Welcome to our Science Page!
The National Curriculum for sciences 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 knowledge require to understand the uses of and implications of science, today and for the future.
At Halfway Houses Primary School, we believe that science will lead to a better understanding of ourselves and the world we live in enabling children to think critically and use existing knowledge and skills to further problem solve. It provides opportunities to appreciate scientific facts and concepts and to experience scientific discovery and utilizes skills and knowledge from other curricular areas. Science at Halfway Houses Primary School is about developing children’s ideas and ways of working that enable us to make sense of the world in which they live through investigation, as well as using and applying process skills. In addition, this promotes moral development by showing children that different opinions should be respected and valued.
At Halfway Houses Primary we aim:
- To engage children as learners at many levels through linking ideas with practical experience.
- To engender a “can do attitude” and enjoyment of science making relevant links to the way the science impacts upon daily life.
- To develop a positive attitude towards Science and an awareness of its fascination
- To help children to learn to question and discuss scientific issues that may affect their own lives.
- To help children develop, model and evaluate explanations through scientific methods of collecting evidence using critical and creative thought.
- To show children how major scientific ideas contribute to technological change and how this impacts on improving the quality of our everyday lives.
- To help children recognise the cultural significance of science and trace its development.
- To increase the child’s knowledge and understanding of the world.
- To develop attitudes of curiosity, originality, co-operation, perseverance, open-mindedness, self-criticism, responsibility and independence in thinking.
- To enable children to effectively and confidently communicate their scientific predictions and discoveries as they are given the opportunity to observe, describe, illustrate, hypothesise, evaluate and interpret, using appropriate scientific vocabulary.
- To develop children’s understanding of the effects of their actions on the environment.
- To stress the need for personal and group safety by the correct usage and storage of resources.
- To enable children to appreciate that we do not always know the answers and results when carrying out scientific enquiry.
At Halfway Houses Primary School, we have analysed our pupils’ backgrounds and life experiences and thus have crafted our curriculum to develop children’s confidence, speaking and listening skills, problem solving and thinking as well as providing opportunities for reading, writing and numeracy within a context to further develop these skills. Science stimulates and satisfies children’s natural curiosity because science links directly to practical experience and thus it can engage learners at many levels supporting social development by exposing children to the power of collaborative working both in their work and the scientific community.
Scientific method is about developing and evaluating explanations through experimental evidence and modelling. A high-quality Science education provides foundations for understanding the world. Science has changed our lives and is vital to the world’s future prosperity. Through building key foundational knowledge and concepts, pupils should be encouraged to recognise the power of rational explanation and develop a sense of excitement and curiosity about natural phenomena. They should be encouraged to understand how key knowledge and concepts can be used to explain what is occurring, predict how things will behave, and analyse causes. This understanding is consolidated through their appreciation of applications of Science in society and the economy and thus supports their cultural development also.
In order to support a broad science curriculum, teachers carefully plan and prepare learning activities to allow children to experience a wide range of scientific activities as described in the implementation below. We use the Kent Scheme to ensure that children’s scientific experiences and broken down into units for chemistry, physics and biology. It is essential for our pupils that they experience success within the subject and it is important to develop skills, knowledge, understanding and resilience. In addition, we also undertake science week which includes Red Cross First Aid training and hold a science fair.
Science is not just a question of knowing facts and understanding concepts. It is also about encouraging children to behave scientifically (posing questions to be investigated, hypothesising, recording and analysing). At Halfway Houses Primary School, teachers aim to present science in practical contexts which are relevant to the children's experiences. This will involve learning in class, group and individual situations. Some content is taught directly, but enlivened through practical demonstrations. Small group activities follow on from class discussion and encourage collaboration. Where possible, children are encouraged to investigate their own questions, making decisions for themselves and maintaining a high level of motivation. Children communicate their findings in a variety of ways such as drama, written reports, tables, short talks and demonstrations.
