The intent of our Meadowside Science Curriculum is to develop children’s deeper understanding of the way the world works. We want children to recognise that there are three main strands of science (biology, chemistry and physics) and to recognise the value of science in our everyday world. We shape children into inquisitive thinkers who can pose their own questions and have the skills and knowledge to seek ways of answering these questions. We give children the opportunity to learn through practical investigations into science and by learning from the experiences of others.
For each subject, we use an aspirational Golden Thread statement that is important to our school vision and values at Meadowside. We have considered how each subject can help the children in their journey to secondary school and beyond.
Our Meadowside Golden Thread for Science is :
To be able to understand how science can be used to explain what is occurring, predict how things will behave and analyse the causes.
At Meadowside Primary School, we teach science as part of our year group topics, as well as a separate science session specifically on investigative skills. When science lessons form part of our curriculum topic themes, objectives are taken from the National Curriculum and are chosen to help us answer our topic “Key Questions”. These lessons can be practical and skills based or more knowledge based. We have a wide variety of practical equipment which children use to develop their skills and also have strong links to a local secondary school who let us borrow resources that we do not already have. Knowledge based lessons are delivered using a variety of means. Alongside high quality teaching, lessons can include the use of technology for researching, online videos and online gaming software. As science is subject with a large content, progression has been carefully planned so that children are continually building on and extending the skills or subject knowledge they have learnt previously. We have carefully planned the best time to cover certain topics and subject areas each year to give children the opportunity to develop key scientific skills and add to these as they move into the next year groups to prevent any knowledge being lost.
Our investigative sessions have a link to topic themes when appropriate but also provide an opportunity to revisit subject knowledge, extend practical skills or allow children to investigate scientific areas of their own interest that might not otherwise fit directly with the learning of that year group. This supports children’s developing questioning skills while also enriching their scientific experiences. Similarly, children are being given the opportunity to take more of an active role in what they are learning or what they want to learn about.
The children are assessed throughout the year by their class teacher, based on the work being produced in class. Three times a year, the Science subject leader will hold a pupil voice session to moderate the assessment judgements made by the class teacher. This gives our subject leader the chance to see strengths and areas for development in the teaching and learning of Science at Meadowside. With the investigation sessions also taking place, this is an opportunity for class teachers to revisit any areas of science that may need more time to fully embed.
How can I support my child with Science?
Science is happening around us every day! From little things like the weather and why your heart beats faster when you run to bigger concepts like gravity and how sound and light travel. Children are often much more creative and inquisitive than adults and will often pose questions you are not expecting! Do not be afraid to tell your child you don’t know the answer to their question, as parents and adults, children expect us to know everything, but this can never be true! It is important for children to know that even adults are still learning. Instead of telling your child you simply don’t know the answer to their question, endeavour to help them to find it. Teaching your child how they can find an answer to their question is just as valuable to actually knowing the answer. The BBC/CBBC have a lots of brilliant videos on some of the more complex scientific theories that are explained in ways that children can understand. There are even whole science channels for children on YouTube too.
Encourage your child to be curious. Let them ask questions and allow them some time to ponder the answers or possibilities. Ask them questions about what they think might be happening and why. Get them to make predictions and ask them what has made them think this. You can do this for the smallest of concepts. For example – what do you think will happen if we don’t put the ice cream in the freezer? How do you know? Teach your children to be observant. Do they notice anything different about the changing of the weather? The growth of a plant?
Science has close links to other subjects including Technology, Engineering and Maths. You may see these subjects being referred to as STEM subjects. There are lots of things you can do to foster a love of science (and the wider world around us) at home. Here are a few things you might like to do:
- Complete a simple science experiment at home (there is a wealth of different things you might like to try with a quick Google search!) some suggestions for where to start are in the useful websites below.
- Visit the science museum “We the Curious” in Bristol – this gives children a hands on experience to so many different science concepts
- Watch one of Maddie Moate’s videos on YouTubeKids
- Visit the library and get some books about simple science experiments, science concepts or even some recipe books to try out some baking!
- Learn how to use different resources to find an answer to your question – how can computers help us? How can books help us? How might videos and other forms of media help us?
- Learn about the different careers that involve science – scientists are often portrayed as wild haired white coat wearing men holding test tubes, prove this stereotype wrong by investigating what a “real” scientist looks like and what careers they do!
- Visit the Cheltenham Science Festival
- Take part in some British Science week activities
- Visit a zoo, wildlife park or bird park and find out about animals natural habitats and diets
- Take part in the Great Garden Bird Watch or go on a bug hunt
STEM Learning is the home of STEM