Science at Pomphlett
Rationale- What has informed our curriculum design in science?
Our aim is that super scientists at Pomphlett understand that science is a journey of discovery. They know that scientific knowledge and understanding is continuously evolving; that scientists might NEVER know the complete answer but that they can have a lot of fun exploring the scientific possibilities. Across the curriculum at Pomphlett, we aim to develop children’s cultural capital and local knowledge. In science, this includes looking at the work of key inspirational individuals across a range of scientific fields as well as developing an understanding of current scientific issues both locally and globally.
We aim to inspire Pomphlett students to succeed and excel at science throughout their school life and beyond.
Intent- What are our aims?
At Pomphlett, children will think and work like a scientist in their science lessons. These lessons should be designed to provide opportunities for children to be inquisitive, to wonder, to explore and investigate scientific phenomena and to collaborate together. Hands on, practical lessons, with a strong element of outdoor learning should make science memorable and fun and children should be encouraged to develop increasing independence in asking and answering scientific questions about the world around them.
Implementation – How do we teach science?
Our long term science curriculum is carefully planned using the National Curriculum 2014 and the Essentials Curriculum milestones to map content for each year group, ensuring coverage and progression. Curriculum trackers and knowledge organisers ensure that both knowledge and skills (know that and know how) are explicitly identified and that all teachers are aware of prior learning and next steps.
Working scientifically skills are at the forefront of our science teaching. Enquiry approaches and enquiry skills, including using scientific equipment, are explicitly planned for and taught in lessons with a clear understanding of progression throughout the school. We build upon the learning and skill development of the previous years. As the children’s knowledge and understanding increases, and they become more proficient in selecting and using scientific equipment and collating and interpreting results, they become increasingly confident in their growing ability to come to conclusions based on real evidence.
Science teaching is delivered by class teachers through carefully planned units of work which group science themes alongside other curriculum areas. Knowledge organisers identify the knowledge, vocabulary and disciplinary skills that will be covered in each unit. These knowledge organisers are used both in lessons, and at home, to reinforce learning. Teachers create engaging sequences of carefully planned lessons, drawing from a wide range of high quality sources and resources in order to aid understanding of conceptual and disciplinary knowledge. They create a positive attitude to science learning within their classrooms and reinforce an expectation that all children are capable of achieving high standards in science.
Through our planning, we incorporate problem solving opportunities that allow children to investigate for themselves. Children are encouraged to ask their own questions and are given opportunities to use their scientific skills and research to discover the answers. This curiosity is celebrated within the classroom.
Our curriculum is progressive. We build upon the learning and skill development of the previous years, beginning each unit and lesson with teacher assessments of what children already know in order to inform the learning that follows. Teachers use precise questioning in class to test conceptual knowledge and skills.
Continuous formative assessment identifies those children with gaps in learning, so that all children can fully access the learning. Termly, children also complete a progressive summative assessment based on the objectives for their year group. This provides a clear indication of knowledge retention and conceptual understanding throughout the year.
Working Scientifically skills are also continuously assessed through analysis of what children do and say. Focussed assessment tasks ensure full coverage and progression of working scientifically skills and accurate assessment of these.
Teachers find opportunities to develop children’s understanding of their surroundings by accessing outdoor learning. Trips, both local and further afield, and visitors complement and broaden the curriculum. These are purposeful and link with the knowledge being taught in class. Regular events, such as Science Week provide children with the opportunity to become fully immersed in their science learning. Extra-curricular activities such as ‘First Lego League Challenge,’ provide a fantastic opportunity for children to apply their learning in a variety of contexts.
Impact- How will we know this?
As a result of our science provision at Pomphlett, children will be equipped with the knowledge and skills to investigate the world around them, resulting in learners who are keen and motivated to work as scientists.
In our scientists, we expect to see:
• The ability to think independently and raise questions about working scientifically and the knowledge and skills that it brings.
• Confidence and competence in the full range of practical skills, taking the initiative in, for example, planning and carrying out scientific investigations.
• Excellent scientific knowledge and understanding which is demonstrated in written and verbal explanations, solving challenging problems and reporting scientific findings.
• High levels of originality, imagination or innovation in the application of skills.
• The ability to undertake practical work in a variety of contexts, including fieldwork.
• A passion for science and its application in past, present and future technologies.
They will leave Pomphlett able to build, remember and connect together their knowledge and skills, resulting in motivated learners with sound scientific understanding, who believe they are scientists and are proud of their achievements.
Link to the Essentials Curriculum Milestones for Assessment