The specialist Science program is seen as one of the ‘jewels in the GK crown’ as students are offered a program that very few primary schools have on offer. In Victoria, Science is a compulsory subject from Prep – Year 10 so it is viewed as vitally important in an age where society needs more scientists, in more fields, more than ever before.
At GK all students, from Prep to Year 6, have one 50 minute Science lesson every week in the Science room with specialist Coach Brown and her assistant, Skelly the skeleton. Each week students are keen to enter the Science room just to see Skelly and what he’s dressed up in, as there’s always a story behind it, linked to a variety of curriculum areas.
There are four areas in the Victorian Science Curriculum: chemical, physical, biological, Earth and space. There is so much to learn that except for Prep, Science is a two year program, odd year and even year, to ensure the entire Victorian Curriculum is covered by all GK students, making them well prepared for Secondary School Science. There are also bonus topics covered such as Dinosaurs in Years 1-2 and Body Systems in Years 5-6. Students are also given the opportunity to be involved in term based challenges, for example, Year 5-6 can learn the first twenty elements of the periodic table (or more) and recite them to Coach Brown when Chemical Science is the focus. Sometimes students perform at whole school assemblies too!
Students in Years 5-6 bring their own iPads to Science class where information is placed on Apps like Popplet and Pic Collage then uploaded onto Seesaw for feedback and viewing by parents and family members. In Years 3-4, students have access to iPads in the Science room and use Pic Collage to upload to Seesaw. In Prep, Years 1-2, students can either take photos or short videos on Seesaw and upload with a caption to share what they are learning about in Science classes. Seesaw is an excellent viewing platform so that parents can be reassured about what their child is involved in and what they are focusing on in classes.
Lessons are focused on the Victorian Science Understandings and Elaborations with a major emphasis on hands-on, real-life activities, theories and concepts that engage students with less emphasis on writing. Lego is often used allowing students to express themselves creatively about various topics and challenges. Students have a clear understanding of the Learning Intentions and Success Criteria as individual lessons and over the course of each term as these are visible for all four programs. Many topics cross over with other curriculum areas, like Maths, Music, History, Geography and PE. Students conduct investigations, make predictions and observations using all of their senses, they record data, often using tables and analyse the data they collect to draw conclusions and make statements about what they have learned. Self-assessments and providing feedback about Science classes each term is an integral part of the overall Science program to ensure students are given the opportunity to have what is referred to as ‘student voice and agency’.
Before students say goodbye to Skelly and Coach Brown to leave the Science room, they all say together, “Expand your brain, use your imagination and have fun!” as a weekly reminder that that is how we learn Science best at GK! Come see for yourself!
Coach Brown and Skelly
Feather and Hammer (Gravity drop) Oreo (Moon Phases) Physical Science
Prep Chemistry Magnetism Lego Croc Creation