Our vision for science at St Agnes Academy focuses on the core foundation of curiosity for the world around us. We aim to build upon all pupils’ natural inquisitiveness, instilling a life-long love of science and a high regard for its purpose in the world.
We intend to achieve this by providing all pupils with a carefully designed coherent curriculum, from their first to final year, aimed at developing the knowledge, scientific skills, scientific enquiry, vocabulary and cultural capital that will help them to succeed in future learning and in life.
We believe our school values and drivers, which underpin our whole school curriculum, will provide all pupils, regardless of background, the learning behaviours and key skills needed to access the full potential of our science curriculum and help continue to excite and inspire them.
At St Agnes Academy, we intend to implement the national curriculum for science 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
(National Curriculum 2014)
Our school curriculum is developed from the National Curriculum 2014 programmes of study for Key Stage 1, 2 and the EYFS Framework in the Foundation Stage.
Children in the Foundation Stage work towards achieving the Early Learning Goals in ‘understanding the world’. Teachers plan specific topics and build upon and develop children’s own interests and curiosity about the world they live in. Science in Early Years is taught alongside other areas of learning.
In Years 1 to 6, teachers plan lessons that are based on the topic areas and objectives set out in the National Curriculum. Opportunities for working scientifically are identified and planned for to ensure a progression of skills implemented through both practical science and key questioning. Knowledge Organisers are used to ensure that children are building on previous knowledge when revisiting topics as well as setting out the fundamental knowledge and vocabulary for the unit ahead.
At the beginning of each unit, children complete a quiz in order for the teacher to elicit starting points and identify misconceptions. The same quiz is revisited at the end of the unit to demonstrate progress and to identify and address any gaps in learning. Working Scientifically assessment investigations have been mapped out across the school to ensure that our children are confident in this area and to allow our teachers to identify where support or challenge is needed.
We will also ensure that children have access to a wide range of educational experiences outside of school through trips and links with outside agencies and other activities such as a our yearly Science Fayre. We also draw on our outdoor space to develop our children’s ability to work scientifically and to inspire wonder, respect and connection to our natural environment.
To enable children to gain the investigative skills that develop their ability to work scientifically, our science curriculum will apply and develop key literacy, mathematical and computing skills. By promoting our school values (responsibility, perseverance, joy, courage and kindness) during the teaching of science, we will help children develop the appropriate learning behaviours to develop these key skills. Our drivers (Courage, Compassion, Conservation, Connections and Curiosity) will further embed these learning behaviours and enable children to use them in context throughout life, helping to influence their individuality and enable them to become responsible citizens - supporting our vision to excite and inspire.
All children will learn about significant individuals who have played an important role in scientific discoveries, making links to our wider curriculum, school values and drivers; helping to raise their aspirations. They will have rich experiences both in and out of school, playing active roles in local and global projects that will provide them with a vast insight into various future careers accessible through science and giving them life skills to achieve their best.
At St Agnes Academy, we have 3 measures of curriculum impact, all of which are essential in ensuring that our children make excellent progress, are ready for the next phase in their learning journey and are well-rounded, thoughtful and responsible individuals. Our 3 measures are:
- What we learn
- Who we are
- How we behave
The successful implementation of our science curriculum will see all pupils enjoying science in school. Our children will know and remember more and will be confident in the methods, processes and uses of science. They will be able to successfully communicate their scientific knowledge, understanding and ideas using precise vocabulary and will be ready for the next stage of their learning journey. On transition to secondary education, all children will have the confidence to work with increasing independence in science; drawing upon all the working scientifically skills and knowledge they have gained through their primary education. By teaching science through predominately practical-based activities, children will experience the scientific phenomena for themselves and use this experience to raise their own questions, develop their problem solving skills and consequently maintain curiosity.
Our children will be curious about the world around them and understand their responsibility for it. They will understand how science has the power to change things for the better and its role in helping to solve the current environmental issues. Our children will critical thinkers who enjoy the challenge of posing and answering questions. They will be able to draw on a wide range of skills in maths, computing and English to help solve problems and communicate their thinking. Through collaborative work they will learn to be an active listener and participant and to show respect for others' ideas. They will have the resilience to be challenged and the confidence and personal skills to challenge others respectfully. Through scientific enquiry and investigation our children will develop the tenacity to keep going and the flexibility to try different ways of working.
Our children will think and act like scientists!