At Creswell Junior School we want our children to be naturally curious about the world around them. We offer a broad and balanced curriculum that meets the needs of all children and one which motivates and enthuses learning. We are committed to raising aspirations and opening children’s eyes to the world beyond their immediate environment by providing a stimulating and challenging school environment alongside engaging activities and learning opportunities. In addition, we wish to encourage all genders to see that a career in Science is entirely achievable for either sex and will endeavour to promote familiarity with both male and female Scientists, from History and in current practice.
Throughout our school, children are encouraged to develop and use a range of skills including questioning, researching and observing for ourselves; scientific skills and knowledge are progressive with an emphasis on children retaining the key facts that they have been taught. With Creswell Crags, a national Heritage site on our doorstep, we enjoy good community links and opportunities for the children to experience the wider world.
We want our children to have a broad vocabulary and essential Scientific language is to be taught and built upon as topics are revisited in different year groups and across key stages. Staff model accurate, ambitious and sophisticated vocabulary and there are high expectations of the children to demonstrate their understanding of this scientific vocabulary in their written work. Children are also encouraged to become confident speakers who can articulately express themselves when discussing scientific concepts; through discussion they will bolster their ability to grasp ideas and think more logically. We intend to provide all children regardless of ethnic origin, gender, class, aptitude or disability with a broad and balanced science curriculum. There is a core intention that the most able children are challenged by the Science curriculum and those who find learning more difficult, including those with SEND are supported and encouraged to embed skills and to learn in a style that best suits their individual needs.
Creswell Junior School uses ‘Rising Stars Switched on Science 2nd Edition’; this scheme provides the coverage of the National Curriculum which is required. Our Staff use the planning suggested by the scheme, but amend and adapt each lesson according to the needs of the children in each class to ensure that the knowledge we are aiming to convey is covered in an interesting and interactive way, incorporating many practical investigations.
Throughout our Science lessons, we encourage the children to ask questions to which they can develop investigations and find answers for themselves. Learning is based around units, which focus on some of the scientific principles found in Physics, Biology and Chemistry. Teachers use precise questioning and accurate vocabulary and encourage the children to engage in discussions using a high standard of speech. Knowledge is reinforced and quizzed at regular intervals to embed the concepts being taught. As a school which places a high value on inclusion, Staff plan their lessons to encourage engagement and learning from all students; support from Teaching Assistants is utilised to aid understanding and participation in activities whenever possible. Core knowledge is covered in such a way that concepts can be understood and retained by the majority of the students. At the end of each unit, a short consolidation test is undertaken and Staff use these results alongside teacher assessment based on the work produced and observations, to record a level on FFT. These assessments indicate which children may need further support in the following topic and which children can be brought on to understand their learning at a greater depth.
Each unit is introduced with the study of our ‘Knowledge mats’ which contain key vocabulary that will be essential throughout the unit and the ‘Sticky Knowledge’ which the children should know by the end of the Half Term. These mats are put into their Science books and are frequently referred to throughout the unit; quick quizzes and recall discussions are dropped into warm-ups and plenaries in order to reinforce the learning which has gone before.
We have high expectations as to the standard of written work across all curriculum areas and encourage children to produce written responses, diagrams, table and charts which are well-presented and accurate. We build upon the knowledge and understanding of previous years and develop the attributes that will be necessary for good scientific inquiry in KS3. Children are expected to follow and comply with safety rules around the use of equipment, but are equally expected to handle, use and return apparatus throughout a lesson with minimal Staff guidance.
Children at Creswell Junior School will:
- · be able to apply knowledge and skills learnt through Science lessons to a wider context in their lives outside school.
- · be able to question ideas and reflect on knowledge.
- · be able to articulate their understanding of scientific concepts and be able to discuss scientific ideas using rich language linked to science.
- · work collaboratively and practically to investigate and experiment.
- · achieve age related expectations in Science at the end of their cohort year.
We hope that by providing engaging, high quality science experiences, that our children will be furnished with the foundations of understanding of the core principles of Primary Science. Our aim is to encourage the children to question the world around them and to find ways to satisfy that curiosity independently or by supporting each other in their enquiries.
By encouraging high-quality writing and Mathematical skills, within Science lessons, we intend to foster a pride in their written presentations and a desire to maintain good standards across the curriculum.
Above all, we hope to develop a child’s life-long desire to learn, to question the things they see around them and to encourage a retention of knowledge that will remain with them as they grow into responsible and curious young adults.