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‘The important thing is to never stop questioning.’

Albert Einstein

At St Nicolas, science is all about the excitement of understanding the world around us through curiosity, making connections, and enquiry. We are ambitious about the depth of scientific knowledge and vocabulary children develop in biology, chemistry and physics throughout their time with us. We take time to embed this knowledge, and return to it regularly, making links with other subjects. This knowledge becomes the foundation of children's scientific enquiry – planning and undertaking practical investigations to find out more about the world.

Right from Reception, where children’s ‘understand the world’ area of learning informs their explorative play, the ‘working scientifically’ skills of the national curriculum are embedded within each area of science learning. Children predict, find patterns, classify, make comparisons, design fair tests and research independently to seek answers based on what they've learnt, and these investigations deepen their understanding further. They make connections between curriculum areas, using their statistical understanding from mathematics to gather and interpret data, and applying their scientific understanding to design, technology and geography learning. Children learn, explore and use a wide and technical vocabulary right from the start, which they are taught to use precisely and clearly.

What you see:

  • Excited, curious children, exploring, observing, looking for patterns and investigating
  • Practical activities which deepen children’s knowledge
  • Children marvelling in the beauty of our natural world and its scientific processes
  • Connections being made between their science knowledge, personal experiences and other learning

What you hear:

  • Children asking 'why?' and exploring ways to investigate
  • Children using scientific language precisely
  • Detailed, extended explanations informed by the deep scientific knowledge
  • Discussion about the uses of scientific knowledge and enquiry in later life.

From Year 2, Science is taught weekly at St Nicolas, with children working towards the objectives identified for their year group in the national curriculum. Links are made regularly within their science curriculum, but also across other subject areas, and teachers think carefully when to cover each area of the science curriculum to make these connections more meaningful. For example, children in Year One learn about everyday materials in the Autumn Term, and use this knowledge to pose and solve a Design and Technology problem when choosing the best material for making a kite.