Science at St Alban's

We follow the National Curriculum to structure our science curriculum, as we know that this means our curriculum is ambitious for all pupils. Here is a link to the national curriculum for science.   
At St Alban’s we teach science discretely.

For science, we have thought carefully about how we sequence learning over time and have broken down learning into small steps or building blocks, starting from when children enter primary school until they leave. At each step, we consider what specific knowledge and understanding we want our pupils to know and remember at each stage of their learning and in each subject. The end of the Foundation Stage, KS1, Lower KS2 and Upper KS2 are key end points for each of these building blocks of our curriculum. We know what we want our pupils to know and remember at each of these end points, focusing on what will be most useful to them, and have sequenced lessons over time to reach those end points.

To support planning, we use Switched on Science Scheme of Work. This scheme provides full coverage of the primary science programmes of study. The scheme of work provides access to all subject knowledge and working scientifically objectives in a range of contexts to support the embedding of these concepts and skills.

At the end of each key stage we expect children in working scientifically to have the substantive knowledge, disciplinary knowledge and vocabulary to…

What do our children think is important about science...

Jasmine, Y6

Jamie, Y6

Monty, Y1

Lily, Y1

Key Features of our Curriculum

Key Scientists 

As part of each unit of science, children are introduced to significant scientists who have contributed and worked in that particular area of science. They learn about the impact these individuals have had on developments in science and that scientific ideas are constantly changing as time passes.


Linked text 

Each year group have allocated text for each discipline. Children’s stories provide a great context for Science. Narratives will link literacy to the science curriculum and Non-fiction text at the year group level will inform of knowledge needed within the area. 


Sticky knowledge

Within each year group there is knowledge identified which is the core knowledge to be taught and that it is intended the children will remember. This includes ‘fun facts’ which will encourage the children to find out more for themselves.

Key Stage Expectations

End of EYFS

All pupils will:

  • begin to question why things happen.
  • Have their own ideas which they begin to explore.
  • Notice similarities and differences.
  • Use their senses and look closely.
  • Use equipment and tools carefully.
  • Create simple representations of people and objects.
  • Talk about things like plants, animals, natural and found objects.
  • begin to use science words.

End of Key Stage 2

Disciplinary Knowledge:

  • Ask different types of questions.
  • Plan different types of scientific enquiries to answer questions.
  • Can set up fair tests when necessary.
  • Decide what observations and measurements to make.
  • Use different scientific equipment to measure with precision. I take repeat readings when appropriate.
  • Decide how to record data and results. I can use scientific diagrams, labels, classification, keys, tables, scatter, bar and line graphs.
  • Report and present findings using speaking and writing including displays and presentations.
  • Use relevant scientific language and illustrations.

Substantive Knowledge:

  • Name, locate and describe the functions of the main parts of the digestive, musculoskeletal, and circulatory systems, and can describe and compare different reproductive processes and lifecycles, in animals.
  • Describe the effects of diet, exercise, drugs and lifestyle on how their bodies function.
  • Name, locate and describe the functions of the main parts of plants, including those involved in reproduction and transporting water and nutrients.
  • Use the observable features of plants, animals and micro-organisms to group, classify and identify them into broad groups, using keys or in other ways.
  • Construct food chains.
  • Explain how environmental changes may have an impact on living things.
  • Use the basic ideas of inheritance, variation and adaptation to describe how living things have changed over time and evolved; and describe how fossils are formed and provide evidence for evolution.
  • Group and identify materials, including rocks, in different ways according to their properties, based on first-hand observation; and justify the use of different everyday materials for different uses, based on their properties.
  • Describe the characteristics of different states of matter and group materials on this basis; and can describe how materials change state at different temperatures, using this to explain everyday phenomena, including the water cycle.
  • Identify, and describe what happens when dissolving occurs in everyday situations; and describe how to separate mixtures and solutions into their components.
  • Can identify, with reasons, whether changes in materials are reversible or not.
  • Use the idea that light from light sources, or reflected light, travels in straight lines and enters our eyes to explain how we see objects, and the formation, shape and size of shadows.
  • Use the idea that sounds are associated with vibrations, and that they require a medium to travel through, to explain how sounds are made and heard.
  • Describe the relationship between the pitch of a sound and the features of its source; and between the volume of a sound, the strength of the vibrations and the distance from its source.
  • Describe the effects of simple forces that involve contact (air and water resistance, friction), and others that act at a distance (magnetic forces, including those between like and unlike magnetic poles; and gravity).
  • Identify simple mechanisms, including levers, gears and pulleys that increase the effect of a force.
  • Use simple apparatus to construct and control a series circuit, and describe how the circuit may be affected when changes are made o it; and use recognised symbols to represent simple series circuit diagrams.
  • Describe the shapes and relative movements of the sun, moon, earth and other planets in the solar system; and explain the apparent movement of the sun across the sky in terms of the earth’s rotation and that this results in day and night.

End of KS1

Disciplinary Knowledge:

  • Ask simple questions.
  • Recognise that questions can be answered in different ways.
  • Perform simple tests.
  • Compare things. I sort and group them.
  • Observe closely.
  • Use simple equipment to make measurements.
  • Gather and record simple data in different ways.
  • Talk about what I have found out.
  • Use simple scientific language.

Substantive Knowledge :

  • Name and locate parts of the human body, including those related to the senses, and describe the importance of exercise, balanced diet and hygiene for humans.
  • describe the basic needs of animals for survival and the main changes as young animals, including humans, grow into adults.
  • describe basic needs of plants for survival and the impact of changing these and the main changes as seeds and bulbs grow into mature plants.
  • identify whether things are alive, dead or have never lived.
  • describe and compare the observable features of animals from a range of groups.
  • group animals according to what they eat, describe how animals get their food from other animals and/or from plants, and use simple food chains to describe these relationships.
  • describe seasonal changes.
  • name different plants and animals and describe how they are suited to different habitats.
  • use their knowledge and understanding of the properties of materials, to distinguish objects from materials, identify and group everyday materials, and compare their suitability for different uses.

Science in action at St Alban's


At St Alban’s we encourage children to take responsibility for the environment.   

All classes embrace a sense of responsibility for the environment and this is led by ‘House Jericho’, who are our Eco Warrior group with responsibility for encouraging others to care for our environment.  Our Eco Warriors help to care for our school environment: they help others to follow our eco-code, monitor our energy use in the school and encourage teachers and children to recycle.

They have introduced new recycling bins into all classrooms and have encouraged children to use them appropriately. Through the work of the Eco Warriors, we are preparing children to be scientists for the future. and giving them the opportunity to develop skills such as confidence, communication and negotiation.

House Jericho’s Achievements

  • Walk to school week.
  • Paper recycling bins in every classroom
  • They deliver regular assemblies on how we can care for the environment- including eco present wrapping.
  • Fund raising for the school garden.
  • After school and lunchtime gardening club.
  • Writing to local business to support our outdoor area.
  • Planting trees in the school grounds.


Outdoor learning and class gardens

At St Alban’s we like to keep our curriculum simple. Our outside area, including our school garden resources our curriculum.

  • Children investigate habitats and plants that they grow in science.
  • We have selected specific foods to grow in our garden that children pick and include in their cooking for design and technology projects.