Science Curriculum Content and Sequence
SCIENCE SEQUENCE OVERVIEW
To download the full Science Sequence Overview please click on the image below
A high-quality science education provides the foundations for understanding the world through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics. Science has changed our lives and is vital to the world’s future prosperity. All pupils will be taught the essential aspects of the knowledge, methods, processes and uses of science. Through building up a body of key foundational knowledge and concepts, children will develop as competent scientists, having the confidence to apply their knowledge and skills in wider contexts. Pupils will be: a) encouraged to recognise the power of rational explanation and develop a sense of excitement and curiosity about natural phenomena (awe and wonder); and, b) be encouraged to understand how science can be used to explain what is occurring, predict how things will behave, and analyse causes.
Our vision is to ignite pupils' curiosity, creating learners who think deeply, encouraging them to confidently explore and discover the world around them, so that they develop a deeper understanding of the world we live in. We want children to understand how scientists think and work, recognising the impact they have in the world, both historically and through the role science has in the future. We want children to have the confidence to make clear links between their learning and real life – and to understand how their developing knowledge and skills can be used to creatively solve a range of real-life problems. This will give them the tools that they will need to thrive in an ever-changing and uncertain world.
In line with the whole school curriculum policy, the following drivers and principles underpin everything we do in science.
Life Opportunities Creativity, Confidence, Competence
Balanced Coherent Real & Relevant
Knowledge Rich Cognitively Challenging Inclusive
Having a knowledge rich approach in science ensures children are equipped with the essential knowledge to be educated citizens, introducing them to the best of what has been thought and said.
The relevance of science in everyday life is brought to life, including a focus on science based careers, using ACRO champions to introduce children to individuals in the local community and beyond who have careers rooted in science.
Creativity Confidence Competence
The science curriculum seeks to build knowledge upon knowledge and skills upon skills, sequencing progression through the school. This seeks to embed competence and confidence within the subject by focusing on core aspects children must achieve to be able to progress. Because of our focus on embedding core knowledge and skills our children are then able to creatively apply what they have learnt to solve problems and to use what they know to predict, compare and contrast – allowing them to plan and undertake science tests systematically and accurately. They will also be able to apply their knowledge in debates and discussions, being articulate with their thoughts and ideas.
The wider curriculum at Chesswood is very broad and balanced. Science is taught for two hours every week and we cover the complete Key Stage 2 Science curriculum through our three main strands of Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Alongside the core knowledge and skills we have also chosen to focus on promoting focus scientists in each unit of work so that children are aware of the important developments in each strand and know something about the lives of the people who made these discoveries. We also use these scientists to promote the life and career opportunities that Science can provide as well as to reflect the diversity of the modern world. We are especially keen on introducing our children to female role models with the hope that we can inspire all of our children to see Science as a potential future career.
The science leaders have autonomy to build and oversee the whole school science curriculum at a medium term level, ensuring they have a full understanding of the progressive journey children have through the units planned – what has been taught before and how knowledge builds upon knowledge. Progression is sequenced deliberately and in detail, Identifying the key knowledge, skills and concepts (KSC) that need to be learnt and understood at each stage of the curriculum. Leaders are responsible to quality assure and ensure clear progression across the science curriculum. Following the model of the spiral and ladder curriculum, learning is revisited and built upon.
Real and Relevant
Science learning is rooted in real life experience, enabling children to understand the world around them. Units of work are linked, wherever possible, to the work of real-life scientists (historical and current), and to the lives of those whose careers have roots in science (eg electricians). ACRO champions will be developed so that children realise that a future career in Science is a realistic possibility and to understand some of the many scientific careers that are available. Children will be encouraged to think about science in everyday life through ‘science homework bag’ activities.
The science curriculum seeks to sequence knowledge effectively, ensuring that children have a good understanding of core knowledge to enable them to progress from unit to unit. Knowledge is specified in detail in the medium term overviews to support teachers delivering a consistent curriculum; with core knowledge (taught to be remembered in the long term) outlined in knowledge organisers for units of work. Knowledge is seen as an essential foundation for children to be able to make informed decisions in their work; developing confidence which enables them to be competently creative in their work.
The science curriculum seeks to introduce children to the best of what has been thought and said, linking to key individuals historically and currently. Having a depth of knowledge (taught to be remembered), children can engage in more cognitively challenging activities. To this end, Bloom’s Taxonomy is used to promote higher order thinking skills of synthesis and evaluation.
A knowledge focus is an inclusive approach. Knowledge is selected deliberately, focusing on the best of which has been thought and said in science, ensuring ‘cultural capital’ is developed for all. A knowledge focus has significant advantages for disadvantaged children as it ‘enables students to acquire knowledge that takes them beyond their own experiences.… Knowledge-led curricula attempt to provide young people with a school experience that enables them to be socially mobile, for this is at the core of what social justice is: enabling all people, regardless of socio-economic background, to be provided with the opportunities to succeed in life.’ We will do this through the following: maximising cross-curricular links; frequent referencing of Science as a life opportunity (see above); use of homework bags to increase excitement and engagement in Science; using The Great Chesswood Science Fair as a platform for showcasing the children’s enthusiasm for, and engagement in, Science. We are also using some of our clubs to directly target some of our disadvantaged children, to increase their cultural capital and to provide them with a richer range of scientific experiences.
So How does this work in practiCe?
Please use the menu for examples of our children's learning journeys through the different strands of the Science Curriculum and some examples of how we use The Great Chesswood Science Fair and our Science Homework Bags to help build our children's Creativity, Competence and Confidence in Science whilst also developing their Cultural Capital, i.e. their ability to talk confidently and passionately about what they have learnt and how it relates to their own life experiences.