The Curriculum at West Walker Primary School
The Intent, implementation and Impact of our Curriculum
West Walker Primary School understands the need for all pupils to develop their Scientific ability as an essential component of all subjects and as a subject in its own right. A good understanding of scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding helps to support pupils work across the curriculum.
At West Walker Primary School we believe that a high quality science education provides the foundations for understanding the world. Science is vital to our lives and an ever-growing future, and all pupils should be taught essential aspects of the knowledge, methods, processes and uses of science. Through building up a body of key foundational knowledge and concepts, pupils should be encouraged to develop a sense of excitement and curiosity about natural phenomena when taking part in investigations. They should be encouraged to understand how science can be used to explain what is occurring, predict how things will behave, and analyse causes.
Science in our school is about developing children’s ideas and ways of working that enable them to make sense of the world in which they live through investigation, as well as using and applying process skills. The staff at West Walker ensure that all children are exposed to high quality teaching and learning experiences, which allow children to explore their outdoor environment and locality, thus developing their scientific enquiry and investigative skills. They are immersed in scientific vocabulary, which aids children’s knowledge and understanding not only of the topic they are studying, but of the world around them. We intend to further enrich the science curriculum through external visits and welcoming visitors to our school.
In ensuring high standards of teaching and learning in science, we implement a curriculum that is progressive throughout the whole school.
Planning for science is a process in which all teachers are involved to ensure that the school gives full coverage of, ‘The National Curriculum programmes of study for Science 2014’ and, ‘Understanding of the World’ in the Early Years Foundation Stage. Science teaching at West Walker Primary School involves adapting and extending the curriculum to match all pupils’ needs. Where possible, Science is linked to class topics. Science is taught as discrete units and lessons where needed to ensure coverage. Due to one form year groups in our school, Science units are taught on a year rolling programme. This ensures progression between year groups and guarantees topics are covered. Teachers plan to suit their children’s interests, current events, their own teaching style, the use of any support staff and the resources available.
We ensure that all children are provided with rich learning experiences that aim to:
Prepare our children for life in an increasingly scientific and technological world today and in the future.
Help our children acquire a growing understanding of the nature, processes and methods of scientific ideas.
Help develop and extend our children’s scientific concept of their world.
Build on our children’s natural curiosity and developing a scientific approach to problems.
Encouraging open-mindedness, self-assessment, perseverance and developing the skills of investigation – including: observing, measuring, predicting, hypothesising, experimenting, communicating, interpreting, explaining and evaluating.
Develop the use of scientific language, recording and techniques.
Develop the use of computing in investigating and recording.
Make links between science and other subjects.
Science is taught consistently, once a week for up to two hours, but is discretely taught in many different contexts throughout all areas of the curriculum. For example, through English, i.e. writing a letter to a local politician regarding the closure of a park/biography of a famous scientist’s life, etc.
At West Walker Primary School we aspire to promote a practical and enquiry-lead science curriculum. We have introduced half termly assessments to be implemented at the end of each topic to track our children’s progress.
In addition we dedicate one week a year to the teaching and learning of STEM activities and during this week lessons are planned and taught around a specific focus. The activities across school are engaging and stimulating and are celebrated as a whole-school as part of a special assembly.
The impact and measure of this is to ensure children acquire knowledge linked to the science curriculum as well as skills which are needed to work and think scientifically in their everyday lives.
All children will have:
A wider variety of skills linked to both scientific knowledge and understanding, and scientific enquiry/investigative skills.
A richer vocabulary which will enable them to articulate their understanding of taught concepts.
High aspirations, which will see them through to further study, work and a successful adult life.
This will continue throughout West Walker Primary School as the curriculum will continue to develop and improve through relevant CPD opportunities for teaching staff which will benefit effective science planning and teaching.