Alston Lane Catholic Primary School & Nursery
Science Curriculum Statement
Science teaching at Alston Lane Catholic Primary School aims to give all children a strong understanding of the world around them whilst acquiring 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. At Alston Lane Catholic Primary School, we aim to explicitly teach pupils the concepts and procedures needed to work scientifically. Scientific enquiry skills are embedded into each topic the children study and these topics are revisited and developed throughout their time at school. Topics, such as Plants, are taught in Key Stage One and studied again in further detail throughout Key Stage Two. This model allows children to build upon their prior knowledge and increases their enthusiasm for the topics whilst embedding this procedural knowledge into the long-term memory. All children are encouraged to develop and use a range of skills including observations, planning and investigations, as well as being encouraged to question the world around them and become independent learners in exploring possible answers for their scientific based questions. Specialist vocabulary for topics is taught and built upon and effective questioning to communicate ideas is encouraged. Concepts taught should be reinforced by focusing on the key features of scientific enquiry, so that pupils learn to use a variety of approaches to answer relevant scientific questions.
At Alston Lane Catholic Primary School, our science curriculum follows ‘Plan Assessment’ materials to deliver the national curriculum alongside wider scientific knowledge, imparted through other subjects, such as relationships and sex education. Science teaching begins in the early years and knowledge is built upon in successive year groups to enable well-informed, knowledgeable pupils who enjoy scientific learning through an increasing repertoire of disciplinary and substantive knowledge. Behaving like a scientist is a key skill that we hope every child will acquire, though practical opportunities and topic based investigations and experiments. These skills are also progressive and are set out for staff to plan from. Understanding prior learning is a key feature of teaching in science at Alston Lane. Teachers draw upon prior learning at the start of new topics and support children to recall their knowledge of specific area of study.
Topic work is enhanced by providing children with rich reading opportunities, relevant to their age. Suitable books are displayed in the class reading areas, developed for this purpose.
Scientific and topic based vocabulary is displayed on class working walls and referred back to frequently throughout the topic. Understanding what children already know at the beginning of a topic, also helps teachers to plan meaningful lessons that develop and extend children’s learning.
Key questions are developed in investigative science for the children to explore, draw conclusions from and present their findings; in books, orally or through different media selected for the purpose.
Outdoor learning is promoted when possible and when suitable. The school’s garden, chickens and local area provides ample opportunities for children to explore, observe and record their findings.
Extra-curricular opportunities are planned for by staff and incorporated into medium term plans so outcomes inform and extend existing knowledge or promote a ‘wow’ for future learning.
The knowledge that is taught in each year group can be found under the links below.