Science is celebrated around the school through displays of work, materials and objects. We use cross-curricula links to science with, for example, design and technology. We develop science informally through Forest Schools, school visits and other out of school activities. We aim to teach science in ways that are imaginative, purposeful, well managed and enjoyable. Teachers will give clear and accurate explanations and offer skilful questioning, whilst making links between science and other subjects in order to further stimulate curiosity and understanding. In addition, the practical nature of science is recognised and opportunities for learning through play and first-hand experience are provided, especially in the early years. Science plays an important role in the development of investigative skills and draws upon strong mathematical links, for example measurement, pattern recognition, graphical skills and data handling. Curricula links to other areas, for example, language, are also recognised and developed.
Science supports spiritual development by providing opportunities for children to think and spend time reflecting on the amazing wonders that occur in the natural world.
Science supports moral development by showing children that different opinions need to be respected and valued. There are many moral and ethical issues that we cover in science including discussions about environmental and human issues.
Children work collaboratively within the classroom however on a greater level children consider the power of collaborative working in the science community which have led to life changing breakthroughs in medicine.
Science is an ambassador for cultural development by looking at how scientists from a range of cultures have had a significant impact globally and in addition helps children to understand that science is a vital to the economy and culture of the UK and beyond.
Health and Safety:
At Halfway Houses Primary School all children will be made explicitly aware of the relevance of health and safety issues when undertaking scientific work. This will be specifically highlighted when they are asked to undertake scientific investigations, with additional adults being used effectively to assist with the safe running of all science lessons. Particular attention must be given to avoiding the use of anything that aggravates individual pupils’ allergies.
Each topic covered within the school science curriculum has its own resource box in the science stock. There is also generic science equipment within the storage area in the Art and Design room. Equipment will be updated as required, within the allocated science budget.
Children will be given opportunities to apply and develop their ICT capability throughout their science lessons, through the use of science/ICT software, allowing them to utilise equipment such as data loggers and microscopes, as well as graph and chart software, and the internet.
Early Years Foundation Stage:
Children will be introduced to science through the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Curriculum Guidance. The Early Learning Goals (ELGs) for ‘Knowledge and Understanding of the World’ forms the foundation for later work in Science, (Design and Technology, History, Geography and ICT). Wherever possible the children are provided with activities based on first-hand experience that encourage exploration, observation, problem solving, prediction, critical thinking, decision making and discussion. We provide an environment with a wide range of indoor and outdoor experiences that stimulate their interest and curiosity. Children are provided with a broad range of opportunities and experiences in science, enabling them to work towards their early learning goals. Children develop their understanding of the world around them on a daily basis, using their senses to explore and learn about objects and materials. They are given holistic learning experiences, incorporating elements of science in their everyday activities.
Key Stage 1:
At Halfway Houses Primary School, children observe, explore and ask questions about living things, materials and physical phenomena. They begin to work together to collect evidence to help them answer questions and to link this to simple scientific ideas. They begin to evaluate evidence and consider whether tests or comparisons are preparing for the future in a caring environment. Children use reference materials including ICT to find out more about scientific ideas. They share ideas and communicate them using scientific language, drawings, charts and tables with the help of ICT where appropriate. The KS1 curriculum follows the Kent Scheme for Science units, ensuring all areas of the Programme of Study are covered across both Years 1 and 2. Children further develop their understanding of the world around them which they have gained in the Foundation Stage. Children are able to observe, explore and ask questions about living things, materials and physical phenomena. Children begin to work collaboratively with others, enabling them to develop their scientific knowledge and understanding and to link scientific concepts. Children communicate ideas orally using taught scientific language and begin to develop written methods for communicating their ideas (to include drawings, diagrams, use of ICT, tables and charts).
