At Gorseybrigg Primary School we strive to cultivate a real sense of excitement and curiosity about science, and aim to deliver high quality science teaching, supporting and encouraging all children to achieve their full potential.
“Science is all about exploring, and the only way to uncover the secrets of the universe is to go and look. Science is different to all other systems of thought because you don’t need faith in it, you can check that it works.” Brian Cox.
At Gorseybrigg Primary School, we want all our pupils to be inspired and engaged by a high quality scientific education.
- We believe that the study of science will develop children’s interest in the world in which they live and promote a respect for the environment.
- Our science curriculum provides a framework for every child to explore scientific concepts; experiment with and improve their practical skills and participate successfully as part of a community of scientists.
- We are committed to promoting depth of knowledge which is supported by the direct teaching of challenging, domain-specific scientific vocabulary to enable children to consider and articulate their developing understanding and opinions.
- We strive to cultivate a sense of excitement and curiosity about natural phenomena and to support all children to achieve their full potential.
Throughout the academic year, opportunities for participating in scientific activities are provided as an enhancement to the wider curriculum including but not limited to:
- A whole-school themed week, timed to coincide with British Science Week, during which all classes participate in specially designed scientific activities and have the opportunity to take part in workshops and talks given by scientists from the local community and from Sheffield University
- A yearly science competition
- Scientific activities linked to our outdoor learning and D&T provision
Throughout the year, the core science curriculum is delivered by weekly lessons in KS1 and KS2 and as part of continuous provision in EYFS. Each year group covers the topics recommended in the 2014 national curriculum and the children develop their understanding through scientific enquiries.
At Gorseybrigg, our science lessons will emphasise “working scientifically.” In order to do this, we focus on the five key areas of working scientifically: observation over time, pattern seeking, identifying, classifying and grouping, comparative and fair testing and research using secondary sources. These are woven into science lessons and planning ensures that children are able to access all the areas consistently, using a variety of hands-on investigations that, where possible, are related to everyday life. We aim to integrate core skills including the development of English skills (reading, writing, speaking and listening), mathematical skills (measurement, mathematical recording and the analysis of information) and computing skills (the use of data loggers, stop watches, cameras and tablets).
We have two science subject leaders in order to ensure coverage, continuity and progression throughout the whole school. They have a range of joint responsibilities:
- To monitor and evaluate science teaching and learning
- To manage the science budget effectively
- To maintain the science element of the School Improvement Plan
- To liaise and consult with outside agencies, local clusters and community groups
- To support and advise teachers in the planning and delivery of science lessons
- To maintain and monitor science resources in school
- To attend and disseminate training
- To ensure membership of the ASE (Association for Science Education) is up to date and used in school.
We want all children at our school to make excellent progress, achieve success and find enjoyment in science. Our belief that participating in scientific activities promotes a questioning attitude and provides the fundamentals for understanding the world guides the choice of activities and resources to promote active participation by everyone whatever their race, gender, economic status and ability. We strive to meet the needs of those pupils with special educational needs, disabilities, particular gifts and talents and children for whom English is an additional language so that everyone is able to fulfil their potential.
Where appropriate, our science education is filtered through our ‘big idea concepts’ so it has relevance for children’s understanding of our local, national and worldwide community. We aim to equip pupils with the scientific knowledge, skills and understanding which will enable them to appreciate the implications and uses of science in the past, in today’s society and for the future.
To achieve our high expectations and fulfil our commitment to excellence, we appreciate how crucial it is to engage with students in order to evaluate the impact of our provision. We regularly conduct pupil voice interviews and act on the outcomes. Using regular assessment, we consider the attainment of individuals and use the results to set pupil targets.
To inform excellence in science teaching, we intend that teaching staff will develop a deep knowledge of the curriculum. To enable this, all teachers have access to our Association for Science Education membership and participate in practical training sessions arranged in-house by our science specialists. Assessment against the curriculum enables us to consider attainment and progress and adjust teaching accordingly, communicating achievement in science to children’s new teachers. Regular monitoring including lesson observations, book-looks where appropriate and the checking of planning takes place in a supportive atmosphere where the emphasis is on improvement and the sharing of ideas.
We believe teaching and learning of science should be linked, wherever possible, to real world experiences: this will inspire children to develop an understanding and enquiring mind. Science creates and changes our modern society; it influences the way we live and is vital to our future. During our yearly ‘Science Week’, parents/carers and our local community experts who have/had Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths related careers are invited into school to share their knowledge and expertise with the children.
By promoting science capital in our children, we can help them to see science as an essential part of their lives, which will help increase their awareness of STEM-related careers in the future.