At West Hill, we believe that Science is a key part of the Curriculum. In Key Stage One, the children participate in an hour and a half of Science a week and this is developed further to two hours a week in Key Stage Two. We recognise that a high quality science education opens the doors for a good understanding of the world around us. We look at a range of specific disciplines such as: biology, chemistry and physics. In our teaching we encourage the children to recognise how science has changed the world around us. We also endeavour to develop higher order thinking through both questioning and investigations. We are also keen to develop the children’s enthusiasm around the subject through extra-curricular activities such as visits from the Science Dome.
Through their work in Science our Key Stage One children explore the following topics: plants, animals, everyday materials, living things and their habitats and seasonal change. These topics are covered over a two year cycle.
During Key Stage 1, pupils observe, explore and ask questions about living things, materials and phenomena. They begin to work together to collect evidence to help them answer questions and to link this to simple scientific ideas. They evaluate evidence and consider whether tests or comparisons are fair. They use reference materials to find out more about scientific ideas. They share their ideas and communicate them using scientific language, drawings, charts and tables.
The children in Key Stage Two build on their understanding of scientific concepts through revisiting topics and also being introduced to new topics. They cover the following topics: plants, animals, living things and their habitats, evolution and inheritance, properties and changes of materials, states of matter, rocks, sound, light, forces and magnets, electricity and Earth and space. They cover these over the four years and through these topics continue to develop their scientific skills.
During Key Stage 2 pupils learn about a wider range of living things, materials and phenomena. They begin to make links between ideas and to explain things using simple models and theories. They apply their knowledge and understanding of scientific ideas to familiar phenomena, everyday things and their personal health. They begin to think about the positive and negative effects of scientific and technological developments on the environment and in other contexts. They carry out more systematic investigations, working on their own and with others. They use a range of reference sources in their work. They talk about their work and its significance, and communicate ideas using a wide range of scientific language, conventional diagrams, charts and graphs.
The collection and subsequent use of data allows them to use first-hand experience to present and explain what they have found out developing their maths and computing skills. Many aspects of English are used throughout the science curriculum from working in small groups and communicating with their peers to the reporting of their findings verbally and in written formats. In certain topics links with other curricular areas can also be seen such as the use of electrical circuits in DT, sound in music and health and the body in PSHE.