Science Subject Aims
Intent, Implementation and Impact.
St Bernadette’s School understands the need for all pupils to develop their scientific knowledge and skills in order to understand the world around them. A good understanding of scientific concepts helps to support pupils learning across the school.
At St Bernadette’s Primary School we believe that a high quality science education provides the foundations for understanding the world. Science has changed our lives and is vital to the world’s future prosperity, and all pupils should be taught essential aspects of the knowledge, methods, processes and uses of science. Through building up a body of key foundational knowledge and concepts, pupils should be encouraged to recognise the power of rational explanation and develop a sense of excitement and curiosity about natural phenomena. They should be encouraged to understand how science can be used to explain what is occurring, predict how things will behave, and analyse causes.
Science in our school is about developing children’s ideas and ways of working that enable them to make sense of the world in which they live through investigation, as well as using and applying process skills. It is the aim of the staff at St Bernadette’s ensure that all children are exposed to high quality teaching and learning experiences. They are immersed in scientific vocabulary with the support of knowledge organisers, which aid children’s knowledge and understanding, not only of the topic they are studying, but of the world around them. We intend to provide all children regardless of ethnic origin, gender, class, aptitude or disability, with a broad and balanced science curriculum.
In ensuring high standards of teaching and learning in science, we implement a curriculum that is progressive throughout the whole school. Last year a clear path to provide a Science ‘Catch-up’ curriculum was followed. This catered for the needs of all of our children who had lost valuable school learning time due to the lock-downs during the pandemic. Each teacher was aware of what areas of the curriculum were missed by their existing cohort during the previous year. These areas were addressed first to provide a redress on the correct teaching sequence of Science units in line with our original school curriculum plan. From the beginning of this academic year we were back in line with our regular Science long term plan. Pre-learning is still however a specific focus within school with all of the teachers now planning their Science topics with a clear understanding of the curriculum path that their children have followed.
Science teaching at St Bernadette’s Primary School involves adapting and extending the curriculum to match all pupils’ needs. Where possible, Science is linked to class topics. Science is taught as discrete units and lessons where needed to ensure coverage. Due to one form year groups in our school, Science units are taught on a year rolling programme. This ensures progression between year groups and guarantees topics are covered. Teachers plan to suit their children’s interests, current events, their own teaching style, the use of any support staff and the resources available.
We ensure that all children are provided with rich learning experiences that aim to:
- Prepare our children for life in an increasingly scientific and technological world today and in the future.
- Help our children acquire a growing understanding of the nature, processes and methods of scientific ideas.
- Help develop and extend our children’s scientific concept of their world.
- Build on our children’s natural curiosity and developing a scientific approach to problems.
- Encouraging open-mindedness, self-assessment, perseverance and developing the skills of investigation – including: observing, measuring, predicting, hypothesising, experimenting, communicating, interpreting, explaining and evaluating.
- Develop the use of scientific language, recording and techniques.
The impact and measure of this is to ensure children not only acquire the science capital and appropriate age related knowledge linked to the science curriculum, but also skills which equip them to progress from their starting points, and within their everyday lives.
To measure the impact of teaching and learning of Science in school, we have recently, during lock-down, updated the school assessment system. The school now uses the Headstart assessment scheme to augment the class teacher’s professional judgement for Science progress and attainment. This brings the subject onto a par with the other Core subjects and allows future scope for effective attainment and achievement monitoring of impact on pupil progress across school.
Across the school year there are many checks to monitor and evaluate the impact of Science learning through the school to ensure that all children will have:
- A wider variety of skills linked to both scientific knowledge and understanding, and scientific enquiry/investigative skills.
- A richer vocabulary which will enable to articulate their understanding of taught concepts.
- High aspirations for their Science learning, which will see them through to future study that will help them with work and a successful adult life.