Sampford Peverell C of E Primary School

Science Curriculum

Science teaching at Sampford Peverell Primary aims to give all children a strong understanding of the world around them whilst acquiring specific skills and knowledge to help them to think scientifically, to gain an understanding of scientific processes and also an understanding of the uses and implications of Science, today and for the future. At our school, scientific enquiry skills are embedded in each topic the children study and these topics are revisited and developed throughout their time at school. Topics, such as Plants, are taught in Key Stage One and studied again in further detail throughout Key Stage Two, demonstrating our intent for excellence in recall and scaffolded learning. This model allows children to build upon their prior knowledge and increases their enthusiasm for the topics whilst embedding this procedural knowledge into the long-term memory. We intend for children to develop and use a range of skills including observations, planning and investigations, as well as our aim to encourage children to question the world around them and become independent learners in exploring possible answers for their scientific based questions. The staff at our school aim to have all children exposed to high quality teaching and learning experiences. 

Through our planning, using the Ventrus Knowledge Entitlement Document, we involve problem-solving opportunities. Children are encouraged to ask their own questions and be given opportunities to use their scientific skills and research to discover the answers. This curiosity is celebrated within the classroom through our learning powers. Planning involves teachers creating engaging lessons, often involving high-quality resources to aid understanding of conceptual knowledge. Teachers use precise questioning in class to test conceptual knowledge and skills, and assess children regularly to identify those children with gaps in learning, so that all children keep up.

Scientific thinking is encouraged from the earliest opportunity in the EYFS. Exploration of plants, animals and the world around is embedded in our outdoor learning; children play with resources such as pipettes, magnifying glasses, seeds, measuring cylinders, weighing scales and more to expose them to scientific concepts that utilise these tools. We describe our children as ‘scientists’ when they seek answers to questions through experiments and discovery so that they experience the role ready for further up the school.

In KS1 and KS2, specialist vocabulary for topics is taught and built up, and effective questioning to communicate ideas is encouraged. Concepts taught should be reinforced by focusing on the key features of scientific enquiry, so that pupils learn to use a variety of approaches to answer relevant scientific questions. 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, collating and interpreting results, they become increasingly confident in their growing ability to come to conclusions based on real evidence.

‘Working Scientifically’ skills are embedded into lessons to ensure these skills are being developed throughout the children’s school career and new vocabulary and challenging concepts are introduced through direct teaching. Children are offered a wide 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.

Science is celebrated in British Science Week where classes have the opportunity to conduct experiments and record findings, exploring STEM activities to ignite their interests. This creates excitement and enthusiasm for the subject which hopefully encourages them to think about their further education and future employment.

The impact and measure of this is to ensure children not only acquire the appropriate age-related knowledge linked to the science curriculum, but also skills which equip them to progress from their starting points, and within their everyday lives.

The impact of our science curriculum is that all children will have:

  • A wider variety of skills linked to both scientific knowledge and understanding, and scientific enquiry/investigative skills
  • A richer vocabulary which will enable to articulate their understanding of taught concepts.
  • High aspirations, which will see them through to further study, work and a successful adult life.