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at Didsbury CE Primary School

“Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less.”
― Marie Curie

Science has changed our lives and is vital to the world’s future prosperity, therefore it is our intent that the children at DCE will engage in a high quality science curriculum. At Didsbury CE School we understand that children are naturally curious, and we encourage this inquisitive nature throughout their time with us and beyond. Science fosters a healthy curiosity in children about our universe and promotes respect for the living and non-living. We believe science encompasses the acquisition of knowledge, concepts, skills and positive attitudes. Through the programmes of study in the National Curriculum science document children will acquire and develop these skills throughout their Primary years and develop their natural curiosity about the world in which they live.

At Didsbury CE School we will ensure that the Working Scientifically skills are built-on and developed throughout their school career so that they can use equipment, conduct experiments, build arguments and explain concepts confidently and continue to ask questions and be curious about their surroundings.

Consequently, the children will have the opportunity to become increasingly proficient and confident at:

  • Being able to ask why?
  • Following their own line of enquire.
  • Developing scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding.
  • Implementing a range of investigations.
  • Understanding the world around them.
  • Developing questioning, reasoning and investigation skills.

A curriculum for life for all 

We are proud of the fact that the ambitious science curriculum at Didsbury CE plays a vital role in equipping each child with the skills and knowledge needed to take advantage of opportunities in later life.  We build upon the high ‘science capital’ that lots of children start with, building in knowledge about the transferability of science, as we know that science 'open doors' to many future careers. Teachers also use precise questioning in class to test conceptual knowledge and skills, and assess children regularly to identify those children with gaps in learning, so that all children, keep up with the challenging science curriculum.
The vocabulary rich, knowledge engaged curriculum provides children with the opportunities to test out their own understand and findings through first hand experiences.  The curriculum content and design provide children with the key scientific knowledge, skills and understanding they need to be ready for their next stage of education.  The exploration, enquiry and independent testing opportunities that thread through our curriculum equip our children, whatever their social background, the soft skills such as critical thinking and teamwork that are vital to success in 21st century Britain. 

Curriculum end points

The science curriculum is designed with clear key knowledge end points at the end of each year, which are then built upon in a spiral curriculum. We build upon the learning and skill development of the previous years. As the children’s knowledge and understanding increases, and they become more proficient in selecting, using scientific equipment, collating and interpreting results, they become increasingly confident in their growing ability to come to conclusions based on real evidence. Key aspects of English such as formal, explanations, detailed descriptions and clear concise writing, as well as a number of aspects of maths, such as graphs, measures and a range of practical skills are contextualised and woven in our science curriculum.  

Curriculum planning and sequencing 

In Didsbury CE we teach Science within a knowledge-engaged curriculum, as a discreet subject to ensure that both the skills and knowledge of the science curriculum are taught to a high level without being diluted by other subjects. Having said that we do make links both cross-curricular and to the wider yearly calendar, to create a greater coherence and context for the children.

Early Years children are taught science through ‘Understanding the World’. Continuous provision is provided for all and children are given opportunities to explore various types of equipment. Often this is child-initiated but on occasion is also completed through adult-led activities. Science is also taught through the change’s children observe in the world around them, for example Ice (when found outside) and ‘habitats – nocturnal/ survival’ in autumn term as this is the time of the year when children are aware of the change in seasons and animals starting to go into hibernation.

Key Stage 1 science is taught in a very practical way, with children being given many opportunities to explore the different concepts that they are learning, whether it’s being given lots of things to taste, touch, smell, look at when exploring senses, or regular trips throughout the year to the local park to compare the changing seasons. They also build upon their ‘understanding of the world’ and continue to develop the understanding that they initially gained in the Early Years. This makes the learning more interactive and concrete for the children. 

Key Stage 2 science is again taught through practical hands on experiences wherever possible, with children being challenged to create their own investigations and follow their own line of enquiry. Science is planned in such a way that it fits in with the seasons, the wider curriculum and following the National Curriculum. The science curriculum is also built upon through the wider curriculum, for example once children have learnt about electricity in Y6, they are then challenge to make their own torch in DT. This understanding is also linked to previous learning in Y4, but also in Y5 where in their history lessons, children learnt all about the Victorians and the first uses of electricity. Furthermore, children in Y5 are challenged to make their own boats, using their understanding of buoyancy, streamlines shapes and counter weights, they are then challenged to write a persuasive letter, explaining why their boat was the best. Children in Y3 use their understand from how to look after their bodies, to create their own healthy pizzas in DT.


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