Science explores the natural, material and physical modern world in which we live. It encourages the asking and answering of big questions such as, where did life come from and are we alone in the universe? Science enables us to develop a sense of self through creative thinking, natural fascination and insatiable curiosity. It promotes observation and the consideration of evidence to draw conclusions rather than the use of preconception or prejudice. Science encourages collaboration, discussion and debate and helps us to form opinions and justify decisions by using and interpreting evidence. Discoveries and ideas in Science affect the way in which people think, feel, create, behave and live. Science allows us to take simple daily encounters and cutting edge technology and create innovative ideas which impact on the future of global development and enterprise. Scientific study is essential to the sustainability and survival of our planet.
“Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known”
Throughout the year the children study the many changes that occur in their outdoor school environment, associated with the seasons. They explore these areas on nature walks and trails, making sense of their understanding by communicating their ideas in writing and drawings. They use these seasonal observations to support the study of Arctic animals, looking specifically at penguins and their habitats. They apply their skills related to animals and habitats when studying Dinosaurs. The children also have regular opportunities to explore the many creatures which inhabit the bug hotel and the surrounding hedgerows.
“Science is nothing, but trained and organised common sense”
Through a range of activities the children investigate movement and experiment using a wide selection of equipment such as ramps, pipes and tubes. They try out their ideas using water, toy cars and other objects. They both verbalise and record their reasoning.
Storytelling is often used to support the experimentation of concepts such as insulating and protecting objects. Making a safe coat for Humpty Dumpty so that he doesn’t crack when he falls, or keeping the 3 Bear’s porridge warm.
The children also explore their own science, investigating using their senses, making observations about their own features and noticing differences and similarities.
The children find out a lot about themselves at the beginning of the year through the exploration of likes and dislikes. They experiment with taste and touch and note differences and similarities with their peers.
As the year progresses the children explore and test the properties of materials, giving reasons regarding their suitability for different purposes. They compare and group together a variety of everyday materials using scientific vocabulary to describe what the materials can do. They use and apply this knowledge to design and create puppets as well as investigating further the use of materials in recycling.
The project ‘Tree-mendous Trouble’ gives children the opportunity to work scientifically identifying common deciduous and non-deciduous trees, comparing leaf size and shape and looking at the habitat a tree provides.
Throughout the year the children observe the changes in the pond, measure the temperature, describe the pattern of change across the seasons and record their observations and findings to draw conclusions.
“We cannot teach people anything; we can only help them discover it within themselves”
The children explore the suitability of materials for the construction of miniature Minpin furniture. They carry out a range of investigations to match the requirements of the object to the properties of the materials. This involves testing, recording and evaluating their findings.
Knowledge about animals is explored through the study of wild animals and their habitats. Children experiment with their own ideas regarding the grouping of animals and sort against classification criteria. through an educational .
Developing understanding of forces is supported by the study of levers and counter balances through a project related to Castles and medieval weaponry. The children practically construct their own models, investigating the forces involved and making adaptations to their designs to enable them to be successful.
An awareness of health and the processes involved in exercising and eating well, are explored through a sports related project. The children look closely at their own health and diet and investigate questions related to exercise, through practical investigations.