National Curriculum


During years 5 and 6, pupils should be taught to use the following practical scientific
methods, processes and skills through the teaching of the programme of study content.
National Curriculum of England Hands-On Education Activity
Sc6/1 Working Scientifically
    Sc6/1.1 planning different types of scientific enquiries to answer questions, including recognising and controlling variables where necessary
      Sc6/1.2 taking measurements, using a range of scientific equipment, with increasing accuracy and precision
        Sc6/1.3 recording data and results of increasing complexity using scientific diagrams and labels, classification keys, tables, and bar and line graphs
          Sc6/1.4 using test results to make predictions to set up further comparative and fair tests
            Sc6/1.5 using simple models to describe scientific ideas
              Sc6/1.6 reporting and presenting findings from enquiries, including conclusions, causal relationships and explanations of results, in oral and written forms such as displays and other presentations
                Sc6/1.7 identifying scientific evidence that has been used to support or refute ideas or arguments
                  Sc6/2.1 Living Things and their habitats
                    Sc6/2.1a describe how living things are classified into broad groups according to common observable characteristics and based on similarities and differences, including micro-organisms, plants and animals
                      Sc6/2.1b give reasons for classifying plants and animals based on specific characteristics
                        Sc6/2.2 Animals including humans
                          Sc6/2.2a identify and name the main parts of the human circulatory system, and describe the functions of the heart, blood vessels and blood
                            Sc6/2.2b recognise the impact of diet, exercise, drugs and lifestyle on the way their bodies function
                              Sc6/2.2c describe the ways in which nutrients and water are transported within animals, including humans
                                Sc6/2.3 Evolution
                                  Sc6/2.3a recognise that living things have changed over time and that fossils provide information about living things that inhabited the Earth millions of years ago
                                    Sc6/3.2b recognise that living things produce offspring of the same kind, but normally offspring vary and are not identical to their parents
                                      Sc6/2.3c identify how animals and plants are adapted to suit their environment in different ways and that adaptation may lead to evolution
                                        Sc6/4.1 Light
                                          Sc6/4.1a recognise that light appears to travel in straight lines
                                            Sc6/4.1b use the idea that light travels in straight lines to explain that objects are seen because they give out or reflect light into the eye
                                              Sc6/4.1c explain that we see things because light travels from light sources to our eyes or from light sources to objects and then to our eyes
                                                Sc6/4.1d use the idea that light travels in straight lines to explain why shadows have the same shape as the objects that cast them
                                                  Sc6/4.2 Electricity
                                                    Sc6/4.2a associate the brightness of a lamp or the volume of a buzzer with the number and voltage of cells used in the circuit
                                                      Sc6/4.2b compare and give reasons for variations in how components function, including the brightness of bulbs, the loudness of buzzers and the on/off position of switches
                                                        Sc6/4.2c use recognised symbols when representing a simple circuit in a diagram.

                                                          Which topics are included in the national science curriculum for children in year 6?

                                                          The national science curriculum for Year 6 students is diverse and comprehensive, covering a variety of essential topics. These include:

                                                          • Living Things and Their Habitats: Students explore the classification of living things into broad groups and delve into various habitats and the organisms that reside within them.
                                                          • Animals, Including Humans: This topic focuses on human biology, specifically the main components of the circulatory system, and also covers general animal physiology.
                                                          • Evolution and Inheritance: Young learners study how species have changed over time, with particular emphasis on the evidence provided by fossils.
                                                          • Light: Children learn about the fundamentals of light, including its sources, properties, and behaviors.
                                                          • Electricity: The curriculum introduces the basics of electrical circuits, helping students understand different components and their functions.

                                                          Across these topics, students engage in practical experiments and theoretical learning to gain a holistic understanding of the subject matter. This foundation prepares them for more advanced studies in their ensuing educational journey.

                                                          Key Learning Objectives for Year 6 Science: Animals, Including Humans

                                                          The Year 6 science curriculum focuses extensively on critical functional aspects of biology that help pupils understand both human and animal anatomy and physiology. Here's a deeper look into the concepts emphasized:

                                                          1. Human Circulatory System: Students will delve into identifying the main parts of this system and will learn about the vital roles played by the heart, blood vessels, and blood. They will explore how these components work together to sustain life.
                                                          2. Effects of Lifestyle Choices: The curriculum covers the important ways in which a person's lifestyle choices, such as diet and exercise, as well as external factors like drugs, affect bodily functions. This section is designed to foster an awareness of healthy living.
                                                          3. Transportation of Nutrients: Learners will study the mechanisms through which nutrients and water are transported across different species, including humans. This promotes an understanding of biological processes that are fundamental to all animals.

                                                          These content areas equip students with a well-rounded understanding of important biological principles and how they apply to daily life and the natural world.

                                                          Understanding Evolution and Inheritance in Year 6 Science

                                                          In the Year 6 science curriculum, students delve deeper into the concepts of evolution and inheritance, building on their previous knowledge from studying fossils in their lessons on Rocks. The curriculum is designed to cover several key learning objectives:

                                                          1. Historical Changes: Students explore how species have transformed over time. They learn that the Earth was once home to living organisms that are very different from those found today.
                                                          2. The Role of Fossils: Fossils are introduced as crucial evidence providing insights into organisms that inhabited the Earth millions of years ago. Through fossils, students understand the historical lineage of living things and their environments.
                                                          3. Reproduction and Variation: Children discover that while offspring are generally of the same kind as their parents, variations do occur. This concept is essential for understanding genetic diversity.
                                                          4. Adaptation and Survival: The curriculum covers how plants and animals adapt to their surroundings. Students study various adaptations and how they help organisms survive and thrive, which can eventually lead to evolution.

