Science 2014…
and beyond
• 9:30 Introduction
• 9:45 Principles for teaching science
• 10:30 Break
• 10:45 Curriculum 2014
• 12:00 Lunch
• 1:00 Assessment for learning in science
• 1:45 Skills, differentiation and recording
• 2:15 Break
• 2:45 Planning and Reflection time
The Principles of science
teaching and learning…
Science is going well when…
• As a table can you group your cards
into types/ saying the same thing?
• Can you give a heading/area for each
• Can you as a group arrive at a list of 57 principles for teaching science?
John Ball’s Seven Principles of Science
When we do science:
 We need to learn through practical ‘hands on’
investigations as much as we can.
We need questions to investigate, make us think,
understand and progress.
We need to learn together collaboratively and learn from
each other.
We need the teacher to be enthusiastic and
knowledgeable about the topic.
We need great resources to help us learn.
We need to learn within familiar contexts we recognise
and can relate to.
Whenever we can, we also need to learn outside the
classroom and by having science visitors in school.
Stick to your principles!
Children should be learning science through
active investigations and enquiry based
Children should be encouraged to argue
about and debate science concepts ...a lot!
Children should be encouraged to be
scientific and ask questions about the world
around them!
Floating Questions
Encouraging children to formulate
questions and assessing what they know.
A bowl of water
Plastic weights
A sandwich box
A box
Scaffold if you need to
• Can you use it to …?
• Does it…?
• Does it look…?
Encouraging questioning
Do you use any of
these techniques?
Do you have some
good ideas?
Maintaining Curiosity
“Physicians take an oath that commits
them to ‘first do no harm.’ The best
science teachers set out to ‘first
maintain curiosity’ in their pupils.”
Ofsted 2013
Key Findings (in a nutshell):
• Best schools – teachers and pupils understood the
‘big ideas’ of science.
Achievement highest when pupils involved in fully
planning, carrying out and evaluating
investigations suggested themselves.
Schools often lacked sufficient differentiation.
The quality of feedback to pupils to enhance
learning often poor.
Literacy teaching with interesting and imaginative
science contexts worked well.
Failure to ensure full coverage of the science NC.
Outstanding when teachers and subject leaders
had received science-specific training.
A survey of 91 primary schools…
The best teaching was:
• driven by determined subject leadership that put
scientific enquiry at the heart of science teaching
and coupled it with substantial expertise in how
pupils learn science.
set out to sustain pupils’ natural curiosity, so that
they were eager to learn the subject content as well
as develop the necessary investigative skills.
was informed by accurate and timely assessment of
how well pupils were developing their understanding
of science concepts, and their skills in analysis and
interpretation so that teaching could respond to and
extend pupils’ learning.
How do pupils learn science?
• Understanding their own ideas –
confront own predispositions.
• Exploring/noticing/observing.
• Identifying/classifying/pattern
• Questioning theirs and others ideas.
• Testing/experimentation/research.
• Discussion/dialogue/argument
• They don’t learn much by being
Charles Darwin
“I love fools'
experiments. I am
always making them.”
…I think that I am
superior to the common
run of men in noticing
things which easily
escape attention, and in
observing them
Common weaknesses found:
• activities did not match each pupil’s
prior learning, so that some pupils
wasted time or did not complete work.
• pupils became disengaged from
learning and more able pupils in
particular were not given work that
was challenging enough.
• teachers failed to provide pupils with
feedback that really helped them to
improve their work.
How do you teach science
• Understand pupil’s prior learning
– what they know and can do
• Meet the accessibility and
challenge needs.
• Give feedback causing thinking
and that affects learning.
How are these three areas in your school?
Break before…..
The new
Aims of the new science curriculum
To ensure that pupils:
• develop scientific knowledge and conceptual
understanding through biology/chemistry/physics.
• develop understanding of the nature, processes and
methods of science through different types of
enquiry that help answer questions about the world
around them.
• Are equipped with the scientific knowledge to
understand the uses and implications of science
today and in the future.
Scientifically literate members of society if nothing
Let’s take a look then discuss!
New Curriculum integration!
Things to consider:
• Is introduction of the new curriculum in your school
development/improvement plan? (SIP)
Do you have an action plan for science?
Have you talked to staff yet? Topic changes ahead.
Are there training/ CPD areas needed?
Do the resources you have meet the needs of the
new NC? (E.g. data loggers)
How will you track pupil’s progress in science?
Don’t forget schools must publish the curriculum on
their website!
Discuss – note down areas of need!
NC 2013
Origins of new National Curriculum
• ASE Late 1990 research into primary
science enquiry.
• 2000s ASE Primary Science
Committee initiate writing on
primary science enquiry.
• 2011 – Is it fair or not?
• 2012 – Redraft primary science NC
builds on ASE work from 15 years
ago. Anne Goldsworthy and Brenda
Keogh work on draft.
Stuart Naylor
What’s the same
• Most of the subject knowledge and
• A balance of science and content
• Most topics come up more than once,
so there is progression.
(Don’t throw away your schemes of
work – they might be useful!)
