Stanford Junior and Infant School
Living together - Learning together
Stanford Infant and Junior School understands the need for all pupils to develop their Scientific ability as an essential component of all subjects and as a subject in its own right. A good understanding of scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding helps to support pupils work across the curriculum.
At Stanford Infant and Junior School we believe that a high quality science education provides the foundations for understanding the world through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics. Science has changed our lives and is vital to the world’s future prosperity, and 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. They should be encouraged to understand how science can be used to explain what is occurring, predict how things will behave, and analyse causes.
Science in our school is about developing children’s ideas and ways of working that enable them to make sense of the world in which they live through investigation, as well as using and applying process skills. The staffs at Stanford Infant and Junior School insure that all children are exposed to high quality teaching and learning experiences, which allow children to explore their outdoor environment and locality, thus developing their scientific enquiry and investigative skills. They are immersed in scientific vocabulary, which aids children’s knowledge and understanding not only of the topic they are studying, but of the world around them. We intend to provide all children regardless of ethnic origin, gender, class, aptitude or disability, with a broad and balanced science curriculum.
In ensuring high standards of teaching and learning in science, we implement a curriculum that is progressive throughout the whole school.
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 2014’ and, ‘Understanding of the World’ in the Early Years Foundation Stage. Science teaching at School Stanford Infant and Junior involves adapting and extending the curriculum to match all pupils’ needs. Where possible, Science is linked to class themes. Science is taught as discrete units to ensure coverage. Due to one form year groups in our school, Science units are taught on a year rolling programme. This ensures progression between year groups and guarantees topics are covered. Teachers plan to suit their children’s interests, current events, their own teaching style, the use of any support staff and the resources available.
As part of the planning process teachers need to plan the following:
Science is taught consistently, once a week for up to two hours, but is discretely taught in many different contexts throughout all areas of the curriculum.
At Stanford Infant and Junior School we aspire to promote children’s independence and for all children to take responsibility in their own learning, therefore we have implemented self/teacher assessment sheets, which the children use as a working document to track their achievements and progress throughout a topic.
The impact and measure of this is to ensure children not only acquire the appropriate age related knowledge linked to the science curriculum, but also skills which equip them to progress from their starting points, and within their everyday lives.
All children will have:
A wider variety of skills linked to scientific knowledge and understanding, and scientific enquiry/investigative skills.
A richer vocabulary which will enable to articulate their understanding of taught concepts.
High aspirations, which will see them through to further study, work and a successful adult life
This week's science investigation was to explore refraction.
We made predictions about what we thought would happen to an object/image when seen through a glass of water and discussed how light travels differently in different mediums, e.g. water. We explored how this is due to light waves travelling at different speeds and distorting the portrayal of the object.
We will continue to investigate how light travels and how we see things over our next few lessons.
Wow! What an amazing day!
Willow and Barley classes had a wonderful day at Yorkshire Wildlife Park last week! The day was spent exploring the park, focusing on the animal's habitats and how animals are adapted to their environment, which links to their science topics of 'Rainforests' and 'Evolution and Inheritence'.
Children visited the different animal's enclosures and discussed the types of vegetation, the similarities and differences between males, females and offsprings and how the animals are well suited to their environments.
It was a fantastic day, made even better by the glorious weather.
Keep checking our class blogs for further work related to our trip.
This term Pumpkin Class have been learning all about growth from a baby to an adult. They have explored different kinds of animals as well as humans. To begin Science Week, they investigated the heights of their friends.
C- I predicted that J would be the tallest and M would be the shortest in the whole class.
W- It was fun to use our new height chart and get good at measuring in centimetres.
D- I enjoyed our group's work. We had to find out who was the tallest on our table and who was the shortest and then put everyone's measurements in order. It was a challenge, but we did it!
H- I was surprised at how similar our numbers were.
L- I'm going to keep measuring myself to see if I can grow even taller by the summer.
This week the children have been undertaking tasks linked with growing. This fitted in perfectly with our gardening project in the KS1 playground and our learning about Rocks & Soils. We learnt about how important worms are putting nutrients into the soil and where we would find different types of worms. We then moved some soil into the tyres looking for worms that we could relocate and planted some flowers to make the tyres look pretty. We then went into the nature area to see if we could find worms there. We have put them in a temporary home - our plan is to make a small compost pot so we can observe the worms at work.
Year 4 have enjoyed having some very practical science investigations this week as part of Science Week. This year's theme was 'growth'.
During one investigation we followed a line of enquiry linked to our rainforest topic and work on deforestation. We were introduced to the conservationist Gerald Durrell and looked at his work linked to Madagascar. We then explored the impact of soil erosion on nutrients as part of the impact of deforestation. We set up a comparative investigation to find out what would happen if the soil also had bark or plants growing from it.
