‘It is important to view knowledge as sort of a semantic tree – make sure you understand the fundamental principles, i.e. the trunk and big branches, before you get into the leaves/details or there is nothing for them to hang on to.’
At Fairburn we believe science provides the foundations for understanding the world. Science has been and continues to be influential in changing the world, requiring our children to be equipped with the skills and understanding to influence the world they live in.
At Fairburn we harness the children’s natural curiosity about the world around them. Within Science children are encouraged and supported to question and investigate, using a range of lines of enquiry whilst exploring a full range of scientific concepts.
Our Science Curriculum
Science is taught beginning with the key concepts of the National Curriculum and expanding into the real world, both near to home and further afield. We utilise environments outside the classroom to ensure children make real life connections. Children have the opportunity to speak with real people currently working within field. Stem Ambassadors are regularly utilized to enhance the subjects taught. Links are regularly made to famous scientists, past and present, related to the current topic being taught, so making real life links.
We strongly believe in the hands-on approach, with children thinking and acting as scientists. Children are encouraged and supported to make choices, conduct their own investigations to explore and answer their own questions, making predictions of possible outcomes and discuss their relevance to the initial questions asked. We equip the children with enquiry based skills including:
- pattern seeking
- classifying and grouping
- comparative and fair testing (controlled investigations)
- researching using secondary sources.
What does teaching and learning look like?
Science is central to how we deliver the Understanding the world component of the Early Years framework. We provide a wealth of opportunities and support for our children to explore and expand their knowledge of their place in the world. We enable them to experience a range of settings and perspectives first hand, directing them to use their senses and emotions to interpret place and space.
Science is taught progressively, new learning building upon previous experiences. By referring back and making connections to the current topic, children have the opportunity to gain a greater ‘mastery’ of concepts taught.
Children are encouraged and supported in their thinking as scientists throughout their time with us. The skills of “Working Scientifically” and “Science Enquiry” are deeply embedded, ensuring these skills are developed and nurtured in both key stages. We encourage confidence and competence through a range of practical skills, ensuring the children are confident to ask their own questions, plan and structure experiments, build arguments and explain concepts.
Science is delivered through weekly lessons across both key stages, based on the National Curriculum programs of study, broadened to encompass our local and wider area alongside children’s experiences and immediate knowledge. We follow a long term curriculum plan, see below, reviewed yearly to ensure it’s relevance and coverage.
What do Children think?
“Science is really fun because of all the experiments we get to do. We watch videos and do activities that really help us to understand what we are learning”.