At West Rainton Primary School, we are delighted to offer an enriched science curriculum that fosters curiosity for the subject. Our science curriculum ensures that the children have the knowledge and skills required to move on in their education and for their future outside of school. Here at West Rainton our young students have the opportunity to learn scientific knowledge through a range of experiences including experiments, investigations and science based trips outside of school.
Leadership and intent of science at West Rainton.
As subject leader at West Rainton Primary school, I believe that it is our responsibility to ignite and nurture pupils’ curiosity and encourage them to confidently explore and discover the world around them, so that they develop a deeper understanding of the world we live in. As subject leader I review the science curriculum delivered each year before I plan the next year’s curriculum. Due to the nature of the mixed classes I ensure that the objectives have been covered for each child and cohort. This does mean that some children will have the opportunity to strengthen and deepen their understanding of an objective.
Please see my full pen profile as subject leader here:
Below are the links to view our curriculum mapping and subject policy for science:
How science is taught at West Rainton
At West Rainton Primary school, children have 2 hours of discrete science lessons per week. Each year group has areas of scientific study on which to focus. These can last for a half or full term. This year due to Covid-19, classes may have key concepts that they are revisiting throughout the year. Children in nursery and reception complete their science curriculum or understanding of the world through their topic work. Science lessons are structured with a mix of conceptual and investigative work and children complete at least two investigations per unit of work.
Every child records their science in a specific exercise book to evidence their learning and for future reference. This recorded work takes a variety of forms including; photographs, written explanations, diagrams as well as other activities.
As part of an Ogden Trust Primary Partnership, staff have opportunities for CPD and opportunities for shared experiences such as trips to the planetarium at Kielder Observatory and links with Durham University. The Ogden trust partnership also gives children the opportunity to discuss their learning with their peers from other schools at shared events such as the Science fair.
In science lessons, teachers share how the knowledge and skills that the children are developing can be used in society and as a career. Resources such as NUSTEM and Stem support teachers in demonstrating how science can be significant and can be linked with jobs. Industries are also invited in to make learning relevant.
The children in our school enjoy their science investigations and meeting different people from the various industries in our local area.
As part of our provision on offer, pupils with special educational needs are planned for very carefully in school. This is an important part of the science curriculum, as we strive to ensure that all of our pupils fully understand what they are being taught. This may involve a more flexible use of scientific vocabulary, or supported recording methods after investigations. It is always a priority for us to ensure that pupils are taught the skills and coverage that they need, rather than just following the national curriculum expectations. We are aware that this is not always what our pupils need – they need a curriculum that is suitable, challenging and relevant. This was highlighted when we were awarded the inclusive ‘Centre of Excellence’ award in late 2020. It is crucial for us that our pupils with SEND make progress, and move on from where they are in their learning journey. This provision may look very different to our other pupils, through differentiation and modification of the curriculum. Our decisions are made in consultation with the SENDCo, Mrs Firth, who advises and supports members of staff with their provision.
The impact of science at West Rainton
Following our lessons, children will develop an in-depth understanding of the world around them and an understanding of how major scientific ideas have played a vital role to prepare them for life in an increasingly scientific and technological world. The children at West Rainton become resilient, independent and curious scientists who ask questions and are eager to find things out for themselves. Through their learning, children will have an awareness of a range of scientific careers available to them. Children will leave for secondary school equipped with the science knowledge and skills needed to succeed in their education and futures.