The National Curriculum for science 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 skills required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future. We understand that it is important for lessons to have a skills-based focus, and that the knowledge can be taught through this.
At Thornaby Church of England Primary School we encourage children to be inquisitive throughout their time at the school and beyond. The Science curriculum fosters a healthy curiosity in children about our universe and promotes respect for the living and non-living. We believe science encompasses the acquisition of knowledge, concepts, skills and positive attitudes. Throughout the programmes of study, the children will acquire and develop the key knowledge that has been identified within each unit and across each year group, as well as the application of scientific skills. We ensure that the Working Scientifically skills are built-on and developed throughout children’s time at the school so that they can apply their knowledge of science when using equipment, conducting experiments, building arguments and explaining concepts confidently and continue to ask questions and be curious about their surroundings.
Teachers create a positive attitude to science learning within their classrooms and reinforce an expectation that all pupils are capable of achieving high standards in science. Our whole school approach to the teaching and learning of science involves the following;
• Science will be taught in EYFS and KS1 in planned and arranged Cornerstones topic blocks. In LKS2 and UKS2 pupils will engage in science through discreet lessons and through topic to enable full coverage and increase the achievement of a greater depth of knowledge.
• Through our planning, we involve problem solving opportunities that allow children to apply their knowledge, and find out answers for themselves. Children are encouraged to ask their own questions and be given opportunities to use their scientific skills and research to discover the answers. Teachers use precise questioning in class to test conceptual knowledge and skills, and assess pupils regularly to identify those children with gaps in learning, so that all pupils keep up.
• We build upon the knowledge and skill development of the previous years. As the children’s knowledge and understanding increases, and they become more proficient.
The successful approach at Thornaby Church of England Primary results in a fun, engaging, high-quality science education, that provides children with the foundations and knowledge for understanding the world. Our engagement with the local environment ensures that children learn through varied and first hand experiences of the world around them. Frequent, continuous and progressive learning outside the classroom is embedded throughout the science curriculum. Through various workshops, trips and interactions and participation in a whole school STEM week, children have the understanding that science has changed our lives and that it is vital to the world’s future prosperity. Children learn the possibilities for careers in science, as a result of our community links and connection with national agencies such as the STEM association, Middlesbrough Football club and Inspire 2 Learn Teesside enable children to learn from and work with professionals, ensuring that children have access to positive role models within the field of science from the immediate and wider local community. Children at Thornaby Church of England Primary overwhelmingly enjoy science and this results in motivated learners with sound scientific understanding.