At WGPS we have a purpose-built refurbished laboratory with STEM furniture, science laboratory resources and a learning space that can easily access our beautiful school grounds where real life natural sciences can be observed. Science at West Greenwood is focussed on developing the three interrelated strands of science in an engaging and practical way for students to experience the joy of scientific discovery and nurture their natural curiosity about the world around them. In doing this, they develop critical and creative thinking skills and challenge themselves to identify questions and draw evidence-based conclusions using scientific methods. The wider benefits of this “scientific literacy” are well established, including giving students the capability to investigate the natural world and changes made to it through human activity.
At West Greenwood we focus on developing the Science Understandings strand within the four sub strands across the year, each a focus of the four terms. These include:
- Physical Sciences
- Biological Sciences
- Earth and Space Sciences, and
- Chemical Sciences
The Science Inquiry Strand is developed through posing questions; planning, conducting, and reflecting on investigations; processing, analysing, and interpreting evidence; and communicating findings. At West Greenwood we support the depth of learning developed through students “doing.” At WGPS investigations involve a range of activities, including experimental testing, field work, locating and using information sources, conducting surveys, and using modelling and simulations.
Science as a Human Endeavour, this strand recognises that science as a unique way of knowing and doing, and the role of science in contemporary decision making and problem solving. It also recognises that science advances through the contributions of many different people from different cultures.
Science is taught using the through five E’s pedagogy: Engage, Explore, Explain, Elaborate and Evaluate. This 5E process guides the lesson structure it ensures students are provided with exciting opportunities to develop a deep understanding of the concepts being taught. Explicit teaching of vocabulary supports students’ language and reading development in their classrooms. STEM learning opportunities are planned and experienced, and where appropriate the Engineering process is used to structure these activities.
Digital technologies are embedded within investigations we extensively use creator apps such as Keynote, Popplet, Book Creator and Slow-motion for communicating scientifically. Technology also enables students to record their ideas verbally, use photographs to sequence ideas and video to show cause and effect in science investigations. It is a goal to have, where possible, a paperless environment to support the Sustainability priority.
To bring science to life we also participate in community science events, including:
- Synergy Solar Car Challenge
- Science Week
- Whole school annual incursion