At Mill Ford Science is key to helping pupils explore the world around them. Pupils at Mill Ford have severe learning difficulties and they learn best through practical experience and exploring. Therefore, the key skills of observation, exploration and evaluation are as important to our pupils as knowledge and understanding.
Due to their learning difficulties EYFS/KS1 Science is taught via the early years curriculum and a topic approach is used to engage pupils in the exploration of the world around them. Learning goals in EYFS and KS1 are based on addressing pupils barriers to learning, in order to support them in making academic progress and moving towards a more formal, subject based curriculum in KS2 or 3 if right, relevant and realistic for them.
In KS2 Science is incorporated in our rolling topics. Those working at an informal level are taught via a non-subject specific curriculum that develops the 5 areas of engagement. During topic-based lesson informal learners will focus on developing their exploration, realization, anticipation, persistence and initiation via a sensory-based curriculum.
For semi-formal learners in KS2 English and Maths are taught in a subject specific way but other subjects are taught via topics that have themes within them that enable pupils to develop their early scientific knowledge and skills. Progress for semi-formal learners is based on addressing their barriers to learning, in order to support them in making academic progress and moving towards a more formal, subject based curriculum later in KS2 or 3 if right, relevant and realistic for them.
For formal learners in KS2 Science is also taught via themes within the topic but with a greater focus on subject specific knowledge and acquisition of skills. This approach helps support pupils in making further progress and gaining long term knowledge of basic scientific concepts that enable them to continue to progress onto subject specific learning in KS3.
In KS3 Semi-Formal and Formal learners are taught Science via a subject specific approach using the EQUALS schemes of work. In the autumn term the focus in on chemistry based areas, in spring physics and in summer biology. This approach enables pupils to gain the skills and understanding of the world around them and encourages a love of exploration. For formal learners this gives them the basic knowledge and skills to enable them to move onto using a science lab in KS4.
In KS4 students are taught Science using AQA Unit Award Scheme. Informal learners will work on a sensory based curriculum which will be accredited to AQA unit awards (Pre-Entry Level).
Semi-Formal learners will have separate subject specific timetabled sessions and these will be accredited to AQA Unit Awards.
Formal learners will have subject specific timetabled sessions in a science laboratory and these will be accredited to Entry Level AQA Unit Awards.
Sustainability is taught in KS5, encouraging pupils to consider and implement strategies within their control to increase sustainability within their homes and at school. Pupils who are working at a formal curriculum level also discuss current affairs and discuss relevant scientific related issues.