Scientific understanding is increasingly important in our ever-more complex world. We want children to leave Hanover with an appreciation of the natural world, an understanding of where things come from and the way they work, and a sense of wonder at the possibilities of human invention. We also want them to recognise the importance of taking action to combat the effects of climate change.
The National Curriculum for Science aims to ensure that all pupils:
- develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics
- develop an understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science through different types of science enquiries that help them to answer scientific questions about the world around them
- are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future.
The units of work covered in each Key Stage are:
Key Stage 1 (Year 1 and 2)
- My Body, Everyday Materials, Animals including Humans, Plants, Seasonal Changes
Lower Key Stage 2 (Year 3 and 4)
- Rocks and Soil, Light, Forces and Magnets, Plants
- Sound, Electricity, Living Things and their Habitats, States of Matter, Animals including Humans
Upper Key Stage 2 (Year 5 and 6)
- Electricity, Properties and Changes to Materials, Earth and Space, Forces
- Animals including Humans,Evolution and Inheritance, Light
At Hanover, we teach science as part of our enquiry-led, cross-curricular topics. These are carefully planned to cover all the requirements of the National Curriculum. Topics with science content include:
- How do minibeasts help us? (KS1)
- How do inventions change our lives? (LKS2)
- What and where is planet Earth? (UKS2)
In the summer term, all children will be studying a topic with a broadly environmental theme – for example:
- Why do we need forests? (KS1)
- Where does our rubbish go? (LKS2)
- Why do floods happen? (UKS2)
These topics embed the ‘working scientifically’ requirements so that in addition to the core knowledge and vocabulary, children are developing skills of observation, investigation and fair testing, classification, and data handling.
We regularly invite scientists from universities and research organisations into school to explain what scientists do, their area of expertise, and what their current research is about. In the last year we have had visitors from Oxford University Plant Sciences department to tell us about the impact of plastic pollution on the island of Aldabra, and from City University explained the topic of evolution. We also make visits to museums and galleries to support children’s scientific understanding. Recent visits have included the Science Museum, Natural History Museum, Design Museum, and the Benjamin Franklin’s House Museum.
Science in the Early Years
In the EYFS, we build the curriculum around the children’s interests and experiences. Children in the early years develop their scientific understanding through the Understanding the World strand of the EYFS and the characteristics of effective learning. Within these areas of the curriculum, children learn about scientific principles and methods and discover scientific knowledge for themselves through their own investigations using open-ended resources both inside and in the garden. Children are encouraged to make observations and ask questions. They are given opportunities to test out their ideas and to discover their own explanations. They are taught how to look closely at change, patterns, similarities and differences and how to use resources such as information books to find out more. Children explore different ways of recording their findings such as through drawing, writing, photographs or models.