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Harbour Primary


Our Vision and Intent for Science

At Harbour Primary and Nursery School, we believe that science stimulates and excites pupils' curiosity about natural phenomena and events in the world around them.  It also satisfies their curiosity with knowledge.  This body of knowledge will be built up through the experimental testing of ideas including the study of existing evidence. Scientific method is about developing and evaluating explanations through experimental evidence and modelling. Through Science, pupils understand how major scientific ideas contribute toward technological change – impacting on industry, medicine, business and improving quality of life. They learn to question and discuss science-based issues that may affect their own lives, the directions of society and the future of the world. Through our teaching of science, it will also promote collaborative activity where ideas and suggestions are shared and investigated together. 

Our aims:

  • Preparing our children for life in an increasingly scientific and technological world.
  • Fostering concern about, and active care for, our environment.
  • Helping our children acquire a growing understanding of scientific ideas.
  • Enable pupils to question, hypothesize, test and discover for themselves about our world. 
  • Developing the skills of investigation - including observing, measuring, predicting, hypothesising, experimenting, communicating, interpreting, explaining and evaluating.
  • Developing the use of scientific language, recording and techniques.
  • Developing the use of ICT in investigating and recording.
  • Enabling our children to become effective communicators of scientific ideas, facts and data. 

 We seek to ensure that our children:

  • 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
  • Are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future

The School Implementation of Science

Planning for science is a process in which all teachers are involved to ensure that the school gives full coverage of the National Curriculum programmes of study for science and ‘Understanding of the World’ in the Early Years Foundation Stage.  Science teaching in the school is about excellence and enjoyment and where possible is cross-curricular. We currently use the Pearsons “Science Bug” programme of study to ensure that the objectives outlined by the National Curriculum are divided and allocated to Year groups, with specific content to cover.  The school ensures that a broad and balanced science curriculum is followed in which enquiry is at the heart of our children’s scientific learning.

Science in Nursery and EYFS 

Play underpins the delivery of all the learning in Nursery and EYFS. Within a secure and challenging environment with effective support, children can explore, develop and experiment as they play to help them make sense of the world.  The EYFS strand ‘Understanding the World’ leads directly to scientific elements of the curriculum and leads to more formalised Science learning in KS1 and then KS2.

Key Stage One 

During Key Stage one, pupils observe, explore and ask questions about living things, materials and the world around them. They begin to work together to collect evidence to help them answer questions, find patterns, classify and group objects, research using a variety of sources, observe changes in their environment over time and carry out fair testing.  Pupils use reference materials to find out more about scientific ideas. They share their ideas and communicate them using scientific language, drawings, charts and tables. Science lessons in Key Stage one are either taught discretely or where possible connected to other curriculum areas. Pupils often use their outdoor areas and garden in their science learning. As Science is a core subject, in KS1 and Foundation stage teachers teach science for a minimum of one hour each week.

Key Stage Two 

Children are encouraged to extend the scientific questions that they ask and answer about the world around them. Pupils carry out a range of scientific enquiries including: observations over time, pattern seeking, classifying, grouping and researching using other sources (including computing resources). Children in Key Stage Two learn to plan science investigations by only changing one variable to make it a fair test. They extend their scientific learning using the outdoor areas. Pupils share their ideas and communicate them using scientific language specific to the topic, diagrams, charts, tables and computerised graphing. Pupils often use their outdoor areas and garden in their science learning.

Cross-curricular Science Opportunities 

Teachers will seek to take advantage of opportunities to make cross-curricular links. They will plan for pupils to practise and apply the skills, knowledge and understanding acquired through science lessons to other areas of the curriculum: 

Sharing strong links with mathematics – taking measurements (length, time, mass, etc), data handling and presenting data in tables and through the use of graphs and pie charts. 

ICT. We recognise the important role computing skills have to play in the development of scientific skills. We also recognise the importance of being computer literate. Computing skills are used to enhance teaching and learning of science and to give all children the opportunity to use computing to research, collect, analyse and present scientific findings. This includes the use of data loggers and microscopes.

Geography shares a ‘natural’ link with science and pupils should have every possible opportunity to explore the science present in and around their school environment. 

To bring in History, children should have the opportunity to research and learn about famous scientists from history and how their achievements have changed or impacted upon our lives – this is particularly relevant in our Quests that have a Science focus. 


We use assessment to inform and develop our teaching.

Topics begin with an assessment of what children already know using activities such as: asking a big question, concept cartoon, grouping or classifying a set of objects/cards, a KWL (what I wonder, what I know, what I learnt), true or false statements, mind maps/word webs etc. which are evidenced in planning or books.

We assess for learning (AfL) throughout the topic. Activities during, and at the end of, each topic record achievement and celebrate success. Types of activities can include reasoning question stems or revisiting pre topic activities:

  • Which one is the odd one out?
  • Always, sometimes, never 
  • True or False – why?
  • Give another, another and another. (Different examples)
  • Convince me
  • Would you rather?
  • What’s the same? What’s different?
  • What is the question if ……………. is the answer.
  • What do you notice?

At the end of each unit, teachers assess each pupil’s progress based on observations, questioning and science work, which will be recorded in Curriculum books; evidence will also be photographic or written on post-its and evident on classroom displays or in floor books.

We have a tracking system to follow children’s progress linked to the Pearsons “Science Bug” online platform. The school science coordinator monitors progress through the school by sampling children’s work at regular intervals. Children who are not succeeding, or children who demonstrate high ability in science, are identified and supported.

The Y2 & Y6 staff assess children’s attainment and progress at the end of each key stage. This is based on assessment records and work samples from across the key stage and is supported by the science coordinator and previous class teachers if needed.

Our Science intent:

The intent is to provide a high-quality science education that enables children to recognise the importance of science in everyday life and in their local context.

The Harbour science curriculum will ensure that children are enquiry-based learners, where they use recall and review to establish what they already know, and use this knowledge as the basis for further investigation.

The curriculum fosters a healthy curiosity in children about our universe and promotes respect for the living and non-living around them. They will work scientifically to develop their conceptual understanding and scientific knowledge and skills.

The science curriculum is carefully planned and sequenced through the use of a published scheme which is reviewed regularly and is responsive to pupils needs and gaps in learning.  

Science Implementation

Children will be encouraged to ask questions

Our science curriculum offers a broad range of experiences designed to provide pupils with a progression of scientific understanding, skills and knowledge. Children learn through practical activities which develop their investigative skills and are given opportunities to find out about different scientific professions and famous scientists. Through science we raise aspirations and encourage new ambitions.

Understanding of key ideas in science is built on across the key stages and a progression of skills allows pupils to move from early observations and exploration, to considered questioning and drawing out of ideas.

Years 1 to 6 follow Pearsons Science Bug unit planning. Each lesson has clearly identified objectives for ‘working scientifically’ and ‘subject knowledge’. In the Foundation stage setting, Children will develop their knowledge and understanding of the world through child initiated and adult led activities set up in the free flow environment.





science progression document.pdf