Science

Vision

At Upper Wharfedale Primary Federation we work hard to provide a rich and varied science curriculum to challenge and meet the needs of pupils. Children love the chance to learn through being hands-on and finding things out for themselves – the perfect way to understand the world around them. That is why we encourage as many ‘child-led investigations’ as possible: where the child decides the course their experiment is going to take and what it is going to prove.

Alongside the practical, all pupils should be taught the essential aspects of knowledge, processes and uses of science in our world. From EYFS up to Year 6, our pupils will build up a body of key foundational knowledge and concepts, pupils are encouraged to recognise the power of rational explanation and develop a sense of excitement and curiosity about natural phenomena.

We provide our children with wider opportunities in science and encourage links to other subjects.

Teachers teach and challenge pupils based on our progressive curriculum planning, which is in line with the requirements set out in the National Curriculum for science.

Our science leader is Mrs Cumberland.

Implementation

In KS1 & KS2, the content of science teaching and learning is set out in the 2014 National Curriculum for primary schools in England. Each year, a number of science strands are repeated across the Key Stages with increasing levels of difficulty. These scientific strands are woven into the UWPF long term planning cycles (KS1: 3 years & KS2: 4 years) and linked to the main topic driver (wherever possible). They are planned by the class teacher and differentiated to cover all the outcomes for each year group. For example, a group of lessons considering: ‘Animals including humans’, would involve: looking at the human body, recognising animal groups and sorting these animals in the Year 2 group; but, at the same time and in the same classroom, the Year 6 children will be studying the internal structure of the human body in relation to circulation, classifying living things based on more complex characteristics and exploring scientific research into this classification.

Alongside the knowledge and understanding of science strands, runs the ‘working scientifically’ element of the science curriculum, this is planned and implemented across the UWPF in the same way. It focuses on the skills the children need to become accurate, careful and confident practical scientists. Children are expected to master certain skills in each year group and there is a very clear progression of these set out for each school to refer to within the National Curriculum.  For example: In Year 1 a child may have to ask questions, carry out a simple test, record simple data and then try to answer questions. By Year 6, they should be able to plan and carry out a fair test by using equipment accurately and taking exact readings or measurements. They are also expected to be able to draw conclusions from their results and record them using a range of graphs and charts.

Impact

Through our science teaching at UWPF, we provide learning opportunities that enable all pupils to make good progress. We strive hard to meet the needs of those pupils with special educational needs, those with disabilities and those with special gifts and talents. We enable all pupils to have access to a full range of activities involved in learning, exploring and discovering a lifelong love for science and we know that:

  • There is a clear progression of children’s work and teachers’ expectations in our school.
  • Children’s work shows a range of topics and evidence of the curriculum coverage for all science topics.
  • Children are becoming increasingly independent in science, selecting their own tools and materials, completing pupil lead investigations and choosing their own strategies for recording.
  • Feedback from teachers has impact on our pupils, often with next step questions to push learning on.
  • Standards in science at the end of the key stages are good and issues arising are addressed effectively in school.
  • Teachers’ judgements are moderated internally.

Useful websites

https://www.stem.org.uk/home-learning/family-activities

A range of fun, hands-on activities for families to use at home, suitable for all ages from 4 to 16.

https://www.raisingdragons.com/

This site is filed with online science activities for toddlers and pre-schoolers.

https://littlebinsforlittlehands.com/30-preschool-science-experiments-for-the-young-scientist/

Curious kids turn into junior scientists with these preschool science experiments and beyond!

https://funlearningforkids.com/science-activities-

From science experiments to sensory explorations to STEM and STEAM activities, these science activities for young children are sure to be a hit!

https://mysteryscience.com/

Mystery Science offers free lessons broken down in year group levels on fun topics like, “Why are baby animals so cute?”

https://eyes.nasa.gov/

This website offers cool space-related videos and activities.

https://www.thehappyscientist.com/

On this website you don’t need to log in. Just explore, have fun and learn some science along the way

https://www.howstuffworks.com/

How Stuff Works will keep curious kids entertained for hours.