Science Curriculum Statement of intent
Our 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 knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future
Scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding
Our curriculum overview describes a sequence of knowledge and concepts. While it is important that pupils make progress, it is also vitally important that they develop secure understanding of each key block of knowledge and concepts in order to progress to the next stage. Insecure, superficial understanding will not allow genuine progression: pupils may struggle at key points of transition (such as between primary and secondary school), build up serious misconceptions, and/or have significant difficulties in understanding higher-order content.
Pupils should be able to describe associated processes and key characteristics in common language, but they should also be familiar with, and use, technical terminology accurately and precisely. They should build up an extended specialist vocabulary. They should also apply their mathematical knowledge to their understanding of science, including collecting, presenting and analysing data. The social, economic and environmental implications of science are important, for example in developing understanding of how science is used in agriculture or the science behind climate change. Teachers will wish to use different contexts to maximise their pupils’ engagement with and motivation to study science.
The nature, processes and methods of science
‘Working scientifically’ is embedded within the content of biology, chemistry and physics, focusing on the key features of scientific enquiry, so that pupils learn to use a variety of approaches to answer relevant scientific questions. These types of scientific enquiry include: observing over time; pattern seeking; identifying, classifying and grouping; comparative and fair testing (controlled investigations); and researching using secondary sources. Pupils seek answers to questions through collecting, analysing and presenting data. Throughout investigations, children will be taught how to carry these out safely.
We believe in the importance of spoken language in pupils’ development across the whole curriculum – cognitively, socially and linguistically. The quality and variety of language that pupils hear and speak are key factors in developing their scientific vocabulary and articulating scientific concepts clearly and precisely. They must be assisted in making their thinking clear, both to themselves and others, and teachers should ensure that pupils build secure foundations by using discussion to probe and remedy their misconceptions
Promoting our school motto and The Carey Qualities
Our curriculum for science is ambitious and challenging so enables children to ‘Aim High’. Children are encouraged to ‘Build Relationships’ during group practical activities where team work, listening skills and leadership can be developed. When learning is challenging or investigations don’t work as expected, children will need to ‘Be Resilient’. Through research and investigatory work, children will have opportunities to ‘Be Resourceful’.