Key Stage 2:
Children learn about a wider range of living things, materials and physical phenomena. They make links between ideas and explain things using simple models and theories. They apply their knowledge and understanding of scientific ideas to familiar phenomena, everyday things and their personal health. They think about the effects of scientific and technological developments on the environment and in other contexts. They carry out more systematic investigations, working on their own and with others. They use a range of reference sources including ICT in their work. They talk about their work and its significances, using a wide range of scientific language, conventional diagrams, charts, graphs and ICT to communicate their ideas. The KS2 curriculum follows the Kent Scheme for Science units, ensuring all areas of the Programme of Study are covered across Years 3, 4, 5 and 6. Children learn, explore and ask questions about a wider range of living things, materials and physical phenomena. Children think about the impact of scientific developments and technologies on themselves and the world around them. Children are encouraged to develop an independent approach to their science learning, through asking questions, suggesting improvements to their work and supporting each other towards achieving a heightened understanding of scientific concepts. SC1 is promoted across KS2 with children being given the opportunity to plan, carry out and evaluate experiments. Children are given opportunities to develop different methods for presenting and recording their ideas (to include drawings, diagrams, use of ICT, tables and charts).
All learners are given opportunities to explain their understanding and apply it within contexts and experiments. Deep learning needs time to develop, and so that ideas can be recalled key ideas are revisited to serve as a memory platform. Lessons try to follow the path of knowing concepts, using and applying these ideas and then reasoning in a scientific way during and after investigations and experiments.
More-able learners will be identified as part of our formative and summative assessment procedures. We will provide for their needs through a framework of high quality first teaching which focuses on ensuring the children are challenged appropriately. In addition, we will focus on developing their learning behaviours, including, greater reflection, problem solving and enquiry, making connections, higher order thinking skills and independent learning.
The Role of the Science Subject Leader:
At Halfway Houses Primary School the science subject leader will:
- Ensure the development of a scheme of work for the science curriculum.
- Promote the integration of science within appropriate teaching and learning activities.
- Manage the provision and deployment of resources and give guidance on classroom organisation support.
- Inspire colleagues to deliver high quality teaching and learning opportunities.
- Lead INSET within the school, and investigate suitable courses elsewhere.
- Act as a contact point between the school and support agencies, including the LA.
- Analyse data to identify strengths and weaknesses in outcomes; planning for improvement accordingly.
- Write, monitor and evaluate an action plan for science and for the School Improvement Plan.
- Lead the evaluation and review of the school’s science policy.
- Bid for and manage the budget for this curriculum area.
- Monitor and review the Science provision within the school.
A range of assessment techniques will be used depending on the nature of the lesson, knowledge acquired or the process skills used at Minster Primary School. Children may be assessed through close teacher observation or discussion and sometimes small tests or problem solving tasks may be set. Science will be assessed in line with the Halfway Houses assessment policy using O track and the Curriculum Subject Assessment Books as a record of children’s achievements. Information gained from pupil records, initial assessment tasks and discussions will be used to plan activities. Assessment will take place termly assessing AT1 (investigatory strand) and the knowledge and understanding strands of the science curriculum. Records will be kept on individual achievement, via the school’s tracking system. Teachers will assess children’s understanding of each topic as work is being taught. Informal assessment occurs throughout every lesson through discussion and evaluation of the children’s work and understanding. This enables teachers to check that children have grasped the main teaching focus of each lesson.
- Every year we have a fantastic science week which is full of explosive learning. Each year the theme is different which is what our learning is based around. We have been involved in engineering competitions, experiments and had visitors into the school.
- We host an amazing science fair which is open to all year groups. Every child has the opportunity to create their own science experiment with a parent/carer and bring it into the fair to show off what they have created. The winners are chosen to then join our Island Science Fair where winners from schools from across the Island come and join us. The prizes are amazing and we ask a special guest to come and judge.
Hands On Science
- At Halfway Houses we encourage and promote hands on science. The children get involved in a range of different experiments and investigations to encourage them to think scientifically. We also use the outside space to teach our lessons and for the children to explore as part of their science learning.
We have an amazing Forest School where we like to use for our science learning.
Take a look at our Forest School page to see what we have been up to - click on the image below.
How can I help my child with their Science learning?
Here are some questions that you could ask your child.
Have you done any interesting experiments?
What did you learn from doing the experiment?
If you could invent something what would it be?
Can you tell me about a scientist that you have learned about?
What scientific words do you know?
What skills have you used in science?
Why do we learn about science?
How do you think science will help you in the future?
Can you tell me about a way science has changed the world?
Can you tell me about any famous scientists?