Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)
By the end of the EYFS children will be able to talk about similarities and differences in relation to materials and living things. They will be able to make observations of animals, and plants and explain why some things occur and talk about changes. This knowledge will be specifically taught through the topics of myself (the five senses), growth, the farm and animals, when the children will grow their own plants and do experiments to see what a plant needs to grow, watch butterflies emerging from a chrysalis, and learn about different types of animals and minibeasts and what environments they like to live in. Where possible the children will observe the habitat of minibeasts in our outdoor area environment. The children will learn about the properties of different materials during free choice play activities, specifically the construction tables, water, sand and messy play and outdoor areas.
Key Stage 1 (KS1)
By the end of KS1 the children will have developed scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding of the following: common plants and their basic structure and what they need to grow healthily into mature plants; how plants and animals adapt to their habitats and how they all depend on each other in a food chain; common animals and their different classification names and what humans need to survive to have babies that grow into adults; everyday materials and their properties and how they make them suitable for their particular uses; know seasons have different weather and how day length varies. Pupils will have developed their understanding of scientific ideas by using different types of scientific enquiry skills including: asking simple questions and recognising that they can be answered in different ways; observing changes over a period of time and noticing patterns; grouping and classifying things; using simple equipment and performing simple comparative tests; and finding things out using secondary sources of information. Pupils will have developed their scientific vocabulary in the topics studied.
Lower Key Stage 2 (LKS2)
By the end of Year 4, LKS2, the children will have developed scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding of the following: functions of different parts of flowering plants and their role in the life cycle of a flowering plant; classification keys to identify and name living things; purpose of the human skeleton, muscles, teeth and digestive system and food chains; properties and uses of rocks and how fossils and soils are formed; light travels, is reflected and produces shadows that vary in size; forces and magnets and how they differ and what materials are magnetic; materials change state when they are heated or cooled and how this is seen in the water cycle; sound travels through things and causes vibrations and how the pitch and volume of sound can be altered; simple electric circuits involving wires, bulbs, buzzers, switches and common insulators and conductors of electricity. Pupils will have continued to develop their understanding of scientific ideas by using different types of scientific enquiry skills including: asking questions about what they observe and making decisions about types of scientific enquiry which are likely to be the best way of answering them; observing changes over a period of time and noticing patterns; grouping and classifying things; using simple equipment and performing simple comparative and fair tests; beginning to identify and classify; finding things out by using secondary sources of information; draw simple conclusions. Pupils will have developed their scientific vocabulary in the topics studied and demonstrated it in written tasks.
Upper Key Stage 2 (UKS2)
By the end of KS2 the children will have developed scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding of the following: life cycles and reproduction of plants and animals and classification of living things based on specific characteristics; changes as humans develop to old age, the circulatory system and how lifestyle can impact on it; properties of everyday materials and how they can be separated through filtering, sieving and evaporating; movement of the Earth in relation to the sun and moon and how day and night happens; forces of gravity, air resistance, water resistance and friction; fossils provide information about living things that once lived, offspring vary from their parent and adaptation may lead to evolution; light travels in straight lines and how shadows are formed; draw circuits using symbols, compare circuits and associate brightness or volume with the number of cells in a circuit. Pupils will have continued to develop their understanding of scientific ideas by using different types of scientific enquiry skills including: asking questions about scientific phenomena and analysing functions, relationships and interactions; recognising that scientific ideas change and develop over time; selecting appropriate ways to answer science questions; observing changes over different periods of time and noticing patterns; grouping and classifying things; using simple equipment and performing simple comparative and fair tests; grouping and classifying; finding things out using a wide range of secondary sources of information; drawing conclusions based on their data and observations; using evidence to justify their ideas; using scientific knowledge and understanding to explain their findings. Pupils will have developed their scientific vocabulary in the topics studied and demonstrated it in written tasks.
We deliver our Science Curriculum through a topic based curriculum primarily. The curriculum delivered is based on the National Curriculum. Children at RCS in KS1 experience 4 units of Science over the course of the academic year, whereas in KS2 they have 5 units. Most of the time these units are taught as a whole, but sometimes they have been split up to enable cross curricular links with our topic based curriculum. At RCS we have written our own Scheme of Work (SOW) in order to deliver the units. The SOW has been written to ensure science is taught through as many scientific enquiry skills as possible, but also ensuring scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding is embedded. Children at RCS from Year 1 to Year 6 have four half terms where Science is the Assessment Focus and where the main elements of the Science Curriculum are taught. Some Science teaching may occur in half terms that do not have Science as a focus, but links well to the overall topic being delivered. In the FS children learn through a topic based curriculum and aspects of Science are woven through when applicable in line with the early learning goals. Specific concepts are taught through carpet sessions and teacher led activities as the curriculum lends itself. The children are also given opportunities to explore scientific concepts in the sand and water trays, messy play stations, malleable areas and outdoor areas daily.
In Years 1-6, Teachers can choose to deliver Science on a weekly basis for the duration of the half-term, or they can block it in bigger chunks.
The detail of where all the aspects of the Science Curriculum are taught, can be seen in the table below. Each year group also has a Curriculum Map and the aspects of the Science Curriculum designated to that year group have been allocated in the half-terms where Science will be a focus (in bold) and in other half-terms if there is a direct link to the overall topic being delivered.
Where possible teachers will use a variety of learning styles to ensure all children have access to the curriculum. The emphasis is on imparting scientific knowledge and developing scientific enquiry skills by providing first-hand practical experiences. Teachers strive to meet the needs of all individual learners in their teaching of Science. This may include, for example, exploring a range of ways for pupils to record their scientific findings and share knowledge acquired (e.g. verbal/video presentations, hot seating, practical demonstrations) and the use of word mapping/vocabulary exploration activities to promote the understanding of scientific language.
Please see our SEND/Equality Statement of Intent/Implementation for more information on ways in which we seek to ensure that all pupils have opportunities to succeed across all curriculum areas.
In order to ensure the Science Curriculum offered to the children at RCS is the best and that pupils achieve well, teachers’ plans will be monitored, history lessons will be observed, children’s books will be scrutinised and assessments will be collated. During School Council meetings, there will be opportunities for children to comment and make changes to the curriculum they are being offered. In turn, this will ensure the pupils at RCS are ready and confident to embark with more Science learning at secondary school.