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Science

Intent

At Westfield, we aim to develop and support our children’s curiosity and understanding of the world around them, at school and beyond.   We recognise the importance of Science in every aspect of daily life.   Through our Science teaching, we aim to increase pupil’s knowledge and understanding of the world and to develop their Science enquiry skills. This will help to foster a healthy curiosity in children about our universe, encourage respect for the living and non-living and to provide opportunities to critically evaluate evidence.

At Westfield, we develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through our teaching of all three strands of Science: Biology, Chemistry, Physics.  We believe an enquiry-based approach helps them to develop their understanding of the nature, processes and methods of Science and helps them to answer their scientific questions of the world around them.  We help children develop scientific enquiry skills such as observation, predicting, analysing and evaluating which helps them to understand how science can be used to explain what is occurring, predict how things will behave, and analyse causes.  We want our children to be equipped with the knowledge to understand the implications of Science, today and for the future.  Above all, we want children to develop an enjoyment and enthusiasm for scientific learning and discovery and to provide them with knowledge and skills, to build on their natural curiosity.     

Implementation

Teachers create a positive attitude to Science learning, having high expectations for our children and encouraging curiosity and enthusiasm for their Science learning.  Our curriculum is progressive throughout the whole school.  

Teaching and Learning

At Westfield, Science is taught weekly throughout Key Stage 1 and 2. In Early Years, Science is taught through children learning about the world around them in learning through play.  Additional opportunities are provided through Science days, trips or visits as well as Science clubs run by our Science Ambassadors. 

Planning for Science is a process in which all teachers are involved to ensure that the school gives full coverage of the “National Curriculum” and “Understanding of the World” in the Early Years Foundation Stage.     Teachers adapt the curriculum to match all pupils’ needs.    Science is taught as a discrete subject to ensure coverage although we try to make cross cross-curricular links where possible, for example writing in English and tables and graphs in Maths.  

We build on the previous knowledge and skills of the previous years through our progression maps.  This feeds into the each year groups long-term plans.  As the children’s understanding and knowledge increases they become more proficient in selecting, using scientific equipment and collating and interpreting results. They also develop the ability to come to conclusions based on real evidence, and can offer ideas on how they could improve or extend next time. 

Teachers have access to high quality resources to help support their planning and this gives a good starting point for them to adapt for the needs of their class.   They make use of Explorify as starters to encourage questioning and wonder.    Through our planning, we encourage children to ask their own questions and give them the opportunities to use their scientific skills to research these and to discover the answers.   Teacher questioning is used to illicit understanding and clarify misconceptions. Children are encouraged to be independent and take care of the equipment that they use.  

Working Scientifically skills are embedded through the lessons and develop over time.  To ensure that the children understand the scientific skills that they are using we have introduced Science wheels that outline the different Scientifc skills; teachers refer to these during lessons to ensure that as well as the knowledge they have acquired they are also aware of the skills used to acquire that knowledge.

Learning Journeys are used to help children to understand the overall objective of the unit and to show children how different strands are connected. 

Assessment

Teachers use questions and observations during the lesson to assess understanding and this informs subsequent lessons.   Teachers will also use books to assess the children’s understanding, knowledge and ability to apply the skills that they have learned.  Again, this informs future lesson plans or focus areas.

The Science Coordinator will conduct learning walks, book reviews and pupil voice to ensure the overview of coverage and to ascertain pupils’ views of Science.    

Impact

Our Science Curriculum is well thought out and planned to show progression.  As well as having the knowledge linked to the curriculum, children should acquire skills which they can continue to develop as they move beyond the primary setting.    Our hope is that providing them with an engaging curriculum they will enjoy Science and understand its role in the world.  

All children will:

–        Develop a range of different skills linked to scientific knowledge and understanding.    

–        Be able and confident to be able to find a way to answer their questions.

–        Be keen to ask questions and critically evaluate the world around them.

–        Have a richer scientific vocabulary so that they can articulate and explain their thoughts and understanding of different concepts.

–        Have an understanding of the importance of Science to them.

We will measure this through:

–        Written outcomes in books

–        Oral explanations, questions and discussions in class.

–        Pupils’ discussion about their learning.

To view the whole school science curriculum map, please download the document here: