Beech Grove

Science

We follow a two year rolling programme in science. Please follow the links below to see an overview of our science curriculum. Our curriculum has been carefully sequenced to ensure pupils are building on their prior knowledge and are well prepared for future learning. Our progression documents provide a detailed overview of how pupils' learning has been sequenced. 

Year A OverviewYear B Overview 

Science Knowledge MatricesWorking Scientifically Progression 

INTENT

At Beech Grove Primary School, our high-quality science curriculum provides the foundations for understanding the world through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics.

Science has changed our lives and is vital to the world’s future prosperity. We believe that all pupils should be taught essential aspects of the knowledge, methods, processes and uses of science. Through building up a body of 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.

Pupils should be encouraged to understand how science can be used to explain what is occurring, predict how things will behave, and analyse causes.

We believe that science teaching is effective when:

  • pupils work collaboratively together
  • scientific discovery is purposeful and child led through the development of questioning skills
  • pupils draw conclusions from their own observations and measurements
  • pupils discuss scientifically
  • pupils are ‘doing’ and teachers talk less
  • pupils learn about the world around them using the school site, local area and science in the news
  • pupils are engaged in scientific enquiry through pattern seeking, classifying and identifying, exploring and developing systems, investigating and making models and by testing fairly
  • pupils can describe their own progress in science
  • assessment is gathered through observations and discussions with pupils

 

IMPLEMENTATION

Science is taught in discrete lessons for at least 1 hour 15 minutes a week in key stage one, and 2 hours a week in key stage two.

Our curriculum is based upon the Kent Science Scheme of Learning. This scheme ensures that the 2014 Primary National Curriculum Framework is taught at the correct stage while ensuring clear progression in knowledge and skills. 

Our 'knowledge matrices' support teachers' subject knowledge and understanding of the prior learning pupils should have secured within each year group. 

We place a great deal of importance on the teaching of scientific vocabulary. Each unit of work outlines the key vocabulary which will be explicitly taught and revisited throughout the unit, as well as displayed on the science working wall.

A third of the way through a unit of work, teachers carry out a 'TAPS' (Teacher Assessment in Primary Science) task. This is a practical, scientific activity or enquiry that the children complete, which focuses on one aspect of working scientifically. Taking one focus at a time means that assessing science, including practical work, becomes more manageable with a whole class. A focused assessment increases the validity of teacher judgments. The TAPS assessment indicators, provide suggestions about what the children might do or say to demonstrate their understanding or knowledge in the context of real classroom activities. This clear focus on an element of science reduces the possible impact of preconceptions about individual children or their skills in other areas, such as writing. Over time, the full range of children’s science enquiry skills and understanding of science can be considered in depth.

At the end of each unit of work, teachers assess pupils against the objectives for that unit. Each child is recorded as either working 'below', 'at' or 'above' age related expectations. This assessment information is used to inform future teaching. 

Science provides excellent opportunities to enhance the learning of our more able pupils through: asking them to plan their own lines of enquiry; solve open ended problems; analyse results and draw conclusions based on scientific findings. Beech Grove Primary School is part of a science cluster of Wellington schools where enrichment opportunities for our more able pupils are planned. 

Staff are involved in ongoing CPD where they are given dedicated time either termly or half termly to complete an online training session for the unit they will be teaching next. We believe that ongoing CPD is essential for effective teaching and learning. It supports staff confidence in delivering high quality, practical science which helps pupils to know more and remember more. 

Our termly ‘enrichment weeks’ and annual, whole school science week, further inspire the children with their science learning as well as provide a valuable opportunity to reinforce key knowledge and skills. 

A range of visits and visitors, for example, Exmoor Zoo, @Bristol, Wonderstruck Science and visits from people who have a science based career, further enrich our science curriculum and ensure it is connected to the real world. 

 

   Nurturing our duck eggs 


IMPACT

Our successful approach at Beech Grove 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 for example through our weekly 'Welly Walks', and visits to Wellington Park. 

Through various workshops, trips and interactions with experts and local charities, 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 including the STEM association. They learn from and work with professionals, ensuring access to positive role models within the field of science from the immediate and wider local community. From this exposure to a range of different scientists from various backgrounds, all children feel they are scientists and capable of achieving.

Children at Beech Grove overwhelmingly enjoy science and this results in motivated learners with sound scientific understanding. A high proportion of pupils reach age related expectations by the end of Year 6.