Subject Lead: Jennifer Spencer


At Le Rondin School, we believe that Science learning is fundamental to exploring, understanding and interacting with the natural and made worlds in which we live.  It offers a wealth of experiences and ideas that encourage children’s natural curiosity and creativity, inspiring awe and wonder.  Science supports the development of technology that leads to new scientific discoveries, shaping how we live safe and healthy lives in our rapidly changing society.  It helps children to find new ways of looking at the world and to engage with changing explanations about how the world works.
Through the teaching of science, children develop knowledge and skills, linking concepts together and applying prior understanding to new learning and situations.  They learn about science as a subject discipline and the importance of scientists on our everyday lives and the world around us.  Children learn to value ideas and to see talking, thinking and imagining as essential elements in developing understanding and new processes.  They tackle problems, forming questions, generating and testing ideas and designs, and deciding how to seek solutions.  They gather and make sense of evidence, test out hypotheses and evaluate processes and outcomes.  They learn the possibilities of science, inspiring them to become the scientists, engineers, designers and innovators of the future and how to be informed citizens responsive to the needs of others and the world in which they live.



The Bailiwick of Guernsey Big Picture Curriculum and Key Entitlements documents provide a structure and skill development for the Science curriculum being taught in Years 1 - 6.  Our science curriculum is developed by amalgamating hiqh quality learning units from the Bailiwick and beyond, including Oak Academy, Chris Quigley’s Curriculum, PLAN Assessment and others.  Units are designed to develop concepts over 2 years with the first year at a basic level and the second year at an advancing and deeper level. The science curriculum includes ‘notable’ scientists.  Learning about these scientists may be in individual standalone lessons or woven in as part of the topic teaching. In addition to the science teaching throughout the year, there is also an annual Science Week which usually coincides with The Great Science Share. Throughout this week classes select a scientist and/or theory to explore in depth and their work is shared with the rest of the school and parents in the form of a Science Fair.


In the Early Years Foundation Stage, Science is taught through specific rich learning tasks and when learning through play, either in continuous provision or in enhanced provision. The children are given a wealth of opportunities to find out about the world around them and to explore the properties of objects, how things work, and cause and effect.  Many of the opportunities the children have to investigate materials or living things are planned as enhancements to the indoor and outdoor learning environments.  These include opportunities for sensory learning experiences - feeling, smelling, tasting, looking at and listening to things.  Science is timetabled to be taught weekly in years 1 - 6.  

Subject Pedagogy

Teaching science can be difficult. Learning science can be difficult. Concepts may be abstract and confusing.  Concepts build upon each other and multiple concepts can be in thought at any one time.  As such, it is important to consider research into specific science learning. Some key cognitive principles taken from the Deans for Impact report (2015):

  • Students learn new ideas by relating them to what they already know
  • have clearly established progression maps for key concepts in science education so that you can sequence the curriculum
  • check prior knowledge and build from there
  • start from the concrete and move to the abstract – analogy models will help
  • Information is withdrawn in a similar way to how it went in
  • teach for meaning – stories and simple contexts can help here
  • ask students to explain how or why something happened
  • Students transfer new information from working memory to long-term memory. Working memory is limited and can be overwhelmed by information that is too challenging
  • don’t challenge too much when first teaching concepts
  • use direct instruction to teach initial ideas
  • make sure practical work is focused on developing key aspects – be mindful of procedural and conceptual demands
  • Learning does not happen in an age-related way – it happens in fits and starts
  • have a clear progression map for how concepts should be learnt – learning requires elaboration
  • don’t avoid teaching concepts because they are ‘biologically inappropriate’ e.g. an eight year old can understand atomic structure if they have the necessary prerequisite knowledge
  • Deliberate practice is essential for learning new knowledge
  • the act of retrieval on regular low-stakes quizzes that are spaced out over time can help students remember
  • alternate what topics you are teaching to help memory
  • Each subject has a set of facts that aid problem solving and free-up working memory
  • Learning requires motivation
  • Feedback is important in acquiring new skills

Teaching science at Le Rondin requires staff to consider the Essential Characteristics of Scientists (Chris Quigley, 2018):

  • The ability to think independently and raise questions about working scientifically and the knowledge and skills that it brings;
  • Confidence and competence in the full range of practical skills, taking the initiative in, for example, planning and carrying out scientific investigations;
  • Excellent scientific knowledge and understanding which is demonstrated in written and verbal explanations, solving challenging problems and reporting scientific findings;
  • High levels of originality, imagination or innovation in the application of skills;
  • The ability to undertake practical work in a variety of contexts including fieldwork;
  • A passion for science and its application in past, present and future technologies. 


The Long Term Plan for science is part of the whole school Le Rondin Curriculum document.

Learning sequences for each unit are written collaboratively by the Key stage Leader and Science Subject Leader as medium term plans (MTPs).  Class teachers adjust these medium term plans to ensure that they meet the needs of their current cohort. 

Teachers either create their own short term planning for their own use or add to the medium term plan documents, adding in the detail that is needed to teach each lesson.  The depth of this will depend on each teacher. 


Science teaching balances teacher presentation, teacher demonstration, guided pupil experiments, and pupils investigating to ensure the best learning possible.  A range of approaches should be evident within each topic area.

Our Science teaching offers opportunities for children to: 

  • develop their natural curiosity; develop respect for living organisms and the physical environment; develop a wide scientific vocabulary;
  • develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of Biology, Chemistry and Physics;
  • develop 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;
  • be equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of Science, today and for the future;
  • develop the essential scientific enquiry skills to deepen their scientific knowledge;
  • use a range of methods to communicate their scientific information and present it in a systematic, scientific manner, including using I.C.T., diagrams, graphs and charts;
  • develop a respect for the materials and equipment they handle with regard to their own, and other people’s safety;
  • develop an enthusiasm and enjoyment of scientific learning and discovery.


As in all subjects, teachers use a range of assessment strategies in their everyday work. These are both formative and summative.  Formative assessment is used as the main tool for assessing the impact of Science as it allows for misconceptions and gaps to be addressed more immediately rather than building on insecure scientific foundations.

Assessment is teacher based and formed using formal strategies (e.g. assessment tasks, quizzes) and informal strategies (e.g. concept maps, verbal/written outcomes, reflection tasks/presentations).  Assessment should focus on the pupil's ability to draw upon their knowledge and to explain what they know, why something is what it is, or why something happens in a certain way.  It is about a pupil’s ability to explain and to apply their knowledge rather than an instant recall of facts. 

Assessment also focuses on the pupil’s ability to think scientifically, to test a hypothesis and to draw conclusions.


Our successful approach to the teaching of science will result in a fun, engaging, high quality science education that provides our pupils with the knowledge and skills for understanding the world.

Our pupils will:

  • Demonstrate a love for Science;
  • Retain and recall knowledge that is pertinent to Science with a real life context;
  • Be able to question ideas and reflect on knowledge;
  • Be able to articulate their understanding of scientific concepts and be able to reason scientifically using rich language linked to science;
  • Demonstrate a high love of mathematical skills through their work, organising, recording and interpreting results;
  • Work collaboratively and practically to investigate and experiment;
  • Achieve age related expectations in Science at the end of their cohort year.