                                                          Through these modules, students gain a comprehensive understanding of how living things adapt, evolve, and pass on traits through generations, emphasizing the dynamic nature of life on Earth.

                                                          Developing Understanding of Light in Year 6 Science

                                                          In the sixth year of school, children delve deeper into the concepts of light through engaging and insightful lessons. The curriculum is designed to enhance their foundational knowledge and teaches them about the behavior of light, encompassing sources of light, reflections, and shadows. Here’s how their understanding is evolved:

                                                          • Understanding Light Travel: Students learn the fundamental concept that light travels in straight lines. This principle helps to explain various natural phenomena and sets the stage for more complex optics studies.
                                                          • Exploring Vision and Perception: Children explore how we see objects. They understand that objects are visible either because they emit light or because they reflect light into our eyes. This concept is crucial for them to grasp how human vision works in conjunction with light.
                                                          • Shadows and Shapes: Using the straight-line travel of light, educators teach students why shadows maintain the same shape as the objects casting them. This part of the lesson plan helps students relate light's behavior to observable everyday experiences.

                                                          Through these structured lessons, year 6 students not only learn about light theoretically but also apply their knowledge to understand and interpret the phenomena around them. This comprehensive approach ensures a solid understanding of the fundamental properties of light and lays a strong foundation for future scientific learning.

                                                          What additional objectives about electricity are introduced to children in year 6 science based on their previous learning in year 4?

                                                          In year 6, building on the foundations laid in year 4, the national curriculum introduces advanced objectives for children studying electricity. Students are expected to delve deeper into the functionality and characteristics of electrical circuits, specifically focusing on three key areas:

                                                          1. Understanding Circuit Components: Students will learn to correlate the brightness of a lamp or the loudness of a buzzer with the number of cells and the voltage in a circuit. This teaches them how variations in electrical input can affect an output.
                                                          2. Analysing Variations in Circuit Components: Children will compare different components like bulbs and buzzers. They'll explore reasons behind variations in performance, such as why some bulbs are brighter and some buzzers are louder, considering factors like the switch positions.
                                                          3. Circuit Representation: Another significant area of growth is in their ability to use standard symbols to represent a circuit in a schematic diagram. This objective focuses on translating a practical circuit into a universally understood diagrammatic format.

                                                          These objectives aim to deepen students' understanding of electrical principles and prepare them for more complex concepts in future studies.

                                                          How is the science curriculum implemented to ensure all pupils can access and develop necessary skills?

                                                          Our Science curriculum is designed to ensure that all pupils can access and develop necessary skills through a hands-on approach to learning. During years 5 and 6, pupils are taught to use practical scientific methods, processes, and skills as outlined in the National Curriculum of England. This includes planning various scientific enquiries to answer questions, mastering the recognition and control of variables, and taking measurements with increasing accuracy and precision using a range of scientific equipment. Additionally, students learn to record data and results using scientific diagrams, labels, classification keys, tables, and graphs. They utilize test results to make predictions and set up further comparative tests, and they are encouraged to report and present their findings in both oral and written forms, such as displays and presentations. Through these activities, pupils can identify scientific evidence to support or refute ideas or arguments, fostering a deeper understanding of scientific concepts and promoting critical thinking skills. This approach helps to ensure that all pupils have the opportunity to develop the necessary skills in science education.

                                                          What is the impact and measure of the science curriculum on children's learning and development?

                                                          The impact and measure of the science curriculum on children's learning and development are evident in their acquisition of age-appropriate knowledge, skills, and understanding. The curriculum aims not only to equip children with essential scientific concepts but also to provide them with the necessary skills to progress from their individual starting points and apply their learning in everyday life. Ultimately, the goal is for children to leave the educational program with a deep understanding, stored in their long-term memory, and valuable skills that will continue to benefit them in their future studies and professional endeavours.

                                                          What key assessment criteria are provided for each year group in science?

                                                          Key assessment criteria are outlined for each year group in science. The criteria are provided for Year 6, Year 5, Year 4, Year 3, Year 2, and Year 1. These criteria outline the expected standards for science learning at each respective year level. Each set of criteria is documented in a PDF format for easy reference and understanding, with the aim of guiding educators, students, and parents on the expected outcomes and skills in science for each year group. This comprehensive approach ensures clarity and transparency in assessing the progress and development of students in science throughout their primary school years.

                                                          What is the science curriculum vision and intent at Hands-On Education?

                                                          The science curriculum vision and intent at Hands-On Education is centered around providing all students with a high-quality education in science. The site aims to cultivate students' scientific abilities across all subjects, emphasizing the importance of scientific knowledge and understanding in supporting their overall academic development.

                                                          Furthermore, Hands-On Education is dedicated to offering an inclusive science curriculum that enables students to confidently explore and comprehend the world around them. By providing engaging and hands-on experiences, the school seeks to spark curiosity, encourage questioning, and foster a love for scientific inquiry. Through these experiences, students are expected to develop a deeper understanding of the world they live in and acquire essential skills that will prepare them for the demands of a dynamic and ever-changing society.

                                                          How can parents and students access science learning resources at Hands-On Education?

                                                          Parents and students Hands-On Education can easily access science learning resources by visiting the website. Once on the site, they should look for the section dedicated to learning resources, where they will find two separate categories for Science resources: one for Key Stage 1 (KS1) and another for Key Stage 2 (KS2). By simply clicking on the respective link, parents and students can access all the relevant science learning materials they need to support their learning.

                                                          Discover Hands-On Education