixed, heated and cooled.

 

Science Impact

The impact of this curriculum design will lead to outstanding progress over time, across key stages, relative to a child’s individual starting point and their progression of skills. Through various workshops, trips and interactions with experts our Science curriculum will lead pupils to be enthusiastic Science learners and understand that science has changed our lives and that it is vital to the world’s future prosperity. We want to empower our children so they understand they have the capability to change the world. This is evidenced in a range of ways, including pupil voice, their work and their overwhelming enjoyment for science.

 

Diversity

At St. Stephen’s we are committed to promoting a positive and diverse science curriculum.  The scientists that we study cover a diverse background with a variety of cultures, religions, beliefs, ethnicities and social background.  We aim to remain current to ensure that children are able to relate their science learning not only to historical figures in science but also modern scientists and modern science in general.

 

 

British Science Week 2022

 

In March we celebrated British Science Week.  British Science Week is a 10-day celebration and the idea behind the programme is to raise awareness, spark enthusiasm and celebrate science, engineering, technology and maths with people of all ages and from all walks of life. 

This year St Stephens decided to focus on two themes within science which were STEM career opportunities and conservation.   

A few months ago we reached out to parents/carers who have STEM careers and during science week six members of the St Stephens family donated their time to deliver aspirational career talks to our children.  Our visitors had a varying range of careers from a Nuclear Engineer to a Physiotherapist awarded an OBE by the Queen! Nursery and Reception donned white lab coats and became scientists for the week, completing lots of exciting experiments to inspire them into the world of science.

Our aim was to demonstrate to our children that if you work hard and aspire to greatness you can achieve anything you want to! 

Our second focus for the week was conservation, in particular the conservation of our school/local area.  Each class was set a task to design and build a variety of structures such as bird boxes, hedgehog homes and bug hotels.  Once these were made, they were placed in our environmental area so we can conserve the wildlife in and around our school.  Year 5 took part in a litter pick to tidy up our school grounds.

In addition to the projects that happened in and around school we were extremely lucky to have the opportunity to work with Myplace.  Myplace is an exciting and innovative Nature and Wellbeing project delivered by the Wildlife Trust for Lancashire, Manchester and North Merseyside in partnership with the Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust.  Myplace empowers people and their communities to connect with local environments in order to learn new skills, build resilience, meet new people and improve their physical health and mental wellbeing.  Myplace run sessions on Thursday afternoons in our environmental area with members of the public however they kindly agreed to run a session with our Eco Council as part of British Science Week.

Finally, as a school we are extremely aware of the affect plastic is having on the Earth's oceans and wildlife.  We want to help children understand that although conserving our local area is important, we must look at the bigger picture and try and do our bit to conserve the Earth for future generations.  We set the children a challenge.  We asked them to get creative and think of the best use of a recycled plastic bottle.   We had all sorts of entries such as robots, cars, bird feeders, mice and an octopus!

 

We were thrilled to spend time celebrating science and we are certain the children felt inspired.

 

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