At Hunsbury Park Primary School, we recognise the importance of science in everyday life. Our Science curriculum is aspirational, knowledge-rich, diverse and inclusive.
Our goal for science is for our children to be curious about the world and understand how it affects their everyday lives. We endeavour to foster children’s natural desire to be inquisitive, question why things happen and understand the way things work, enabling a deep understanding of the world they live in. We develop this through the key concepts of Investigation, Observation and Cause and Consequence.
As scientists, children will acquire key scientific knowledge (both substantive and disciplinary) through practical scientific enquiries, wherever possible, and we endeavour to develop children’s understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science through the scientific enquiries of:
- fair testing
- identifying and classifying
- observing over time
- pattern seeking
We strive for our children to understand the role and importance of scientists in our society. We want them to use the knowledge and enquiry skills they gain to help guide their choices in the future, ensure that they are ready for Secondary School and beyond and understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future. Therefore, they will be able to make confident, meaningful links between their learning, the wider curriculum and the real world.
Science has been carefully planned following the National Curriculum. It is an ambitious, knowledge-rich curriculum that is carefully constructed to ensure children develop a solid understanding of scientific concepts and knowledge.
Content is specified in detail and is sequenced in such a way that it is taught to be remembered and not just encountered, with retrieval opportunities built in to every lesson. Children make use of knowledge organisers for each unit which outline the key knowledge and the vocabulary that will be explicitly taught in a particular unit of work. These are also sent home to inform parents and enable them to support with their children’s knowledge development and help them to remember more.
Children are encouraged to work as scientists, ask their own questions, plan their own investigations and are given opportunities to use their scientific skills and research to discover answers and come to their own conclusions. Children are also encouraged to critically evaluate their enquiries and findings.
Our curriculum ensures progression of substantive and disciplinary knowledge, building sequentially on prior knowledge in small steps, and incorporates explicit horizontal links across a year group, vertical links where knowledge and understanding are built upon from previous units and diagonal links across the wider curriculum.
Pupils obtain a solid understanding of key scientific concepts and knowledge which enables them to make meaningful links between scientific concepts, the wider curriculum and the real world. Specific science vocabulary is explicitly taught throughout our curriculum and is sequenced to ensure their understanding of scientific vocabulary builds and develops over time.
Throughout all science units, children work scientifically to develop their understanding of practical methods, process and skills, continually relating them to the key substantive science knowledge that is taught.
At Hunsbury Park, science is taught by teachers with good subject knowledge and an understanding of the need to incorporate and develop the use of scientific skills. We aim to deepen the children’s understanding of all concepts and knowledge using scientific enquiries to embed this knowledge fully. Therefore, there is a clear understanding of the progression of skills and where the children are, where they need to be and how they can be further extended and challenged.
Children are enthusiastic to find out more about the world around them and have a natural curiosity to find out even more. Children can talk about their learning in science and the skills they have used to gain this understanding. Monitoring and pupil voice take place in order to gain an insight into what is happening across the school in science. It also enables the children to have a voice in order to show their perceptions, understanding and knowledge of science.
Science is promoted and is evident throughout the school with science displays, promotion of British Science Week and links within outdoor learning during Forest School sessions.
At the end of our science curriculum, pupils will have a secure understanding of scientific concepts and knowledge and be able to make meaningful links between their science learning, the wider curriculum and the world around them. Pupils will have well-developed enquiry and investigative skills which enable them to think critically, ask questions, evaluate evidence and draw relevant conclusions. Pupils will understand how science affects their everyday lives and will have developed a sense of responsibility for the world they live in.
The impact of our curriculum will be assessed and measures through a variety of methods including:
- weekly retrieval practice
- skilful questioning in lessons
- low stakes quizzes
- formative assessment of work and lesson outcomes
- learning walks
- book monitoring
- professional dialogue
- pupil and staff voice
- summative teacher assessments against end of year and phase end points.
SEND AND DISADVANTAGED PUPILS
At Hunsbury Park, we are an inclusive school who consider ways of minimising and reducing barriers so that all pupils are included and can achieve. The areas where we consider varying approaches and adaptations include: maintaining an inclusive learning environment, using multi-sensory approaches (including ICT), working with additional adults, ensuring appropriate scaffolding of tasks, managing peer relationships through particular groupings, using a wide range of recording methods, ensuring clear communication for all needs, and allowing for formative assessment by ensuring learning objectives and outcomes are understood by all children and assessment methods are wide ranging so not reliant on writing ability. At the same time, work and sentence level skills are practised and developed through science which impacts on children’s writing achievements.
How Does Science Promote British Values?
We strive to promote British Vales in science lessons at Hunsbury Park. When taking ownership of their scientific investigations, children can express their opinions about a theory or hypothesis, enabling them their individual liberty. Oracy is also promoted to enable children to articulate their thinking using scientific concepts. We remind children of the need to establish a firm set of rules when undertaking any scientific enquiries, particularly those that are of a practical nature, so as to ensure the safety of others. This also helps them to develop their understanding of fair testing.
Hunsbury Park Primary School has respect for democracy and the right of all children to have their voices heard. Children are encouraged to be mutually respectful of others when offering their viewpoints, ideas or suggestions for an investigation or a hypothesis. They are encouraged to weigh up both sides of an argument and provide a reasoned response that supports their own ideas.
We introduce the children to famous scientists, such as Darwin and Carl Linnaeus in Phase 3. We consider how these people have been influential in the development of new technologies and research and how all of these have contributed so positively to life in modern Britain.