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At St Thomas Catholic Primary School, our intent for Science is for our children:

  • to enjoy science by ensuring that lessons are engaging and fun.
  • to ask questions about their world by building on their natural curiosity.
  • to develop their scientific knowledge and find answers through first-hand experience and practical investigations.
  • to ensure they are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to help take their learning further.
  • to have access to the language and vocabulary of science.
  • to develop their science capital.


Science is taught throughout the school in weekly lessons and is delivered by class

teachers. The school follows the Kent Scheme of Work which covers 28 units of study linked to the National Curriculum and supports teachers with their lesson planning. Each of the units shows progression in the key scientific knowledge and concepts required from Year 1 to Year 6. Other sources may also be used to enhance the lessons in order to meet the needs of the children. The Kent Scheme of Work also contains the most appropriate scientific vocabulary to be used when studying a particular area of science, a list of the scientists who are working, or have worked, in that particular area of science and practical activities to support the learning.




In Foundation Stage, children engage in scientific activities through their study and acquirement of Understanding the World (UW). Reception pupils follow the Early Years Curriculum for UW and are assessed initially against Development Matters criteria, moving to the Early Years Profile towards the end of their Reception year.

Science is developed through purposeful play based experiences which are represented in a variety of indoor and outdoor environments. This involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment. Photographic evidence and discussions with the children are a main aspect of science learning in EYFS.



Key Stage 1

The principal focus of science teaching in Key Stage 1 is to enable pupils to experience and observe phenomena, looking more closely at the natural and humanly-constructed world around them. During years 1 and 2, pupils should be taught to use the following practical scientific methods, processes and skills through the teaching of the programme of study content:


  • Asking simple questions and recognising that they can be answered in different ways.
  • Observing closely, using simple equipment.
  • Performing simple tests.
  • Identifying and classifying.
  • Using their observations and ideas to suggest answers to questions.
  • Gathering and recording data to help in answering questions.


These will be taught through the following topics:

  • Plants.
  • Animals including humans.
  • Everyday materials.
  • Living things and their habitats
  • Seasonal changes (ongoing throughout the year).
  • Uses of everyday materials.

Lower Key Stage 2

The principal focus of science teaching in years 3 & 4 is to enable pupils to broaden their scientific view of the world around them. They should do this through:


  • Setting up simple practical enquiries, comparative and fair tests.
  • Making systematic and careful observations and, where appropriate, taking accurate measurements using standard units, using a range of equipment, including thermometers and data loggers.
  • Gathering, recording, classifying and presenting data in a variety of ways to help in answering questions.
  • Recording findings using simple scientific language, drawings, labelled diagrams, keys, bar charts, and tables.
  • Reporting on findings from enquiries, including oral and written explanations, displays or presentations of results and conclusions.
  • Using results to draw simple conclusions, make predictions for new values, suggest improvements and raise further questions.
  • Identifying differences, similarities or changes related to simple scientific ideas and processes.
  • Using straightforward scientific evidence to answer questions or to support their findings.


These will be taught through the following topics:

  • Plants
  • Animals including humans
  • Everyday materials
  • Rocks
  • Light
  • Forces and magnets
  • Living things and their habitats
  • Electricity
  • Sound
  • States of matter



Upper Key Stage 2

The principal focus of science teaching in upper Key Stage 2 is to enable pupils to develop a deeper understanding of a wide range of scientific ideas. They should do this through:


  • Planning different types of scientific enquiries to answer questions, including recognising and controlling variables where necessary.
  • Taking measurements, using a range of scientific equipment, with increasing accuracy and precision, taking repeat readings when appropriate.
  • Recording data and results of increasing complexity using scientific diagrams and labels, classification keys, tables, scatter graphs, bar and line graphs.
  • Using test results to make predictions to set up further comparative and fair tests.
  • Reporting and presenting findings from enquiries, including conclusions, causal relationships and explanations of and degree of trust in results, in oral and written forms such as displays and other presentations.
  • Identifying scientific evidence that has been used to support or refute ideas or arguments.


These will be taught through the following topics:

  • Living things and their habitats
  • Animals including humans
  • Properties and changes of materials
  • Earth and Space
  • Forces
  • Evolution and Inheritance
  • Light
  • Electricity



Teachers need to also read and apply the non-statutory guidance within the National Curriculum, to broaden the skills of the children within their class. Children will be involved in a variety of structured activities and in more open ended investigative work including:


  • Activities to develop good observational skills.
  • Practical activities using measuring instruments which will develop their ability to read scales accurately.
  • Structured activities to develop understanding of a scientific concept and open ended investigations.



Progress is monitored by the SLT and Science Subject Leader through book looks to ensure consistency, progression, coverage and a balance between teacher led and practical activities and moderation amongst year groups.


In Years 1 to 6, class teachers are expected to assess children to determine if they are working towards the expected standard in each unit. Children are assessed against their knowledge and also their ability to work scientifically, using the St Thomas Science Assessment Steps Documents. This gives an in depth understanding and overview of the class, whether they are strong at their knowledge of scientific units or ability to carry out an investigation.

In Foundation Stage, where science content is delivered through the ‘Understanding of the World’ strand of the EYFS curriculum, learning objectives are built into everyday teaching, questioning techniques and the children’s environment. They are assessed according to the Early Learning Goals.

The St Thomas Science FS Assessment Steps Document is used to link EYFS with the Year One Science Curriculum topics.


Teachers are to update the Science Assessment Tracker with the completed assessment levels so outcomes can be reviewed and any anomalies discussed between the class teacher and the Science Subject Leader. This ensures that any children not meeting year group expectations are identified and support can be put in place. These assessment levels are then passed up with the cohort so future teachers are aware of the strengths and weaknesses of the class. This gives teachers a strong understanding of whether certain objectives may need revising before knowledge is built on. Teachers at St Thomas Catholic Primary School build on prior learning instead of teaching each unit in isolation.