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St Joseph's Catholic Primary School

With God in Our Hearts We Love and Learn.

St Joseph's Catholic Primary School


A St Joseph’s learner will enjoy exploring, questioning and gaining a greater understanding of the world around them. They will plan scientific experiments, make predictions and answer their own questions about how and why things work. Children will have an appreciation of the world that God created for them and the impact that they can have upon it.


In EYFS, learning introduces children to some of the skills and concepts that they will build upon in Science through their school journey.

Reception Development Matters 2020 Statements

The development of children’s spoken language underpins all seven areas of learning and development. Children’s back-and-forth interactions from an early age form the foundations for language and cognitive development. The number and quality of the conversations they have with adults and peers throughout the day in a language[1]rich environment is crucial. By commenting on what children are interested in or doing, and echoing back what they say with new vocabulary added, practitioners will build children’s language effectively. Reading frequently to children, and engaging them actively in stories, non-fiction, rhymes and poems, and then providing them with extensive opportunities to use and embed new words in a range of contexts, will give children the opportunity to thrive. Through conversation, storytelling and role play, where children share their ideas with support and modelling from their teacher, and sensitive questioning that invites them to elaborate, children become comfortable using a rich range of vocabulary and language structures.

  • Ask questions to find out more and to check they understand what has been said to them.
  • Use talk to help work out problems and organise thinking and activities, and to explain how things work and why they might happen.
  • Listen to and talk about selected non-fiction to develop a deep familiarity with new knowledge and vocabulary.
  • Explanations for why things might happen, making use of recently introduced vocabulary from stories, non-fiction, rhymes and poems when appropriate.


Early Learning Goals

Understanding the world involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community. The frequency and range of children’s personal experiences increases their knowledge and sense of the world around them – from visiting parks, libraries and museums to meeting important members of society, such as police officers, nurses and firefighters. In addition, listening to a broad selection of stories, non-fiction, rhymes and poems will foster their understanding of our culturally, socially, technologically and ecologically diverse world. As well as building important knowledge, this extends their familiarity with words that support understanding across domains. Enriching and widening children’s vocabulary will support later reading comprehension.

  • Explore the natural world around them, making observations and drawing pictures of animals and plants.
  • Know some similarities and differences between the natural world around them and contrasting environments, drawing on their experiences and what has been read in class.
  • Understand some important processes and changes in the natural world around them, including the seasons and changing states of matter. 

In our Nursery and Reception classes, children will have opportunities to explore and investigate their natural world. Children regularly explore our forest area which sparks conversation about animals, habitats, growth and seasonal changes. We ask children developmentally appropriate questions about our world. An example of how progression may look could be..

“What is the weather like today?”

“Why is their frost on the grass?”

“What is this? (ice) “How did this happen?” “What could we do to melt the ice?”

We encourage children to make predictions based on their knowledge and test their ideas. If a child has a question about our world we will explore this and relate practical examples and investigations where possible.

We love supporting curious minds! We love encouraging children to ask questions and investigating! 

KS1 and KS2

The content of science teaching and learning is set out in the 2014 National Curriculum for primary schools in England. Within this, certain topics and areas are repeated across year groups, meaning that children may revisit a particular topic in each year of primary school but with increasing difficulty and with a different focus each time.

Programme of Study

Below is our school's Science Progression Map which outlines the Programme of Study. This shows the scientific language, skills and knowledge that each year group covers from Y1-Y6.

How Science is taught in our school

  • Our school's science programme of study follows the National Curriculum and is supported by the following resources: Plymouth Science, Purple Mash, Century Tech and Twinkl. We do not follow a single, published scheme of work but make best use of challenging and appropriate resources to help embed working scientifically skills and scientific enquiry. Teachers use progression maps to support their planning but will, of course, develop their own medium-term plans to support the different needs and requirements of their own class.
  • Science is taught as a stand alone subject, but teachers do make cross curricular links to other learning, that takes place in school, where appropriate. Science teaching focuses on developing both substantive and disciplinary knowledge.
  • Years 1 – 6 have an allocation of 2 hours per week for Science.
  • Our curriculum is distinctive in that it has been developed to meet the needs of our children. We aim to provide a well balanced curriculum that offers lots of practical opportunities to learn, trips, visitors and additional learning resources such as Plymouth science and Purple Mash. We value the importance of including children in the delivery process of lessons, giving them opportunities to recall previous learning and make links to what they already know.
  • We assess using TAPS alongside teacher judgments to provide valid assessments of children's progress each unit. Over time, the full range of children’s science enquiry skills and understanding of science can be considered in depth. We use these assessments two thirds of the way through a unit - far enough that the children have had the opportunity to develop their understanding and skills, but allowing sufficient time to act on the assessment information.

Progression Maps

Our progression maps are organised into units in order to show clear progression between year groups. In Science, children will repeat units throughout their time in school, with increasing difficulty and a different focus each time. Our progression maps show that development of substantial knowledge clearly, whilst also demonstrating how disciplinary knowledge develops through each year group. 

Science Policy

 Science Policy.docDownload
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Long term plan 

Purple Mash

We use Purple Mash to support learning across the Science curriculum. Children use their Purple Mash accounts for a range of activities, for example: fact files, non-chronological reports, mind maps, leaflets, posters, recounts and to complete quizzes to test their knowledge.

Support in Science

All children have the opportunity to join in Science lessons weekly, however we know that some children may need more support in this lesson than others. To help children who may need more support or who are on the SEN register we may:

  • give adult support during Science lessons
  • offer modified resources or books
  • give visual prompts

This support will be given during the lesson so that children do not miss out on their curriculum.

Take a look at what we have been learning...