Another practical observation we made was linked to whale call and how they appear to be getting lower in frequency. Scientists speculate that this is linked to a growth in numbers and not having to communicate over long distances. We made observations of how a tuning fork's vibration creates ripples within water. This will link to our work in science on 'sound' next term. The tuning fork was such a low frequency that we had to listen very carefully and closely to hear it.
In science we have been learning about how fossils are made when creatures die and they are left underground for millions of years. One of the children brought in a lovely example of an ammonite fossil. We learnt that when they die and are buried underground the body of the ammonite rots away leaving a cast fossil. Sometimes this cast is filled with sediment which turns to rock and makes a mould fossil. We used water to show this process adding water to a cast to make an icy 'fossil' of our own.
We have learnt that rocks have different properties: density; permeability; durability and hardness. We had a carousel of activities for the children to undertake to test their properties.
Density - how quickly does the rock sink? The quicker it sinks the more dense the rock is Permeability - does it let water through? We dropped water onto it to see if it soaked into the rock or stayed on top.
Hardness - Can it be marked with a table knife?
Durability - does it easily wear away?
When we had investigated this we looked at the different rocks and what properties they had. We found out that sedimentary rock is less dense, permeable. less durable and softer whereas igneous and metamorphic rock which had been changed by heat were harder, impermeable, durable & had a greater density. The children found this work really interesting and loved trying different investigations.
Recently, Willow class explored the school grounds in search of invertebrates. After being briefed on how to respectfully handle small creatures, we put on our coats and headed down to the nature area. We used our retrieval skills to remind ourselves how animals can be classified as invertebrates and predicted what we might find. We worked in small groups and used "bug viewers" to explore the invertebrates in greater detail. We found even more than we expected and had a really fun afternoon.
In this lesson we learned that rocks come in 3 types: Igneous; Metamorphic & Sedimentary.
Sedimentary rocks are where rocks are formed by layers/bits of sediment pressed together.
Igneous rocks are formed when rocks are melted in magma or lava and cooled down.
Metamorphic rock is formed when sedimentary rocks or igneous rocks are warmed enough to change but they haven't melted.
To help the children understand this we used Starburst to show these processes. Can you look at the pictures and see which types of rocks we were trying to make?
As part of our learning about animals, reception children are exploring crocodiles. We have learnt how to mix two primary colours to make the green we needed to paint crocodiles. We made a huge crocodile outside with wooden bricks. We also painted, drew and cut out crocodiles for a display. In the story making area we used wild animals to make stories about how a crocodile hunts and kills its prey. Look at the fun we’ve had along the way.
Marigold, Daisy and Cornflower Class: To help with our keeping clean topic, we were lucky enough to have a lovely visit from Mrs Smith's new baby- Cooper! We watched how Cooper enjoys bath time and what Mrs Smith and his Grandma do to keep Cooper clean. This was a great experience to help us with our understanding of the world which features in the EYFS curriculum.
A big thank you to Mrs Smith, Cooper and his Grandma for coming to visit us, and helping us learn!
Today we have looked at reflection and that it involves light bouncing off surfaces. We investigated different materials to find out which are the most reflective. We concluded that materials which are smooth and shiny are the best at reflecting light.
In Science Juniper class investigated the conductivity of different materials. They set up a simple circuit with a battery and bulb, and used different metals to complete the circuit. They observed the brightness of the bulb with each material and measured the light levels.
Today we started our new topic of Light. We looked at different items which produced light, side-tracked slightly as Miss Perrin described why the moon does not produce light but reflects the sun, and thought about what darkness is.
We then played a game where we had to feel things & try to figure out what things are - we realised how much we rely on light and our sight to make sense of our surroundings.
The children have learnt that magnets have a north & a south pole. They were asked to predict whether magnets would attract or repel each others depending on which poles were put together.
They discovered that if the same poles were put together they would repel each other but opposite poles would attract.
The children were introduced to different types of magnets: bar magnets; button magnets; ring magnets; horseshoe magnets & cylindrical magnets. They were asked to make a prediction about which type of magnet would be the strongest then we investigated this by seeing how many paper clips the magnet could hold in a chain. The children found this really tricky but they kept persevering. We found that the size of the magnet does not indicate the strength of the magnet.
First we looked at a magnet and Miss Perrin used iron filings to show its magnetic field. The children found this really fascinating. The children were then asked to predict which materials would be attracted to magnets and which ones wouldn't. They then used magnets to see if their prediction was correct. The children were really surprised to find out that not all metals are attracted to magnets and that some coins are and others are not. The children decided that they must be made from different types of metal.
