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Science

At North Downs, we believe in delivering a high-quality Science education.  Our intent is that children have a clear understanding of the world around them, whilst also developing the specific skills and knowledge to help them to work scientifically. Science is vital to the world’s future prosperity; it has the power to influence behaviours and attitudes.  Therefore, we aim to encourage the children to develop an awareness of scientific concepts, processes and the implications of Science within the wider world, both today and in the future. We intend that they leave North Downs with a secure set of scientific skills, knowledge and curiosity, alongside awe and wonder of our natural world.

We believe that it is vitally important that children develop a secure understanding of each key block of knowledge and concepts, in order to progress from one stage to the next.  ‘Working scientifically’, which specifies the understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science for each year group, will be embedded within all aspects of Science, focusing on the key features of scientific enquiry, so that pupils learn to use a variety of approaches to answer relevant scientific questions, using a ‘hands on’ approach, wherever possible. This will enable children to develop a sense of excitement, inquisitively and curiosity about everything around them.

At North Downs, we want the children to be aware of the scientific enquiry skills required within each topic area and how they can relate to other key areas of the science curriculum. We have a clear progression of learning as children move up through the school. 

We follow the Collins Scheme of Work in Science to ensure we deliver a rich, meaningful, consistent, balanced and age appropriate curriculum.

  1. The science scheme has clear progression pathways.
  2. Working scientifically, where children develop an understanding of the nature and processes of science and the key scientific knowledge and concepts, is embedded in the scheme.
  3. The scheme encourages children to be curious, to find answers to questions about the world around them, to be involved and to reflect on their own learning.
  4. Every child has the opportunity to achieve in every lesson.
  5. Suggested assessment opportunities are an integral part of the scheme, which enables teachers to evaluate children’s progress.

Teachers are encouraged and supported to develop their subject knowledge and their teaching and assessing of the working scientifically skills. We have rich resources throughout the school, such as extensive and varied habitats and a Sensory Garden, which enables us to incorporate outdoor learning opportunities within the science curriculum. We engage children through school trips, Science weeks and visits with experts, in order to enhance their learning experience.

Our science curriculum has been well thought out and is planned to demonstrate progression of both the knowledge and skills required to work scientifically. Lessons are differentiated to allow for all the children in North Downs to access the curriculum, enabling them to make good or better progress. We develop much learning through practical experiences, which are then reinforced using secondary resources.

We measure the impact of our curriculum through tracking of knowledge through observations of pupil discussions about their learning, in order to track where children are on their individual learning journeys. Every lesson in Snap Science includes Assessment for Learning strategies which enable teachers to find out what children have learnt and to use that information formatively.

Teachers assess if children are able to articulate their thinking using high quality scientific vocabulary. Teachers assess if children are able to use their scientific enquiry skills to approach investigations as they continue to grow on their scientific learning journey.

The impact of internal and external trips and visits from experts, a celebration of learning during our school science week, demonstrates progression across the school. We want to develop children’s understanding of the responsibility we all have to keep our natural and scientific world around us.  By teaching children, the value of science, in such a way, prepares them for their future on our planet.