We follow the Primary National Curriculum for Science in England.
Science, alongside English and Maths, is a core curriculum subject in England. It’s a subject which is exciting, inspiring, weird, wonderful, messy and, frankly, brilliant to teach. Good Science lessons provide children the opportunity to be hands-on and find out facts about the world around them through practical investigations. A positive grounding in Science at primary school opens many doors to not only understand the different disciplines of this subject at secondary school but to go on and make a significant difference to our world by following it as a career.
Discover more about our Science Curriculum at Springbank from the documents below:
Science Curriculum Statement of Intent
Science helps us understand the world around us. Everything we know about the universe, from how trees reproduce to what an atom is made up of is the result of scientific research and experiment. Indeed, human’s progress throughout history has largely rested on advances in science. The Science curriculum at Springbank is carefully planned and structured to ensure that the core knowledge and disciplinary knowledge being taught are progressive and that the school’s approaches are informed by current pedagogy.
Science starts in Reception with our 'Understanding of the World' area of the EYFS curriculum. It is introduced indirectly through activities which encourage children to explore the natural world around them, such as a Spring walk or a mini-beast hunt. Springbank children will get ‘hands-on’ with Science from the earliest possible age, experimenting with melting ice and using their senses to see, hear and feel. Every child at Springbank is encouraged to dream big – if they want to be an astronaut then we will support them with this dream – and the EYFS Understanding of the World curriculum exposes children to learning about technology and space which they can later build on during their journey as a scientist at our school.
In line with the Key Stage 1 National Curriculum, the curriculum at Springbank aims to ensure that pupils gain firsthand experiences of Science, backed up by theoretical learning from books, videos and images. Science lessons pose questions to children and give them the opportunity to investigate the answer.
By Key Stage 2, children broaden their scientific understanding of the world around them. They are supported to ask their own questions as well as investigate the answers. Children in Key Stage 2 learn about the importance of a fair test and develop observational skills around noticing patterns, recording outcomes and classifying. It is our intent that all children can begin to draw conclusions, using scientific vocabulary, to explain what they find out.
Specialist vocabulary is central to learning in this subject, and we ensure our Science lessons expose children to this. Vocabulary is carefully sequenced throughout each learning journey and over the year groups to ensure children develop a thorough understanding of scientific ideas a concepts. Our commitment to ensure all of our pupils reach their potential in Science is supported by a number of enhancement activities including visitors and MAT-wide STEM events. We want children to feel the ‘Wowfactor’ of Science. Through our Science curriculum, children are able to explore, investigate and immerse themselves in an overall understanding of how and why things work.
Science in the Early Years
In Reception, Science forms part of the Understanding the World strand of the EYFS Framework. Lots of the science your child learns during this foundation year will be through exploring the natural world and identifying changes through games and play. Through observing and asking questions, your child will be challenged to think like a scientist. For example, a Reception scientist will observe, predict and think critically about whether an object floats or sinks in water.
Science in Key Stage 1 (Years 1 & 2) and Key Stage 2 (Years 3, 4 & 5)
The programme of study for Science was set out in the 2014 National Curriculum for primary schools in England. In it, individual topic areas are carefully repeated to build a child’s depth of knowledge and understanding. Let’s take, for example, the topic area of Animals. In Year 1, Springbank children learn about animals, including humans, at a basic level – they gain knowledge on the parts of the human body and learn about the characteristics with which we can compare animals. By Year 6, children are able to describe different animal life cycles, understand the process of reproduction in some plants and animals and describe changes in humans such as old age.
The Science Curriculum overview shows how coverage from the National Curriculum is mapped out across our whole school.
Alongside the programme of study coverage, children at Springbank are taught about ‘working scientifically’ as is also laid out in the National Curriculum. In summary, this element focuses on the skills the children need to become accurate, careful and confident practical scientists. Children are expected to master certain skills in each year group and there is a very clear progression of these set out. For example:
In Year 1 a Springbank child may have to ask questions, carry out a simple test, record simple data and then try to answer questions.
By Year 6, a Springbank child should be able to plan and carry out a fair test by using equipment accurately and taking exact readings or measurements. They are also expected to be able to draw conclusions from their results and record them using a range of graphs and charts.
Supporting Your Child at Home
Find out their termly topics (most schools will provide this information each term, or you can always ask their teacher) and take an interest — find relevant books in the library or bookshop, do some research, brush up your own knowledge about the topic! Then you can have interesting conversations where you are both learning at the same time.
Take a trip
Why not take a trip to a science museum, a zoo or an aquarium? These don’t necessarily need to be completely related to what they are learning about at school. Any visit can help their curiosity and engagement with science generally.
Make it personal
Find out about famous scientists and research unique and exciting inventions up to and including the present day. Who knows, you may have the next Stephen Hawking or Marie Curie at home!
Look up fun, practical science experiments you can do at home with everyday objects.
- Ask ‘What happens when you mix food colouring in milk?’ Then add washing up liquid and watch what happens.
- Why not try making your own mini exploding volcano? Just add bicarbonate of soda, food colouring, washing up liquid and vinegar. Then stand back and watch the eruption!
- Cooking is also a great opportunity to mix ingredients, add heat and examine changing states.
- Try exploring changing states with ice and water to begin to see those changes that can be reversed and those that can’t.
- A real favourite would have to be ‘gloop’ — use water and cornflour (add food colouring too if needed) to explore solids and liquids. Just be prepared to get messy!
- Of course, there are also some wonderful science kits available to buy to push your scientists further – making crystals, rockets and even bouncy balls.
- Anything where they can be hands-on and see the science happen in front of their eyes is guaranteed to be get them interested.