Lead: Emma Lister


At Blackgates Primary Academy we offer our children a comprehensive and engaging Science curriculum, which allows them to develop a clear understanding of how science has and will shape our world. We want the children to love science and recognise that it can make the mysterious aspects of life understandable. We want them to leave our setting with a breadth of knowledge, but also to develop skills which allow them to have the capacity to seek out their own answers. By developing our children’s working scientifically skills, conceptual and scientific approaches through conceptual teaching, the children develop a love of investigation and leave us able to raise questions, observe, record data, measure and investigate outcomes. These skills serve to assist our children in later life, and create successful, well-rounded young people.

At Blackgates Primary Academy, we have ensured that our curriculum aligns well with the National Curriculum Science requirements and we believe that the spiral nature of the curriculum allows our children to finish Key Stage 2 with innate science skills developed by a sequence of knowledge through progressive blocks in biology, chemistry and physics. We recognise that children need to have a solid understanding of each set of ideas in order to build on this later in their educational journey. Our children consistently build on the knowledge they have developed previously by revisiting key concepts when building on prior knowledge. We know that it is imperative that skills are taught at certain stages in order to ensure that the children are ready to progress onto the next stage of their understanding.

As a school, we have structured our curriculum in such a way to fully immerse our children in key areas. We want them to make links across subjects and see how the world around them is intrinsically linked. We have therefore linked topic areas to particular elements of the science curriculum. Where these areas do not link, we have dedicated Science Weeks school-wide. These weeks serve to promote the practical elements of science and serve to immerse children in scientific learning. We want to raise the profile of Science in school and promote the skills required to be an excellent scientist.

Whilst we recognise the importance of knowledge, we also believe that fantastic science is underpinned by the importance of Working Scientifically. Scientific enquiry is an essential element of our science teaching and it is embedded throughout our lessons. The skills needed for Working Scientifically are outlined in the National Curriculum in a two step block (KS1 & KS2), and we recognise that these skills must be developed throughout a child’s time in each key stage. Through links to our topics, children are asked to demonstrate the full range of skills and are given opportunities to raise questions, collect, measure, analyse and present data, and reach conclusions.

In EYFS and KS1, we recognise the importance of scientific enquiry and encourage the children to develop their inquisitive minds through hands-on scientific exploration. In Early Years, we believe that play is the most important tool to grow a child’s inquisitive mind and ability to explore. Through a variety of focused areas within the classroom, children are regularly asked to explore new and interesting ideas which stimulate their naturally inquisitive nature. Through this approach we develop the children’s ability to raise questions and seek out their own answers thus beginning their ability to work scientifically from the earliest starting point.

Throughout their time in EYFS, the children begin to advance their understanding of the world around them. They begin by recognising and noticing the seasons, and how the weather changes in accordance with these. This is a daily part of the Science curriculum, which allows them to make links between seasonal changes and the things they notice every day. They investigate the different animals that reside in our country, but also those which live in different landscapes in order to present them with opportunities to raise questions. This allows them from an early age to recognise different habitats of different creatures, and they go on to build on this foundation throughout KS1 by learning about classification in KS1, to naming animal groups in Year 3 and 4, and then going on to develop this to understand how classification began by studying Charles Darwin in Year 6.

As the children progress through EYFS and into KS1, we want to build on their critical thinking skills and develop their ability to investigate questions given to them. They investigate the world around them in further detail, and begin to use scientific vocabulary for animal groups and plant species.

Across all year groups, we want children to incorporate the key elements of working scientifically. The progression of these skills is essential for the next stage of their scientific education, and we recognise that Science is essential to develop our children’s confidence in their own concepts. By the end of Key Stage Two, all children will have developed scientific enquiry skills in the five key areas: Observing changes over time, noticing patterns, grouping and classifying things, finding things out through secondary sources of information and modelling. We want children to be immersed in Science to reinforce the skills that they have previously learned, but then want to build on them by challenging their thinking further.

An example of this is the subject of electricity. Whilst a child learns about this in Year 4, they are building on their prior knowledge of Year 1, 2 and 3 in terms of their understanding of materials. The prior investigation of materials and their knowledge of these, will support their ability to raise questions and carry out simple investigations into how and why a circuit works. They will then develop their investigative skills further by recognising the relationship between the brightness of a lamp and the voltage used. This will allow them to extend their investigative skills further to recognise how variables impact a test, how it is possible to interpret data to show a relationship between two components and how their own theories can be proven wrong, but can still be beneficial.

Through our continual development of the skills required for scientific enquiry, our children leave Key Stage 2 with a well-rounded knowledge of science, but are also active scientists keen to explore their own ideas and answer their own questions.


Science week

This year we completed the British Science Week organisation event as a whole school. Each year group investigated the theme Innovations for the Future. Each class chose something to focus on around this week and had a fun, hands on and exciting week investigating all things science. The week was fantastic, and the children loved it.

Help at home


Does your child want to extend their knowledge of a scientific concept or revisit some learning in school? Follow the links below to visit website to support your child’s learning.