Content that’s gone…
• Understanding of common life processes gone from
KS1 – moved to more detailed in KS2 (e.g. digestive
The role of drugs as medicines.
Care for the environment and sensitivity to other
people animals.
The effect of rest and exercise of pulse rate.
Role of micro-organisms
Care of teeth.
Forces – (opposing forces, measurement and
identification of direction. (Too abstract – Piaget
and abstract thought).
Does this mean we can’t teach it?
• No!
• The curriculum is a ‘minimum
entitlement’ for pupils. We have a duty
to expand on it!
• It’s a mastery curriculum –simplified to
ensure as many complete and achieve.
• The expectation is that the teacher
ensures all ‘get it’ while allowing others
to go deeper/ follow own enquires.
“Not moving on, but moving out”
Jane Maloney, SLC
• Greater emphasis on scientific language (e.g. deciduous
and evergreen)
Seasonal changes (Yr1)
Microhabitats (Yr2)
Sources of food (Yr2)
Fossils (Yr3)
Soil formation (Yr3)
Changing environments (Yr4)
Digestive system (Yr4)
Temperature at which changes occur (Yr4)
Knowledge of different lifecycles (Yr5)
Lever, pulleys and gears (Yr5)
Identifying animals groups , e.g. amphibians (Yr5)
Transpiration of nutrients and water within animals (Yr6)
Evolution and inheritance (Yr6)
More explicit understanding of light and the formation of
shadows (Yr6)
What else is new?
• ‘Working scientifically’ and emphasis
on different types of enquiry.
• More naming and identifying things
(especially in KS1).
• More on using outdoor environment.
• Some reference to how scientific
ideas have changed over time.
• Some content moved to different
year groups.
• Working scientifically is more than
fair testing – it includes different
types of enquiry e.g. observation.
• The purpose of working scientifically
is to answer scientific questions –
enquiry based learning.
• The non-statutory guidance
illustrates how working scientifically
might apply in each topic.
• Fair testing and other types of enquiry
provide far more opportunities for
• Working scientifically underpins all of
the subject knowledge topics.
• Working scientifically in three phases –
more progressive/ depth to progression
over time.
• Strong emphasis in guidance on
effective teaching and learning – read it!
Planning issues
• In KS2 there are five areas in each
year not six and there are four in
• The PoS study can be studied over
two years not just year group.
• Phase group skills progression.
• The topic of seasonal change will
stretch across a year.
Our extra half terms! Ideas?
• Take longer over each topic?
• Make one double length topic?
• Use the final half term for revision,
consolidation and extension?
• Independent (pairs or groups) study
some of the question that came up
during the year?
• Create your own topic?
• Do something adventurous – class
science newspaper/documentary/show
The Local Environment!
‘Pupils should use the local
environment throughout the year to
explore and answer questions about
“They should raise and answer
questions about the local
….”including those in the local
Every year group should be
out and about!
• Local habitats near you?
• Class photo diary of a habitat.
• Yearly science diary – half term
survey of an area.
• Every year group should be outside
poking around at least three times a
Mastery more than spiralling
“While it is important pupils make
progress, it is also vitally important
that they develop secure
understanding of each key block of
knowledge and concepts in order to
progress to the next stage. Insecure,
superficial understanding will not
allow genuine progression…” p3
Nuffield and ASE developing a
framework for assessment:
• Use ordinary classroom work to
assess against learning objective –
achieved/not achieved/exceeded
• Summary judgements at the end of
each topic using this information.
• Overall you’ll have a yearly summary
of progress.
• Internal and external moderation.
• DfE exemplars
Assessment continued…
• No levels!
• Schools ‘free to use their own approach.’
• Schools still required to identify what
children have learnt and what progress
they are making, report to parents and
provide end of key stage judgements.
Ofsted will use whatever assessment
information school provide.
DfE will provide examples of good
Almost certainly National sampling.
What we already know about
• More evidence isn’t always better
• All assessment involve professional
• Professional judgement need to be
justified in terms of process used, not
amount of evidence accumulated.
• Evidence suggest AFL improves
learning too!
• Some teachers
may approach
mastery type
curriculum as a
tick list exercise
rather than
using it as a
basis for
• We must teach
children to be
• Pupils with gaps will never catch up
unless teachers assess well and
ensure attainment targets have been
Assessing under the new
• Plan in assessment opportunities as
you teach.
• Focus on scientific enquiry.
• Use an on-going assessment system
and record keeping.
• Use quizzes and mini tests for specific
knowledge occasionally.
• Go back over points that need
Moderation will be important
• Take each point in the Pos.
• Is the child working towards/achieving
or exceeding?
Example: Compare and group together
different kinds of rocks on the basis of their
appearance and simple physical properties.
What could this look like at these 3 stages?
Assessment for learning in
• Assessment should be part of the
learning process.
• Assessing is done best while pupils
are ‘doing science’ and not when
science is over!
• Plan for it, look for it, ask for it and
record it as you go.
Make assessment part of teaching
Plan in your assessment opportunities
Make assessment part of teaching
Make discovery and enquiry the basis of
science lessons – then you're assessing
authentic science skills and knowledge as
you teach! Questions!
