At Merrow Schools Federation, we recognise the importance of science in our lives: in the past, in the present and in the future. The children will be working as scientists as we encourage curious minds so that they develop their understanding of, and are inquisitive about, the wider world.
Their journey as scientists begins in a richly resourced and child-led environment in Early Years. Through continuous provision, child-initiated learning and specific teaching, children are introduced to early scientific concepts taught through the ‘Understanding the world’ strand in the Early Years Foundation Stage framework. As children move through the school, they build on this successful start and develop confidence, skills and knowledge. Where possible, science is taught with cross-curricular links to help children make connections and experience a wide view of how their world works and the part they can play in it. With an emphasis on developing vocabulary to reduce the word gap in schools, we teach specific scientific terms and model using them in a variety of contexts.
Children will learn key scientific knowledge (as laid out in the National Curriculum for Science) and develop scientific enquiry skills, taught through and alongside the subject content. These ‘working scientifically’ skills include planning, predicting, measuring, recording and reporting findings, drawing conclusions and problem-solving. Children will have the opportunity to use a wide range of scientific instruments and equipment.
Opportunities are provided to include mathematical knowledge (such as in collecting, presenting and analysing data) and to use learnt literacy skills through extended writing opportunities. We are fortunate at our schools to have a wonderful outside learning environment, which we use in our science teaching to provide local ‘real life’ context.
On leaving our schools, a successful learner of this subject will:
- Have developed a sense of curiosity about our awe-inspiring world;
- Have gained a secure and deep understanding of the scientific knowledge set out in the statutory requirements in the National Curriculum for Science;
- Be familiar with, and use, scientific vocabulary accurately and precisely;
- Be able to select the most appropriate ways to answer science questions using different types of scientific enquiry, including observing changes over different periods of time, noticing patterns, grouping and classifying things, carrying out comparative and fair tests and finding things out using a wide range of secondary sources of information;
- Be able to take measurements, using a range of scientific equipment, with increasing accuracy and precision, and understand the need to repeat readings;
- Seek answers to questions through collecting, analysing and presenting data;
- Draw conclusions based on their data and observations, use evidence to justify their ideas;
- Use their scientific knowledge and understanding to explain their findings;
- Recognise that scientific ideas change and develop over time ;
- Know about the significance of the work of different scientists from the past and the present, identifying scientific evidence that has been used to support or refute ideas or arguments;
- Be aware of the possibility of careers in STEM in later life;
- Be excited about science in secondary school.