Neville's Cross Primary School & Nursery

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At Neville‘s Cross, we recognise the importance of science in all aspects of our lives.   It is our intention in Science to increase children’s knowledge and understanding of our world and to develop children’s ideas and ways of working that enable them to explore and make sense of the world around them.  We will develop in our children the understanding that science is a process of enquiry beginning with a spark in their curiosity or from questions such as ‘how?’ and ‘why?’. Children will be taught to think and work like a ‘scientist’. 

At Neville’s Cross Primary we want our children to display the characteristics of a scientist. We teach science so that our pupils:

  • Think independently and raise questions about working scientifically and the knowledge and skills that it brings.
  • Acquire, use and embed appropriate vocabulary related to the units taught. Use the appropriate vocabulary and build upon it throughout their career as a scientist at Neville’s Cross
  • Challenge common misconceptions as they come across them
  • Are confident and competent in the full range of practical skills, taking the initiative in, for example, planning and carrying out scientific investigations.
  • Demonstrate excellent scientific knowledge and understanding in written and verbal explanations, solving challenging problems and reporting scientific findings.
  • Are passionate about science and its application in past, present and future technologies.

Our science curriculum is designed with our key curriculum drivers in mind: 

Creativity – we aim to foster our children’s natural curiosity and allow them to develop an understanding that science involves both discovery and creation. 

Well-being – we aim to support our children in achieving their full potential, to develop their scientific abilities to the full. 

Our Communities – we aim to develop links with scientists within our school and local community as well as developing an understanding of how science impacts upon communities both locally, nationally and world-wide.


Working Scientifically

Our Science units of work are carefully planned to encourage children to work scientifically.  Our units are planned to ensure children develop and build on these skills as they move through school.  We encourage children to recognise the skills they are using through our 'Science Superhero' approach.  

Observing over time – Spy Magnus

Scientists sometimes need to observe things over time. How often you need to look depends on what is being observed. If you observe the effect of heat on an ice cream, changes will happen quickly so you'll need to observe without any interruption. If you observe tadpoles or trees, it will take weeks and months to observe any changes. You will need to use a variety of approaches to answer your specific questions.

Fair testing - Supergirl

When you are testing something, you need to make sure it is a fair test. To do this everything should be the same except the thing you are testing.

Fair testing finds relationships between factors (variables). A single variable is changed while keeping other variables the same. Any differences are said to be the result of the changed variable.

This method is most easily suited to technology investigations, for example, ‘Which paper towel can soak up the greatest volume of water?’ Fair testing is particularly well suited to investigations that record measurements.

Identifying and classifying - Commander Classify

Identifying and classifying involves sorting objects or events into groups or categories. Clear systems (criteria) must be developed and used. Keys are often used as criteria to carry out a classifying process, for example, identifying and naming plants. Living things can be sorted into groups, or classifications, by asking a series of 'yes or no' questions. This will tell you what type of animal you're looking at.

Pattern seeking – Captain Peeko

This method involves observing and recording natural events, or carrying out experiments where the variables can’t easily be controlled. Pattern-seeking involves observing, recording and analysing the data. These patterns give you clues that you can analyse and they can help you draw some conclusions.

In pattern seeking, it is still important to note and record variables. The investigator needs to try to identify patterns that result from these variables.

Pattern seeking can also help us create models to explain observations, for example, to explain the phases of the Moon.

Researching – Billy Bookhead

Some things are difficult to research for yourself but somebody else might know the answer.

You can search online, look in books and watch television to find out the answer. These are secondary sources of information because it is somebody else's research.

Researching involves gathering and analysing other people’s opinions or scientific findings in order to answer a question or to provide background information to help explain observed events.

Research can also show how scientists’ ideas have changed over time as new evidence has been found.

Science in the Early Years 

In the Early years, science is taught through the children learning about the world around them in their learning through play.The focus in EYFS is about developing scientific language from an early age with an aim that children can use this scientific language confidently and accurately. They will also have lots of opportunities to investigate independently and as part of adult focussed activities. These investigations will be designed to develop enquiry skills and spark children’s interests. 

Science in Key Stage 1 and 2 

Our school curriculum aims to fully meet the requirements as set out in the National Curriculum Programme of Study for Science.  Please see below for our Long Term Plans.

Science in key Stage 1

Science is planned to ensure children are able to progressively develop and deepen their scientific knowledge and enquiry skills as they move through school.  Children will develop a strong scientific vocabulary, building on their firm foundations in the EYFS.  We offer regular problem solving opportunities that allow children to find out for themselves.  Across KS1 children will find out about properties and uses of everyday materials, seasonal changes and weather, plants, living things and their habitats and animals including humans.

Science in key Stage 2

Children become more familiar with the three main strands of science; physics, chemistry and biology.  We continue to support children in developing and broadening their scientific vocabulary and across KS2 children continue to develop their scientific knowledge and skills.  We continue to provide regular opportunities for enquiry based learning; linking skills and knowledge from other subjects where possible.  These opportunities take place both indoors and outdoors and children begin to develop their understanding of science not always being predictable!  We continue to challenge those common misconceptions and allow our children time and scope to discover and explain their findings.

Learning Links 

Throughout EYFS and across both KS1 and KS2 children will have the opportunity to make links with learning in other subject areas.  For example, using their knowledge of electrical circuits within a design and technology project or extending their knowledge of rocks and soils when learning about mining in the local area.  Where possible, teaching and learning will be practical. We will use our school grounds and locality within our programme of teaching and learning. 

Additional opportunities are provided in Science, such as celebrating Science Week, whole school science workshop afternoons led by visitors andeducational visits linked to the science curriculum.


As a result of strong teaching and learning in Science, children will have a sound understanding of how Science works in the world around them, what it is to be a scientist and they will have the skills to investigate scientific questions, answering them in an accurate and systematic way.