At St Michael’s Academy we have designed our science curriculum with the intent that our children will develop an in-depth understanding of the world around them and an understanding of how major scientific ideas and discoveries have played a vital role in the progress of society, to prepare them for life in an increasingly scientific world.
Scientific learning is concerned with increasing pupils’ knowledge and understanding of our world, and with developing skills associated with Science as a process of enquiry. Our engaging curriculum will nurture children’s natural curiosity, encourage respect for living organisms and the physical environment and it will provide opportunities for critical evaluation of evidence.
We endeavour to build science capital for all our children so that they are inspired to continue to use science in their everyday life, future education and careers. As part of this, we have an exciting STEM presentation programme whereby parents and friends of the school visit to talk about their science-based careers in a way that is linked to current science learning.
At St Michael’s Primary School, in conjunction with the aims of the National Curriculum, our Science curriculum offers opportunities for children to:
- Develop a lifelong sense of enthusiastic curiosity; a secure understanding of the role science plays within society and resilience to pursue answers to scientific questions.
- Develop the essential scientific enquiry skills to deepen their scientific knowledge, within a progressive framework of learning.
- Be equipped with the scientific knowledge and scientific enquiry skills required to understand the uses and implications of Science, today and for the future.
- Develop a respect for the materials and equipment they handle with regard to their own, and other children’s safety.
- Develop understanding of the nature, processes and methods of Science through different types of science enquiries that help them to answer scientific questions about the world around them.
Our science curriculum is based on a scheme of work devised by school science leaders, school improvement leaders from within St Christopher’s trust and a science specialist. The scheme facilitates the acquisition of science knowledge through the use and development of scientific enquiry skills. The scheme was launched in January 2022 and replaces the previous knowledge organisers.
Based on this, teachers create engaging lessons, often involving high-quality resources to aid understanding of conceptual knowledge. Teachers use precise questioning in class to test conceptual knowledge and skills, and assess children regularly to identify those children with gaps in learning, so that all children keep up.
The whole school overview shows the progression of knowledge, skills and vocabulary covering the fields of biology, chemistry and physics. This underpins a spiral approach to learning whereby children will revisit similar areas of science but in a deeper way as they progress through the school.
Science knowledge and skills are assessed at different points throughout each unit using investigations and an independent science skills lesson from TAPs.
Children are made aware of where Science fits as a subject within the STEM fields and are inspired to consider careers in Science through our rolling programme of STEM based professionals, mainly parents, who deliver presentations about their job to classes at school
Science will be taught discreetly across the school through weekly sessions although some units may be blocked and applied in theme weeks. Science learning will be on display within rooms, in learning journey books and in floor books where relevant (KS1).
- Children will be curious, resilient and independent and will see themselves as scientists capable of finding accurate answers to scientific questions
- The successful application of intent and implementation at St Michaels Primary should result in an engaging, high-quality science education, that provides children with the foundations for science learning in KS3 and beyond.
- Science will be a high-profile subject throughout the school
- Where possible, we bring the outdoors inside through having animal expert visitors, planetarium dome presentations in the hall or simply conducting investigations around plants in classrooms. Through various workshops, trips and interactions with experts and local charities, children will have the understanding that Science can change lives and that it is vital to the world’s future prosperity.
- Children will learn the possibilities for careers in science as a result of our community links and ongoing STEM workshop programme.
MONITORING & REVIEW
The coordination and planning of the science curriculum are the responsibility of the Science Lead who takes responsibility for the following:
• supporting colleagues in their teaching, by keeping them informed about current developments in science, providing a strategic lead and direction for this subject and signposting to CPD opportunities in science
• gives the Head Teacher feedback in which s/he evaluates the strengths and weaknesses in science and indicates areas for further improvement
• uses specific allocated regular management time to review evidence of the children’s work / progress and to observe science lessons across the school
• sharing best practice regarding science with teachers
Science in EYFS
Science is explored through the children’s understanding of the world. Learning in the outside environment is key to enhancing child-led learning. We provide opportunities for children to question, wonder, explore, discover, experiment and observe through direct experiences. The children are introduced to scientific vocabulary to help them further their understanding and are asked open-ended questions, so that they can make predictions and give them opportunities to question. Our Early Years provision ensures that children have access to a range of materials that work in different ways for various purposes. Children can use resources and the environment around them to notice similarities and differences, changes over time such as a growing sunflowers and discuss their point of view with their peers.