Science Policy

North Ealing Primary School
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Statement of Intent:

“Science is an integral part of modern culture. It stretches the imagination and creativity of young people. Its challenges are quite enormous,”

– Professor Malcolm Longair.

“The joy of discovery is certainly the liveliest that the mind of man can ever feel,”

– Claude Bernard. (1813-78)

Introduction

This policy outlines the teaching, organisation and management of science taught at North Ealing Primary School. The school’s policy for science is based on the new primary curriculum which is statutory from September 2014. The implementation of this policy is the responsibility of all teaching staff.

Teaching Science

At North Ealing we believe that the best science teaching fosters and develops pupils’ curiosity in the subject whilst also helping them to fulfil their potential. For our pupils to achieve well in science, they need to acquire the necessary scientific knowledge and also be able to enjoy the experience of engaging and purposeful scientific enquiry in order to help them to answer scientific questions about the world around them.

The new National Curriculum 2014 states why we teach science in schools:

‘A high-quality science education provides the foundations for understanding the world through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics…Through building up a body of key foundational knowledge and concepts, pupils should be encouraged to recognise the power of rational explanation and develop a sense of excitement and curiosity about natural phenomena.’

 

Aims

The aim of science teaching at North Ealing Primary School is to inspire, nurture and feed children’s natural curiosity about the world around them and all its phenomena. For this reason, we follow an enquiry- based approach to science, enabling children to make links to the big ideas of science in order to prepare for life in an increasingly scientific and technological world.

Through high-quality science teaching, we aim to help our pupils understand how major scientific ideas have played a vital role in society. Moreover, we aim to prepare our pupils for life in an increasingly scientific and technological world.

We aim to do implement this by:

  • Delivering high quality, interesting and engaging enquiry based lessons
  • Using scientific contexts to develop and consolidate cross-curricular skills in literacy, maths, computing and other curriculum areas
  • Teaching science in a global and historical context; including the contributions of significant scientists from a range of cultures
  • Developing and extending pupils’ scientific knowledge and understanding
  • Developing pupils’ ability to work scientifically and involve pupils in planning, carrying out, reporting on and evaluating investigations
  • Developing pupils’ scientific vocabulary and ability to articulate scientific concepts clearly and precisely
  • Ensuring that all pupils are appropriately challenged to make good progress in science
  • Making science lessons accessible for all learners and removing barriers to ensure progress

Teaching and Learning

At North Ealing, teachers plan and deliver high-quality and engaging science lessons incorporating a range of teaching and learning styles that follow the 5E cycle (Engage, Enquire, Explore, Explain and Evaluate), where the children are at the centre of the learning.

At North Ealing, teachers will provide opportunities for pupils to:

  • Learn about science, where possible, through first-hand practical experiences
  • Develop their research skills through the appropriate use of secondary sources
  • Work collaboratively in pairs, groups and individually
  • Develop their reading skills, using a variety of texts that are linked to a range of scientific concepts, topics and people
  • Plan and carry out investigations with an increasing systematic approach as they progress through the school
  • Develop their questioning, predicting, observing, measuring and interpreting skills
  • Record their work in a variety of ways e.g. writing, diagrams, graphs, tables, presentations and drama
  • Read, spell and accurately use scientific vocabulary appropriate for their age in the correct context
  • Be motivated and inspired by engaging and interactive science displays which include key vocabulary and relevant questions
  • Learn about science using the local outdoor learning environment

Planning

  • Science in the Early Years Foundation Stage is planned using the Early Years Curriculum ‘Understanding of the World’.
  • Key Stage 1 and 2 teachers plan science lessons using the National Curriculum (2014).
  • Teachers plan individual lessons from a specific long term plan, which ensures clear progression from EYFS to Year 6.
  • Medium-term plans are created for each individual topic and include a big idea concept, a range of big questions, sequenced learning objectives, success criteria and lesson activities and assessment opportunities. In addition to these elements, the medium-term plans also detail links to the UNICEF rights of the child, sustainability and our local community.
  • ‘Working scientifically’ is embedded throughout the areas of learning in key stage 1 and 2; this focuses on the key aspects of scientific enquiry which enable pupils to investigate and answer scientific questions.
  • Areas of learning within key stage 1 and 2 ensure that statutory requirements are being covered through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics (teachers may also refer to the non-statutory guidance which provides additional support).

Safety

  • Teachers must plan safe activities for science and complete a risk assessment if necessary.
  • Teachers and teaching assistants need to be aware of health and safety procedures when using equipment/food in science lessons.
  • Pupils must be aware of the need for personal safety and the safety of others during science lessons.
  • When undertaking practical tasks, teachers and pupils must recognise and assess any hazards and risks.
  • Pupils are taught to care for and use science equipment correctly.
  • All staff are made aware of hazardous substances through the Control of Harmful & Hazardous Substances Handbook (COHHS). This is monitored annually and staff can refer to the documentation as needed.

Organisation

Science is taught in topic blocks by the class teacher. There are 5 topics (4 topics for Year 1 & 2) that can be covered at any point throughout the year which have been carefully sequenced to complement and ensure coherence across the curriculum.

These topics will be covered for each year group:

Impact

Through the teaching of Science, children gain knowledge and awareness of the world around them. By regularly timetabling Science each week the pupils’ achievement can progress and be regularly monitored and assessed.

Science Assemblies and National Science Week also helps to raise the subject’s profile within the School. In addition to these events, we engage in competitions and fairs and develop children’s understanding through carefully selected science trips. The profile of science at NES is continuously raised to increase the science capital.

Resources

  • The Science Coordinators and The Science Advisory Team are available for support where needed.
  • Resources for each unit are stored in appropriate year groups or in the lower staff room and monitored by the science lead.
  • Useful websites are incorporated into lessons through the use of the Interactive Whiteboard, Chromebooks and ICT suite.
  • The subject leader must be informed of any changes regarding science resources i.e. missing or broken resources and/or when new or replacement resources are required.
  • Staff are provided with a range of resources to allow for specialist CPD.

Assessment and Record-Keeping

  • In class, ongoing teacher assessment is conducted to inform planning and teaching to suit the needs of the children.
  • Achievements are assessed using a wide variety of methods, for example, quizzes, writing, presentations, drama and comprehension. To provide all children with an opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding.
  • Attainment levels are recorded on a termly basis using 3BM spreadsheets and SIMS. These systems allow progress to be tracked and monitored throughout the year.

Marking

  • Teachers follow the school’s marking policy where each piece of work is recognised.
  • Children engage in regular peer and self-assessment alongside verbal teacher feedback.

Monitoring

  • Science is monitored by the science lead regularly and the Senior Leadership team as part of the whole school triangulation and monitoring process.
  • Planning and book scrutiny is also carried out regularly by the science subject leader and the Senior Leadership team with timely feedback and support given.

See also School Policies on:

  • Teaching and Learning
  • Assessment and Record-Keeping
  • Inclusion
  • SEND
  • Health and Safety
  • EYFS
  • Marking Policy

School lead for this policy:
L Pitt & M Bruley
The committee with oversight for this policy
Curriculum & Standards
Policy to be approved by the Headteacher
Autumn 2020
Policy last reviewed by the Curriculum & Standards Committee
Autumn 2020
Policy last ratified and adopted by the Headteacher
Autumn 2020
Policy / Document due for review
Autumn 2024

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