Science Intent Statement
At Therfield First School, we encourage our children to be naturally curious about the world around them, fostering a sense of awe and wonder. We provide a stimulating, engaging and challenging learning environment, with a real emphasis on outdoor learning. Pupils are encouraged to develop and use a range of working scientifically skills, including, questioning, researching and observing for ourselves. Carefully planned activities allow children to learn the essential aspects of the knowledge, methods, processes and uses of science.
As pupils progress, we prepare them for an increasingly scientific and technological world. Through investigative science, pupils will continue to deepen their respect for the natural world and increase their care and appreciation of it.
The Science Curriculum
Statutory requirements for the teaching and learning of Science are set out in the National Curriculum Science Document and in the sections of the Early Years Foundation Stage Document.
Key Areas within the Science Curriculum:
The 2014 National Curriculum for science aims to ensure that all pupils:
Develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics.
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.
Are equipped with the scientific skills required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future.
We understand that it is important for lessons to have a skills-based focus, and that the knowledge can be taught through this.
How Science is Taught at Therfield First School
Teachers create a positive attitude to science learning within their classrooms and reinforce an expectation that all pupils can achieve high standards in science. Our whole school approach to the teaching and learning of science involves the following.
In the Early Years, Science is taught under the heading of ‘Understanding the World’ ‘Physical Development’ and ‘Expressive Arts and Design’. Play underpins the delivery of all the EYFS. In playing, children behave in different ways: sometimes within their play, they may describe and discuss what they are doing and sometimes they may be more reflective and quieter as they play. Within a secure and challenging environment with effective support, children can explore, develop and experiment as they play to help them make sense of the world.
Science will be taught in planned and arranged topic blocks by the class teacher, to have a project-based approach. This is a strategy to enable the achievement of a greater depth of knowledge.
Through our planning, we involve problem solving opportunities that allow children to apply their knowledge and find out answers for themselves. Children are encouraged to ask their own questions and be given opportunities to use their scientific skills and research to discover the answers. This curiosity is celebrated within the classroom.
We build upon the knowledge and skill development of the previous years. As the children’s knowledge and understanding increases, and they become more proficient in selecting, using scientific equipment, collating and interpreting results, they become increasingly confident in their growing ability to come to conclusions based on real evidence.
Working Scientifically skills are embedded into lessons to ensure these skills are being developed throughout the children’s school career and new vocabulary and challenging concepts are introduced through direct teaching. This is developed through the years, in-keeping with the topics.
Teachers demonstrate how to use scientific equipment, and the various Working Scientifically skills in order to embed scientific understanding. Teachers find opportunities to develop children’s understanding of their surroundings by accessing outdoor learning and workshops with experts.
Children are offered a wide range of extra-curricular activities, visits, trips and visitors to complement and broaden the curriculum. These are purposeful and link with the knowledge being taught in class.
All class topics are launched with an exciting BIG BANG to engage and enthuse pupils with their forthcoming learning. BIG BANGs will have a Science-theme during topics that are Science based. These may include dressing up, visitors, workshops or use of the outside environment.
Regular events, such as Science Week or project days, such as Nature Day, allow all pupils to come off-timetable, to provide broader provision and the acquisition and application of knowledge and skills. These events often involve families and the wider community.
Bright and engaging Science classroom displays will showcase the topic learning journey. Cross-curricular links will be made, particularly with English, Maths, Computing, Art and Geography. The school’s high expectations for standards in writing and maths will be evident in the pupils writing in Science lessons.
Children are given a weekly opportunity to take part in Forest School activities, where the they learn different skills across the curriculum through outdoor learning.