Planning for Science

Hi everyone,

As you know I work with Science Foundation Ireland delivering workshops to schools for an inquiry based approach to teaching Science. Aistear is the ideal opportunity to allow the children to develop their own investigations through play. Activities such as investigating ramps could be explored in the construction area during the mechanic topic.

I have always enjoyed teaching Science and even when the classroom is chaotic and busy, I know my class are engaged and working together for Science. I have used the Primary Science lessons since I started teaching, I attended inservice on Primary Science Awards in the very early days of the programme and since then I have worked with my colleagues and we have 13 awards in the school to date. We are delighted with achieving all our awards, but they do not require extra work as the majority of the activities you would cover in the classroom and have become part of the classroom practice and planning now.

When planning for Science I use a variety of supports such as Primary Science Website, videos from YouTube and BBC Bitesize Clips. I feel it is important to plan a variety of activities for discrete lessons in Science that will link with your overall Aistear topic. The Aistear time will allow the children to engage in the play based learning and discrete lessons can have a focus on vocabulary and investigations on the topic.

In Senior classes I have always tried to link my Science in an overall themed approach in SESE. Topics such as the Famine will allow you to discover plants and making a potato maze in Science, while also learning about the Great Famine in History and Famine across the world in Geography.

The children will also develop their own ideas for investigations through the inquiry based approach. Another topic I enjoyed working through with my class was Earthquakes. The children learned about Earthquakes in Geography,  made a timeline for some of the biggest earthquakes recorded in History. And one of my favourite Science investigations was building towers to withstand earthquakes. The children planned their model and then created it with a mixture of materials such as pasta, marshmallows, skewers, blu tack. We then tested the structures on a bed of jelly to see which tower would withstand the earthquakes. It was a great series of lessons which encouraged the children to reflect on their work, what went wrong and what they needed to change. This was often hard for them as it is a step in experiments that is often overlooked. This project took over 4 weeks to complete in full. But the class loved it.

I have been reviewing all my long term schemes and have been updating them. I have updated my Long Term Infants Science Plan and my Science Plan for 5th & 6th with links to videos and activities. They are all now discounted on my Mash.ie store. If you bought them previously then you can download the updated version.

If you have any questions please send me a DM.

Aistear Muinteoir.

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