At Bevington, we have a unique approach to Science, teaching it through our specially designed STEM Curriculum. We view the STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) as crucial to a rounded school experience. Our broad and challenging curriculum gives pupils a full opportunity to develop their own understanding of the world in which they live. Our pupils engage in practical, academic and rigourous science learning, and we teach investigative skills from a young age to enable them to take ownership over their learning. We recognise the imbalance that STEM careers have in the workplace, and we are fully committed to giving our pupils the option to pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths from an early age.
We are lucky to have a specialist Practical and Digital Lab at Bevington. These facilities have been made to ensure that pupils learn about STEM in the most meaningful way possible. Every lesson that we teach involves a practical element, which we believe allows children to engage in more meaningful tasks that have a long-lasting impact on their learning and scientific development.
Investigations are used to help children further their understanding of basic concepts, by applying them in new contexts. Children at Bevington learn how to form their own predictions – relating them back to their prior knowledge of the world around them, set-up and carry out their own experiments, measure and record their own results and consider the variables that they need to think about in order to ensure that their data is valid. All of our investigations also make use of secondary evidence, which helps to increase children’s interest and make the activity more meaningful.
The completion of a full investigation begins in Year 1 and they are completed on a termly basis until the end of Year 6. The following are some of the types of questions that children will work on answering through investigations:
- What material is best to build a house?
- Which type of condition is most suitable for a morio worm to live in?
- What are the best conditions for plants to grow in?
- How does the length of the wire affect the brightness of a bulb?
- What state of matter is the most effective for sound to pass through?
Please find the progression map for STEM at Bevington below. This map details the skills and knowledge pupils are taught in each year through the school.
We have specialist rooms dedicated to the teaching of STEM: a practical lab for experiments and other practical work, and a digital lab for computing, coding and programming. As a school, Bevington possesses an incredibly well-stocked selection of resources that cover each area of the curriculum. These resources are used by children within their learning, and they improve their own working scientifically skills through deciding for themselves which piece of equipment would be most effective to use. Examples of science resources that we use to enhance learning across the school include: motorized solar systems, rain and wind gauges, glass thermometers and working microscopes.
We also have two learning gardens on either side of the building. Our science garden on the Key Stage One playground features over 100 varieties of plant, a pond and a large glasshouse which we use for group work. We have also have a bee garden which is equipped with a hive and a colony of bees. We have a set of bee suits to allow the children to explore the hive and learn about the unique ecosystem it contains.
A Lead School for STEM
We are dedicated to developing good practicing in STEM teaching and learning locally, and we are currently in the process of building a specialist standalone facility dedicated to this. Our new building will house a new Science Lab and training room, which will be used to support teaching and learning within the school, and provide training and support for teachers and schools locally.
We have an established partnership with the Ogden Trust, which is a charitable organisation that helps to support the teaching and learning of Physics in primary schools across London. As the lead school in the partnership, we continue to look for other schools who would like to work together to provide high-quality CPD for staff, exceptional resources for pupils, and networking opportunities for all.
Recently, we have been very fortunate to build links with several well-established educational centres within our community. We have links with Westminster Academy, meaning pupils are regularly given the opportunity to experience what science is like at a secondary school level in specialist laboratories. We have also used our connections with Imperial College London to support learning across the school. We continue to look for partners who would like to work with Bevington to extend experiences for our pupils.