The Woodfield Science Curriculum
At Woodfield, we believe that science should be a hands on, engaging and practical experience for all learners. An experience that feeds their natural enthusiasm and curiosity and where children can see that all of their ideas, opinions and questions are valued. Science draws upon other areas of the curriculum and allows links to be made with prior learning, e.g. measuring the distance that a toy car travels down a ramp or writing questions for others to answer using the correct punctuation.
The science curriculum at Woodfield has been planned to ensure that all children are given the opportunity to develop a broad understanding of the world around them. Our science curriculum aims to develop an enquiring mind in all children and, while engaging in the broad science curriculum on offer, the children will acquire 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. The children will also become familiar with the different types of scientific enquiry that are used to explore the world around them in a scientific way.
Throughout all of the science curriculum, children are expected to use our ‘Learning Powers’. For example, in investigations the children will need to use co-operative learning with the equipment that they need, be resilient if things don’t quite go as planned and be reflective about how they have worked as a scientist to continuously improve. By employing our ‘Learning Powers’ in science, as we do throughout the curriculum, we aim for the children to become independent learners and to be able to explore the possible answers for their scientific based questions.
We endeavour to ensure that the Science curriculum we provide will give children the confidence, enthusiasm and motivation to continue to further develop their scientific skills into the next stage of their education.
The Science curriculum at Woodfield has been designed to ensure it links closely to the National Curriculum.
Our curriculum sets out a clear breadth of topics: In EYFS this is rooted in children’s everyday experiences of plants and animals, the environment and observing similarities, differences and patterns. As they move into years one and two plants, animals (including humans), materials, habitats and seasonal change are studied. Our Long Term Plan gives an overview of these topics and our progression document ensures previous learning is built on a deepened year on year.
In order to further enrich and broaden our curriculum, when it is relevant to do so, the children are exposed to areas of science beyond those set out within the KS1 curriculum. For example, we have added learning about the Solar System into our ‘Out of this World’ topic. This ensures our curriculum relates to the everyday world and captures children’s interest.
Our science curriculum is underpinned by key skills in working scientifically. These include pattern seeking, fair test and identifying and classifying investigations. While thinking scientifically, all children are encouraged to develop and use a range of skills including questioning scientifically, making observations, planning and carrying out investigations, as well as being encouraged to question the world around them. Again, our progression document gives an overview of how these skills are built up.
Special Educational Needs and Science
Effective quality first teaching is the key to enabling all children to participate and develop their scientific knowledge and skills. Differentiation within lessons is a vital component to ensure that a balance of support and challenge is achieved by all learners.
Challenge and support specific to science may include:
- Providing practical support for investigations
- First hand experiences
- Pre-teaching of more advance vocabulary
- Providing picture clues or sentence stems
Pupils not secure within a lesson sequence are noted and adjustments made to the differentiation or level of support given. Similarly, added challenge is given to those pupils requiring it. This may be through questioning or the use of written work.
Throughout each lesson formative assessment takes place and feedback is given to the children through written or verbal feedback (in line with our marking policy), close the gap and extension tasks.
In written work, letter formation and grammar is corrected in line with the marking policy and children in Year 2 are encouraged to check and correct their work using purple polishing pens. Through the explicit teaching of scientific enquiry skills, both teachers and learners assess their skills continuously throughout the lesson.
To help children get a deep level of understanding, scientific skills and concepts are revisited, for example in year 1 children will be able to identify, name and compare everyday materials but by revisiting this and discussing their properties and uses in year 2 they will have a deeper level of understanding.
A class investigations floor book is kept and added to across the year and quizzes, book looks, learning walks and pupil voice interviews are used by the subject lead to monitor impact and progression.
End of Key Stage One Expectations
By the end of Key Stage 1, as scientists, children will be able:
- Name different plants and animals and describe how they are suited to different habitats.
- Describe the basic needs of plants for survival and describe the main changes as seeds and bulbs grow into plants.
- Group animals according to what they eat.
- Describe a simple food chain.
- Name parts of the human body and describe the importance of exercise, a balanced diet and hygiene for humans.
- Distinguish objects from materials and describe the properties of materials.
- Describe seasonal changes.