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2106 Science - 28 June 2021

28 June 2021


Curriculum Report – Science

What is happening now?

This year, each term is to be guided by an overarching umbrella topic to be decided as children's interests emerge. See below.

  1. Term 1: Who are we? Ko wai matou?

  2. Term 2: How do we provide for others?

  3. Term 3: Who is looking after me?

  4. Term 4: How do we work together?

The reason for this was to align with Kaikohe East School graduate profile philosophies, allow for curriculum coverage and to ensure flexibility to encourage following children's interests and developing learning opportunities from these. We also have had programmes implemented in Syndicates depending on the needs, age and stage of our children which allows for science components to be planned for. These are named Discovery time in the junior syndicate. This is from our school website

This year has seen lots of learning around Ngawha which has included investigating what is the geo thermal habitat that Ngawha is located on and learning about the science behind the mineral rich hot waters of Ngawha springs, visiting Ngawha and understanding the local and cultural significance of this local, natural resource.

Following on as with previous years, teachers have been more focused on following the children’s interests in science.Tamariki have been more engaged and Teachers and students are able but not limited to drawing from the umbrella topic as a starting point for learning.

More emphasis is placed on child centred learning and not teacher driven learning. Each year the learning that takes place can look completely different as children's interests change and their knowledge of the big ideas continue to deepen.

Teachers teach this subject through a cross curricular format or integration. Such investigations are delivered during literacy/Maths/Inquiry times or Discovery 

Teaching and learning strategies to address the above

Topics:  Kaitiakitanga,   Planet earth and beyond - gardening, outer space, planets, Matariki, Healthy food, cooking  and choices. living world - what makes things grow/survive. Harakeke cutting, climate change and global warming, The Living world - gardening club, growing things, life cycle of the monarch butterfly. A particular focus on the nature of science, so we can learn to focus on examining objects and reactions like scientists.

Gardening and cooking seem to be a constant science focus within the school all year round.  

Staff have aimed to create an awareness of Matariki -The Maori new year. 

Discovery time involves our new entrant - Year 1/2 classes and has begun with increased teacher awareness and knowledge of the importance of ‘play’. This play allows for inquiry, The New Zealand Curriculum and the Early Childhood Curriculum, Te Whāriki. Science is evident through the children’s experimenting and play with sand, water, dough, paints and investigations. They are predicting, analysing, reasoning, thinking, experimenting and exploring. They are gaining confidence in their own abilities and thinking. Te Whāriki is linked into our sciences with Exploration - Mana Aoturoa where “they develop working theories for making sense of the natural, social, physical and material worlds.

At a Kahui Ako level we have developed a matrix of suggestions for a more localised curriculum. This includes local resources, ideas at each level and resources. This will help teachers and syndicates to plan for more local based science learning. 

Looking Ahead

The rest of the year will be guided by the interests and ideas of the Tamariki. Next year we will continue to localise our learning and find ways where science will be a focus for learning. 

 What would we like to see happen?

Each year we continue to build on our ideas and the following is a continuum that is ever evolving depending on the needs, interests and curiosities of our tamariki.  Flexibility allows us to teach in the moment and not be so focussed on teaching Science facts.

As previously stated we would like to ‘Continue to make learning more child interest based with more successful provocations to inspire curiosity in science. We need to ensure the concepts taught are relevant to the students in terms of who they are, their hapu and iwi affiliation as well as their wider community. e.g Te Ao Maori lense.” The teaching focus is to be ‘hand on’ as much as possible while also ensuring we provide authentic learning contexts.

Targeted purchases of equipment, resources, experiences and time need to be made in relation to specific teaching intentions.

This year’s Science budget is linked to the Literacy/Maths/EOTC areas.