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EYFS - Understanding the World

The Teaching of Science at St Mary and St Benedict


At St Mary and St Benedict it is our aim that high-quality science education provides the foundations for understanding the world through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics. As Science has changed our lives and is vital to the world’s future prosperity, all pupils should be taught essential aspects of the knowledge, methods, processes and uses of science. Through building up a body of key foundational knowledge and concepts, pupils should be encouraged to recognise the power of rational explanation and develop a sense of excitement and curiosity about natural phenomena and God’s great world. They should be encouraged to understand how science can be used to explain what is occurring, predict how things will behave, and analyse causes.


Through the teaching of science, we encourage our pupils to appreciate the complexity of God’s world and to delve further into the amazing properties within it. Our pupils are inspired by Pope Francis who requests that we become ‘stewards of creation’ and look after our ‘common home’. Our aim is to make children aware that as future scientists they can make a valuable contribution to improve the world we all share. We make children aware that scientific endeavour has been contributed to by persons of all nations, genders and religious beliefs, all for the greater good of the human family.


At St Mary and St Benedict Catholic School pupils learn how to explain the material world through scientific enquiry. Both disciplinary and substantive knowledge are clearly planned so that pupils can see how concepts are connected and make links. Learning is checked through regular 'spot checks' and unit assessments. Progress is reported to parents annually. 


Our curriculum long term plan ensures that all children are taught the relevant programme of study by the end of their relevant key stage. 



Each unit (or sequence) of learning will be supported by:

  • A knowledge organiser which outlines the key knowledge we want children to learn (including vocabulary)
  • A cycle of lessons which build on prior learning and are planned for progression and depth of understanding, and address misconceptions before they become embedded as correct 
  • Low stakes quizzing ('Spot Checks') to support the strengthening of connections and learning being ‘remembered’ as well as freeing up the working memory and reducing cognitive load
  • Key enquiry questions for children to have a good understanding of by the end of the sequence of learning 
  • Enrichment activities including trips and visitors
  • Opportunities to work with learning partners, in small groups and independently 
  • Various ways of recording understanding to cater for all groups of learners. 

National Curriculum, Science Programmes of Study, KS1 and KS2