Juniper Class predicted and then investigated which materials would dissolve in water to make a solution. We predicted which we thought were soluble and which were insoluble. Sugar is soluble whereas cooking oil is insoluble!
Year 4 asked: Can you pour a liquid?
We had lots of great discussion during our investigation into the differences between solid and liquid states of matter. We started by consolidating our learning about how particles behave within solids, liquids and gases.
We then looked at some materials and sorted them into what we thought were solids and liquids.
H: Honey is a thick liquid. We know it is a liquid because it flows together.
L: Honey is a liquid but it has some similar features to a solid.
We tried pouring different materials and noticed that you can pour oats like you would liquid, however we agreed that individual oats are a solid.
H: Oats are solid because you can hold them in your hand.
L: You can pour oats in a group, but they are still a solid
M: When you pour them they bounce and there are gaps between the different oats. This shows they are a solid.
L: When they are poured, they form into a shape or a mound. A liquid would fill the space and lay flat.
The final part of our investigation involved making a mixture using cornflour and water. We found that this reacted differently, depending on whether it was moving or still.
L: When I moved my fingers slowly through it, it reacted like a liquid.
I: When I moved quickly, I could pick it up like a solid. If I kept moving it, it would stay solid. If I relaxed my grip, it would drip like a liquid.
L: If I punch or hit the surface it feels like a solid against my hand.
I: If we apply more force, it reacts like a solid. If we apply less force, it reacts like a liquid.
In Science we were learning about friction. This is a force between two surfaces that are sliding, or trying to slide, across each other. Friction always slows a moving object down. We chose different surfaces to investigate: bubble wrap, thick carpet, thin carpet, the polished hall floor and lino flooring and thought about how we could investigate this and make it a fair test. Which surface do you think would have the most friction and slow the car down? Watch the clips and see if you were right.
Pumpkin Class have been looking closely at froglets this week. We drew the life cycle of the frog and labelled it using our science vocabulary. We can talk about: frog spawn; tadpoles; changes to their bodies; what they eat; how they live firstly in water and then on land (amphibians); their skin and finally how they mate and lay eggs.
We released them into the school pond and will keep going back to watch them grow. Some of us decided to make the life cycle using play doh!
Year 5 have been learning about different forces in science across the year. This week we learned a bit more about the force of friction. We investigated why friction is an important force when it comes to things like brakes on scooters and bikes. In order to investigate friction, we tested how long it took a scooter wheel to slow down, using a variety of different materials. The different materials were our independent variable, which meant that we had to keep all of our other variables the same for each test. It was also a lovely opportunity to get outside in the sun.
On Friday, Pumpkin Class created collages with felt to show our knowledge of parts of a plant. In Science we have learnt about the different parts of a plant and their purpose. We used our art skills of collage to cut felt and create our masterpieces. What do you think?
Our Science topic during Summer 1 is 'Light'.
We have been learning about light sources, how light travels in straight lines and how light travels to enable us to see objects.
We conducted a Scientific Investigation to find out if the distance of the light source from the object affects the shadow size - including a title, prediction (hypothesis), equipment list, method, results chart, conclusion and evaluation.
M - It was really interesting to see the shadow increase, I thought they would just stay the same because the shape we made was the same each time!
F - We know ours was a fair test because we had controlled and independent variables and measured everything really accurately with the ruler.
In Science we worked as teams to act out the life cycle of a flowering part. We tried to include the scientific vocabulary: germination, growing and flowering, pollination, fertilization and seed formation and seed dispersal.
Today Pumpkin Class have been looking at their plants to make scientific observations. Two weeks ago, on our Hook Day, we planted lots of seeds and today, two weeks later, we are looking to see what differences there are.
Wow! In two weeks this is what we noticed:
“I can see a root growing through the bottom of the pot!”
“The seed coat of the sunflower is stuck to a leaf”
“My sunflower has a stem which is tall.”
“The shoot is reaching for the sun and the root is going down.”
Our beans are planted in plastic bags so we can easily see the changes. This is what we observed:
“Some beans have grown more than others.”
“Most have cracked open.”
“One bean is growing smaller roots on the large root!”
We made some great observational drawings too.
Our Hook Day is based on our history topic this term, 'Crime and Punishment'.
We came into school to discover that a crime had been committed - someone had stolen our iPad!
We observed the crime scene, collected evidence, sketched the crimes scene and narrowed down our investigation to four suspects.
From this we then learnt about handwriting analysis, fingerprint lifting, chromatography, classifying fingerprints and discussing alibis and motives!
