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Science Overview 2019 - 2020

Science at English Martyrs’

HANDS ON, MINDS ON!

 

At English Martyrs’ Catholic School, Science is an exciting and engaging core subject in which all children thrive through enjoyment and curiosity. There is a real buzz amongst pupils for the subject; we have successfully raised its profile through enrichment, whilst ensuring access to a high-quality Science education. With practical investigations at the heart of the curriculum, we create a ‘hands on, mind on’ approach allowing children to learn through questioning, exploration, analysis and explanation.

 

Our Science curriculum is also underpinned by the understanding of: we are ‘Global Citizens’ and commit to the 17 Global Goals set by the UN to be reached by 2030. Through Science lessons, we make ourselves aware of our impact on the world around us and consider ways in which we can contribute towards achieving some of these goals – in hope for a better future for our planet and all its inhabitants.

 

INTENT:

 

At English Martyrs’, in conjunction with the National Curriculum, our Science teaching offers opportunities for pupils to:

  • develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics
  • develop understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science through different types of science enquiries that help them to answer scientific questions about the world around them
  • be equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future

 

​​​​​​​With the above in mind, we intend to:

  • Create Scientists and ‘global citizens’ through a well-planned and sequenced curriculum
  • Prepare our pupils for future learning and employment
  • Ensure that ALL learners are given the opportunity to gain knowledge and cultural capital to succeed
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IMPLEMENTATION:

 

Teachers create a positive attitude to Science learning within their classrooms and reinforce an expectation that all children are capable of achieving high standards in this core subject. Our whole school approach to the teaching and learning of Science involves the following;

  • Firstly, we ensure that staff subject knowledge is continuously being strengthened so that a well-sequenced and planned curriculum can be designed: a curriculum that builds on prior knowledge, focuses on key scientific vocabulary and concepts, makes links to other subjects within the curriculum whilst preempting and addressing misconceptions.
  • We build upon the learning and skills development of the previous years. As the children’s knowledge and understanding increases, and they become more proficient in selecting and using scientific equipment, collating and interpreting results, they become increasingly confident in their growing ability to come to conclusions based on real evidence.
  • Pupils at English Martyrs’ learn about natural phenomena through a range of teaching strategies, including practical investigations, which are at the heart of the teaching and learning of Science. In order to encourage a ‘hands on, minds on’ approach to learning, teachers plan lessons which ensure pupils are exposed to all 5 types of enquiry and are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science today and for the future. Stimulating experiments not only allow for the pupils to practice working scientifically skills but also act as hooks for our pupils, However, we are committed to ensuring that our children can articulate the Scientific explanations behind all the excitement and can retain that knowledge rather than just have the memory of a ‘fun’ task.
  • Wherever possible, in order to further enhance and embed the learning, Science is linked to other subjects within the curriculum providing a range of contexts and allowing pupils to make connections.
  • With our high intake of children learning EAL, we place an emphasis on speaking and listening skills, supporting pupils to articulate their understanding with the use of correct scientific vocabulary and sentence starters.
  • A range of strategies (auditory, kinesthetic, visual and tactile) are used to ensure all learners, including those with SEND, are able to access the Science curriculum and achieve their potential.
  • We understand that assessing is done best while pupils are ‘doing science’ and not when science is over, therefore, timely and focused assessment are carried out in order to identify specific areas for development and to plan subsequent lessons.
  • Science is continually changing our lives and is vital to the world’s future prosperity – at English Martyrs’, we highlight this endless development to the children at every given opportunity and create openings for pupils to learn about possible careers in Science through community links and connections with national agencies such as the STEM association.
  • A buzz and excitement for the subject has been created through a range of enrichment opportunities - Mad Science Day + Fair which always involves parents and families/ The Great Science Share/ World Oceans Day/ The Black Hole Planetarium/ Science Reading Challenge/ Animal Man etc…
  • On our journey towards being fantastic learners, we aim to inspire each pupil to raise their aspirations by exploring all areas of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths). We realise, and ensure the children do too, that we could have among us today some future scientists, engineers etc… who will make life changing discoveries and developments to make our world a better place!
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IMPACT:

 

The successful approach at English Martyrs’ results in a fun, engaging, high-quality Science education, that provides children with the foundations and knowledge for understanding the world. The impact of a well-designed curriculum, coupled with outstanding teaching, leads to articulate, knowledgeable and skilled young Scientists who are ready to move on to their next topic, year group, phase, or beyond English Martyrs’. The learning that takes place in our ‘laboratories’ is also showcased though our floor books, independent assessment activities, but largely through our eloquent young scientists. 

Mad Science Day 2019

We started our day with an assembly to set the 'DISCOVER and EXPLORE' scene and to reflect on our school VIRTUES and the GLOBAL GOALS...

EM Science Fair 2019

The Great Science Share June 2019

Birmingham City University

The Great Science Share - Pioneered in Manchester - Making a Difference  UK-Wide

 

This year we have had the honour of taking part in 'The Great Science Share' which is a national programme of events designed to inspire young people into Science and Engineering. This satellite science-fair-style event was held at the Nelson Mandela school and involved 6 other local schools. Our children represented English Martyrs' really well, especially when facilitating others to participate in their experiments. 

Every school was asked to come up with 2 investigations that they could set up and help others to explore...

 

Year 6's Question: Does a layer of fat really keep the cold out?

 

A messy, buttery experiment to prove the theory of blubber acting as insulation!

 

Year 4's Question: Can you put a skewer through a balloon without popping it?; Can you put a skewer through a water-filled bag without getting wet?

 

A super exciting challenge - not only was it fun to have a go at, but our children explained the science behind it articulately using all the right scientific vocabulary!  

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After last year's sensational Mad Science Day and Fair, we decided that it had to be an annual event at English Martyrs'...

This year's theme: DISCOVER + EXPLORE linked perfectly with our school virtues of ACTIVE + CURIOUS

We are Polar Explorers!

We have been really fortunate to be involved in the Polar Explorer Programme launched by STEM Learning (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics) which encourages and supports schools who are keen to raise aspirations and attainment in STEM subjects and aims to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers. 

 

About the Polar Explorer programme

In 2014, the Government announced a £200 million investment for a new polar research ship. The RRS Sir David Attenborough will enable world-leading research in Antarctica and the Arctic for the next 25 years.

 

With funding from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) STEM are using the build, launch and operation of RRS Sir David Attenborough to bring an exciting new context to the teaching of STEM subjects.

 

Schools will gain the support of a Polar Ambassador, a specially selected STEM professional, who will help to enrich the teaching of STEM subjects in primary schools.

 

Thank you to Dr Simon Sheriden (specialist in Space Science) - our STEM Ambassador - who has supported us this year during exciting Science events. 

Year 3's Polar Explorer Day with Simon - a REAL scientist and a STEM Ambassador

Year 3's Polar Explorer Day with Simon - a REAL scientist and a STEM Ambassador 1
Year 3's Polar Explorer Day with Simon - a REAL scientist and a STEM Ambassador 2
Year 3's Polar Explorer Day with Simon - a REAL scientist and a STEM Ambassador 3

Year 1 as Polar Explorers

Year 1 as Polar Explorers 1

Science Fair 2017 - Check out our stations...

Our trip to the BIG BANG Science Fair @ the NEC - 2017

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