Your concept cartoon.
• What do you think!
• How, when, where might you use
concept cartoons?
Ways to use concept cartoons
• Providing a stimulus for an
• Introduce a new topic – assess prior
• Challenge a group
• Work with a small group
• Revision
• Homework
Why are concept cartoons so good?
• Visual
• Minimal text – accessible to all.
• Familiar contexts.
• Making scientific argument/dialogue
• Unemotional – ideas are equalised.
• Identify children’s misconceptions.
• Collaborative/enquiry orientated.
Paper back £60 £100 second hand
£150 approx.
CD-ROM and site
Building in assessment for
Concept sentences – use the words,
plus your own to make a sentence.
• Provide pupils with key words or picture
on cards.
They use these with words of their own to
form sentences about a topic/concept.
Minimise nouns (so they have to make
connections and use vocabulary)
Amazon/Millgate House
with CD-ROM for
Try them!
• Concept sentences – start with
simple concepts first so they
understand the process.
• Demonstrate the first one
True or false
• Sit back and listen to what the
children are saying.
• Let them debate and argue (nicely).
• Send one person from each group to
another group and report back.
• Make one child a debate chairman –
discuss answers.
Pupils feelings about science
Pupils like
being active
Pupils want less written
recording in science.
Problems with science
to provide
support for
the least able
or challenge
for the more
investigations are
sometimes over
controlled/ over
What am I
doing in order
to find out?
Science skills goals are
not always clear.
Science Skills:
Sc1 or ‘Working Scientifically’
What are skills learning intentions?
Whatever the children need to do in
order to understand, record or present
science knowledge.
Learning intentions!
• Don’t give it all away!
• Agree skills – how will we do this
• What have we found out at the end!
• Let’s get away from ‘WALT: to
identify magnetic and non-magnetic
Millgate House
What do scientists do?
Types of enquiry…
• Observing over time
• Identifying and classifying
• Pattern seeking
• Research
• Fair testing
• Reporting/presenting
Modelling matters – show what good looks
Using models to check for success
Can I draw a table to record results?
4 -5 reasons why one of these is better than the rest?
Success Criteria for drawing a
(What makes a good table?)
• I used a ruler
• I used title for the table
• I used column headings
• I used scientific language
• I recorded the data correctly
Take a skill intention/
create success criteria
• What are the steps to success?
• What are the features of a really
good one?
• What does it look like when someone
is doing that really well?
Old framework
differentiation in science…
• Begin with a three way split –
LA/A/MA - work with a group.
• Mixed ability – differentiation by
Support and Stretch
Differentiation has changed:
“..the planned and
spontaneous intervention or
withdrawal of a teacher’s
actions throughout the
Challenging Activities to
develop skills.
Activities that make children think
rather than recall. Applying
knowledge/ gaining new…
• Comparing
• Categorising, grouping and
recognising exceptions
• Predicting
• Drop in activities to trigger thinking
Comparing questions:
• Which might be the odd one out ?
frog bird fish
Similar or different
What is similar or
different about a
carnivore and a
Making questions link thinking,
learning and assessment:
• Why is a bear an example of a
• Is it always true that ice melts?
• How do you know for sure that an
animal is a predator/bird/ fish?
• Why might someone think a frog is a
• Why might someone think the moon
is a source of light?
Using scenarios
• What might happen if predators and
were prey swapped?
• What might happen if lots of fats and
sugars were good for you?
• What might happen if wood was
• What might happen if fish and
humans swapped places?
Ways to differentiate
• Different start points/instructions
• Think bombs (drop in questions)
• Added thought experiments
• Self direction/choice
What works
for you –
• Different methods of recording
Recording – plan/record results/
• Is the writing necessary for the
• Is the recording a barrier for some to
the science?
• Are you recording just for evidence of
• Could you use English to expand on
the writing?
Different ways to record
• Drama
• News reports
• Shared group sheets
• Video recording
• Voice recorders
• Drawing/cartoon strips
• Photos of investigations
Science Learning sequence
Pose question(s)- I wonder
Decide on the type of enquiry
Collect evidence/ Interpret results
Draw conclusions/ Use evidence to answer
Report/Present findings
Big Class Science Books
Use these to provide evidence of
learning and teaching rather than
relying on the children doing lots of
written work for evidence.
Use recording when the science calls
for it.
Originally idea from Science Learning Centre
The role of the adult in class
‘I need to help the children get it right so
the lesson is successful.’
‘I need to help the children learn so the
lesson is successful.’
Supporting learning rather than teaching
Making mistakes is at the heart of
science learning
Let them go!
But remember to:
• Find out what they already know and
can do before hand.
• Share and agree clear skills and
knowledge learning goals
• Share and agree success criteria
(what good looks like). Use
• Question, question, question!
Planning points
Planning and reflection time
• Can you make your science more
enquiry based? Start with a problem
and question?
• Can you build in assessment
• Can you plan in support and stretch
• If you’re a science subject leader
make a list of what you need to do!