Science Curriculum Statement
The 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 their future. We understand that it is important for lessons to have a skills-based focus, and that the knowledge can be taught through this
At Willow Brook, we encourage children to be inquisitive and curious. The science curriculum fosters a healthy sense of wonder about our universe and promotes respect for the living and non-living. It is also designed to develop the acquisition of knowledge, concepts, skills and positive attitudes. The key knowledge identified by each year group is informed by the national curriculum and intentionally revisits and builds to the end goals. Key skills are also mapped for each year group and are systematic and progressive throughout the school. Our intention is to ensure that children are able to acquire scientific knowledge through practical and theoretical experiences. They have access to scientific equipment and carry out investigations that give them the evidence they need to build concepts and adjust their knowledge and understanding. The Willow Brook environment offers ample opportunity to provide a rich programme of outdoor learning. The development of an outdoor classroom by our brook, provides opportunity for children of all ages to see important elements of primary science in action. Cross curricular opportunities and whole school projects are also mapped and planned to ensure contextual relevance and wider opportunities. Our community contacts (with Rolls Royce and the British Geological Survey) add inspiring resources to our curriculum and trips into the wider locality (to the Space Museum, Twycross Zoo and Woolsthorpe Manor, for example) to stimulate bright young minds. Knowledge, experience and experimentation must all combine to make this area of the curriculum successful.
Teachers create a positive and ambitious attitude to science learning within their classrooms and reinforce an expectation that all pupils are capable of achieving high standards in science. Through discreet science lessons and STEM investigations we ensure that
- Science will be taught in planned and arranged half termly blocks by the class teacher
- Existing knowledge is revised at the beginning of each topic and teaching is informed by the children’s starting points and takes account of the progression map that shows where subject matter has been previously covered
- Through careful planning, teachers ensure that children are given frequent opportunities to wonder, investigate and problem solve. They are encouraged to see, think and apply their knowledge to reach logical conclusions for themselves
- Discreet knowledge is delivered with accuracy through well planned, engaging lessons. Whilst the Outstanding Science resources are used to reinforce aims and content, other high-quality resources should be used to aid understanding of conceptual knowledge. Precise questioning in class will test and assess pupils regularly to identify those children with gaps in learning, so that all pupils keep up. Tasks are designed to provide appropriate challenge to all learners and work in line with the school’s commitment to inclusion.
- We build upon the knowledge and skill development of the previous years. As the children’s knowledge and understanding increases, they become more proficient in selecting, using scientific equipment, collating and interpreting results, they become increasingly confident in their ability to come to conclusions based on real evidence. This should be evident in their work.
Children are offered a 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.
- Whole-school events, such as Science Week or project days encourage learners of all ages to focus on this core subject and get involved in exciting projects. These events often involve families and experts from the wider community
- At the end of each topic, key knowledge is reviewed and assessed. Regular work scrutiny ensures that our aims and goals are achieved.
Willow Brook aims to deliver an engaging, high-quality science education that provides children with the foundations and knowledge to understand the world in which they live. Engagement with the environment ensures that children learn through varied and first hand experiences. Our aim is that children develop an understanding that science has changed our lives and that it is vital to the world’s future. They will understand the contribution of key scientists and historical figures.
Opportunities are engineered to show all children the possibilities for careers in science, as a result of our community links and connection with national agencies. They learn from professionals and positive role models within the field of science from the immediate and wider local community.
When they move to the next stage of their education, children should be equipped and enthusiastic and confident in the knowledge that a future career in the field of science and technology is well within their grasp.
Our plans show how themes are repeated to deepen and broaden experience and understanding. They also demonstrate the important skills of enquiry that enable scientists to test theories and record their observations.
Science Planning – the building of knowledge
Science – progression of key enquiry skills
Willow Brook Science – links to topic areas