Literacy in science
Schools which are successful in narrowing the gaps and reducing underperformance in science focus on improving their literacy strategies in science.
Senior leaders, science subject leaders and teachers can review their practice against the section on literacy in science on the Strategies and outcomes for narrowing the gap in science table.
Some pupils find that their literacy skills are a barrier to learning science. When you help pupils, particularly underachieving pupils, to develop their speaking and listening, reading and writing in science they make better progress.
You can learn from other subject teachers such as English or English as an additional language specialists how to develop all aspects of literacy in science. Senior leaders can also help you by supporting a whole-school focus on literacy to help underachieving pupils.
Strategies for use in school
You can help pupils by giving them structured opportunities to:
- talk through their ideas, develop explanations and arguments
- make decisions about scientific questions before they read or write about them
- use scaffolded talk, reading and writing in science lessons.
There are a range of resources and approaches which will support literacy in science. These focus on:
- effective group talk
- research skills
- scientific writing.
More resources are available on: