Science at The Wilfred Owen is a practical subject, which is focussed on enquiry and problem solving. Through teaching science, we challenge children to ask and answer questions about the World around them and to consider the impact science has on every day lives. We will encourage discussion and debate about the moral and ethical implications of investigations and scientific discoveries; consideration of the impact on life and the planet and regard to science as a potential career. We will explore scientific developments and key scientists and the impact they have had on progress and development over time.
As a scientist, a child at The Wilfred Owen School will develop these essential characteristics:
- The ability to think independently and raise questions about working scientifically and the knowledge and skills that it brings.
- Confidence and competence in the full range of practical skills, taking the initiative in, for example, planning and carrying out scientific investigations.
- Excellent scientific knowledge and understanding which is demonstrated in written and verbal explanations, solving challenging problems and reporting scientific findings.
- High levels of originality, imagination or innovation in the application of skills.
- The ability to undertake practical work in a variety of contexts, including fieldwork.
- A passion for science and its application in past, present and future technologies.
- This concept involves learning the methodologies of the discipline of science. At The Wilfred Owen School, science will be based on Enquiry and practical experiments and tests. Children will experience a range of different types of enquiry, which will enable them to develop key skills, which they will rely on in Key Stage 3 and 4.
- Understand plants
This concept involves becoming familiar with different types of plants, their structure and reproduction.
- Understand animals and humans
This concept involves becoming familiar with different types of animals, humans and the life processes they share.
- Investigate living things
This concept involves becoming familiar with a wider range of living things, including insects and understanding life processes.
- Understand evolution and inheritance
This concept involves understanding that organisms come into existence, adapt, change and evolve and become extinct.
- Investigate materials
This concept involves becoming familiar with a range of materials, their properties, uses and how they may be altered or changed.
- Understand movement, forces and magnets
This concept involves understanding what causes motion.
- Understand the Earth’s movement in space
This concept involves understanding what causes seasonal changes, day and night.
- Investigate light and seeing
This concept involves understanding how light and reflection affect sight.
- Investigate sound and hearing
This concept involves understanding how sound is produced, how it travels and how it is heard.
- Understand electrical circuits
This concept involves understanding circuits and their role in electrical applications.
Science at The Wilfred Owen School
Science will be taught weekly and will, where possible link to the context of the theme being covered to develop understanding in real life contexts and application of science to develop enquiry skills.
Science will follow a cycle for each area of study. This will link to the work on metacognition, which is recognised through EEF research to have an impact on acquisition of knowledge and learning. Each block will be delivered through 3 enquiries or investigations. These will be based on a ‘Big Question’ and will focus on a specific type of enquiry, under the following headings,
- Comparative tests
- Controlling variables
- Identify & Classify
- Observation over time
- Pattern Seeking
The first, ‘I do’ investigation will be teacher modelled, so key concepts, skills and knowledge can be demonstrated. Teachers will model the planning, testing and write up stages, so children have a clear idea of how to plan an investigation. Each cycle will focus on a specific enquiry skill so that across the year, children will have been exposed to many different types of enquiry.
The second investigation will be based on ‘we do’ metacognition approach. The whole class will work together in planning an investigation. This will then be carried out by the children under supervision and control of the teacher. Misconceptions about scientific working and methods for recording can be addressed at this point.
Finally, children will work on the ‘You do’ investigation. They will independently plan, test and write up their investigation. This can be done as individuals, working as a group or working as a class. At this point the teacher will be assessing skills, knowledge and understanding and asking questions to further challenge and explain scientific processes. Children’s independent enquiries may be linked to a teacher led question or could be linked to a question or idea of a child. Questions and ideas about further investigations will often come up as children are discussing a topic or theme. Teachers will need to make note of these ideas so they can be revisited at the end of the cycle during the independent enquiry.
Through varying ability groupings, using Kagan strategies and the ‘I do, we do and you do’ cycle of investigations, children of all abilities and levels will be supported through investigations, practical work and producing written explanations, write ups and plans.
Each unit of work will be introduced with a pre-test. This will be a short, focussed test on the area of study, to inform teacher’s planning, to identify gaps in learning and discover misconceptions. At the end of each unit a post-test will be used to assess the learning throughout the block, measure progress and identify targets for children in subsequent units of work.
A tracking grid, linked to the milestones/ objectives for the term will be used to show whether a child is Working towards (WTS), Expected (EXS) or Greater Depth (GDS).
This assessment information can be tracked on Insight and will support staff in giving children an end of Key Stage level in Science.