We had a brilliant day and cannot wait to find out more about how crime and punishments have changed over time.
As a part of Science Week the children had to design their own ‘Robobug’ which could be built to use in space exploration. Today the children were able to finish off their creations and give them some colour. Here is a selection of them. I could just imagine them in space. They look amazing!
In science we are learning about the different types of organisms in this world and how we classify them. Today we looked at different invertebrates, looked at their features and learnt their scientific names. After this we went out onto the field and in the nature area to look for different invertebrates in their natural habitats. We looked at their features and tried to use their scientific names to identify them.
As part of our Science week on ‘Innovating for the Future’, the Year 1 children made water filters to show how dirty water becomes clean. They discussed how some people are not as lucky as us and don’t have clean water. When they were doing their investigation, they were surprised to see how the very dirty water came out so clean!
This activity encouraged the Y1 children to be creative and to think of innovative designs for building crunchy architecture with biscuits and edible chocolate cement!
O- It was fun making the buildings.
C- I enjoyed making a tower.
L- Putting all the chocolate on was very sticky.
E- You had to think of the shapes of the biscuits and how they could fit together.
H- I had to put my biscuits together carefully, so they didn’t fall down.
E- It was fun to be able to eat our Science activity today!
Today we got creative and thought about innovative designs to build some crunchy architecture with biscuits and edible melted chocolate cement! There were lots of problems solving and investigating the best ways to create structures that could stand up. We then enjoyed eating our structures and welcoming everyone back.
J.Ch. - It was tricky making the roof, it kept falling down."
J.M - "Spreading the chocolate cement it was nice and runny."
A.T - "The chocolate cement was sticky."
E.G - "Putting the biscuits together with the chocolate cement was fun."
We played Jenga to learn about herd immunity.
On our tower of Jenga each block represented a group of people.
We put stickers on 10 blocks. The stickers represented groups of people that have been vaccinated.
Unmarked blocks were removed as they were infected with the virus. After a while the blocks collapsed.
Next we put stickers on 20 blocks. Unmarked blocks were again removed. This time the tower stayed up. This is because more people in the community are protected by the vaccine.
This is called Herd immunity.
We investigated different types of plastics by testing some for their properties. We learnt about the problems with single use plastics and ways these can be reused.
Insects have evolved to help them survive in many different habitats and have been the inspiration for many robots for rescue missions and space exploration. The recent exploration of Mars and the robots used have been in the news recently and were the inspiration for this activity. The children were given the task to design their own robo-bug which could be used for exploration, search & rescue & construction using different parts of different insects. After they designed them the children made a prototype out of salt dough. They had lots of fun making them.
In British Science week the theme is ‘INNOVATING THE FUTURE’.
This activity is based on the principle of Herd immunity. The children were asked to build their Jenga tower to represent a community. They then placed 10 stickers to show people who have been inoculated. They were then able to ‘infect’ the other blocks by removing them. The community fell apart very quickly. They then repeated this with 20 stickers and then 30 stickers. The more stickers there were the stronger the community was as it was difficult to spread the infection.
In real terms inoculations make it more difficult to spread disease and protects those who cannot have inoculations themselves due to medical conditions. The world has faced a battle against COVID and the development of inoculations in a relatively short time shows how important scientists are constantly innovating and working to find cures for many diseases.
In Year 6, our Science Week project was inspired by the Perseverance rover landing on Mars!
We found out all about why we are exploring Mars, how we are doing it and discussed all of the components that are needed for a successful space rover mission.
For more information, please visit mars.nasa.gov/mars2020/
Firstly, we created a design brief, then built prototypes out of cardboard - this was much trickier than it looks!
Next, we are going to be creating our Mars rovers with wood, cardboard and an electrical circuit - we can't wait to show you the finished product!
We have been learning about how sound travels through vibrations. In this lessons we wanted to know how we can reduce sound by soundproofing it with different materials. We played a track on a loop so the song was consistent. Then we wrapped the tech playing the music with different materials such as tin foil, newspaper, thick fabric and sponge.
We found out that it was very difficult to judge which material was the best. Sometimes we learn more by things not working well and we used our problem solving skills to think why the investigation was not accurate and how it could be improved next time. We researched further and found that items with air in them, such as bubble wrap or sponge are the best materials to use as the air particles are further apart to pass on the vibrations.
It was nice to see some of the children at home joining in too.
In science we have looked at how sound gets quieter the further we move from it. First Miss Perrin set off a timer and each time we moved further away from the sound if got quieter and quieter. We then tried making string telephones. The children were amazed at how loud their voices were through a paper cup and a piece of string. It was lovely to see that others at home have been having fun trying this too.