Our Science Curriculum
Science teaching at St Edward’s Catholic 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 St Edward’s, 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 observing, planning and carrying out 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.
Teachers are provided with medium term planning which contains key vocabulary, possible activities and ideas for working scientifically. As part of this planning process, teachers need to plan the following:
A cycle of lessons for each subject, which carefully plans for progression and depth;
A low stakes quiz which is tested regularly to support learners’ ability to block learning and increase space in the working memory;
Opportunities to talk about and question Science ideas (through weekly Explorify lessons);
Challenge questions for pupils to apply their learning in a philosophical/open manner;
Trips and visits from experts who will enhance the learning experience;
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:
A reflection on standards achieved against the planned outcomes (KPI’s);
A focused assessment for different working scientifically skills
Tracking of knowledge in pre and post learning quizzes (Quick Quizzes);
Pupil discussions about their learning;
Progression in Science
Working Scientifically Progression
A high-quality Science education provides the foundations for understanding the world through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics. 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.
At St Edward’s, we firmly believe that Science is the basis of understanding the world around us. We promote a love of Science through experiencing, investigating and questioning abstract concepts. All children across the school take part in a challenging and thought provoking curriculum, enabling them to question, predict and investigate their own thoughts and ideas. The children are encouraged to become independent in thinking, be responsible, and sensitive to living and non-living environments as well as developing a willingness to tolerate uncertainty.
Our prime aim within the Science curriculum is to nurture the children’s natural curiosity and inquisitiveness about the world’s phenomena– ‘The future belongs to the curious. The ones who are not afraid to try it, explore it, poke at it, question it and turn it inside out.’
Polar Explorer Day - Tuesday 5th February 2019
On Tuesday, we celebrated our whole school Polar Explorer Day. Our Polar Ambassador, Dr Jenny Watson, led a whole school assembly explaining the importance of polar exploration when learning about the past, present and future of our planet. Every child took part in a range of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) activities that focused on engineering, climate change, animals and adaptation, exploration and the oceans.
It was an inspiring day that enabled the children to apply their STEM skills to a real life context and learn more about current polar exploration
St Edward's Catholic School was awarded
The Primary Science Quality Mark (PSQM)
Schools Awarded Primary Science Quality Mark
The Primary School Quality Mark scheme enables schools to work together to share good practice and is supported by professional development led by local experts. It encourages teacher autonomy and innovation while at the same time offering a clear framework for development in science subject leadership, teaching and learning.
The Primary Science Quality Mark is led by the University of Hertfordshire, School of Education in partnership with the Primary Science Teaching Trust. It is supported by the Royal Society for Chemistry, the Ogden Trust and the Association for Science Education.
Jane Turner, PSQM National Director said: “Gaining a Primary Science Quality Award is a significant achievement for a school. The profile and quality of science teaching and learning in each awarded school is very high. Children are engaging with great science both in and outside the classroom, developing positive attitudes towards science as well as secure science understanding and skills. Science subject leaders, their colleagues, head teachers, children, parents and governors should be very proud."