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National Curriculum

Science and the national curriculum aims

Science has a distinctive contribution to make to the aims of the national curriculum. The science programme of study provides opportunities to plan sequences of work, learning outcomes and teaching approaches that develop:

Successful learners

The relevance of science at a global, national, local and personal level can inspire students to develop enquiring minds and become successful learners who enjoy learning, make progress and achieve.

The investigative and practical nature of the subject provides opportunities for students to explore and learn through various approaches. In addition, the science programme of study supports the development of essential:

  • literacy skills, through discussion and the use of scientific vocabulary and terminology

  • numeracy skills, through obtaining, recording and analysing data

  • ICT skills, through using data logging and analysis, internet research, modelling and simulation software, and appropriate methods for communicating scientific information.

Science encourages students to think creatively and be resourceful, through processing information, reasoning, questioning and evaluating, in order to solve a range of scientific problems.

Confident individuals

The science programme of study develops confident individuals who are able to live safe, healthy and fulfilling lives. The investigative and practical nature of the subject provides opportunities to assess and manage risk. The study of science enables students to make informed decisions about many aspects of their lives. These include those related to healthy lifestyle choices, such as decisions about substance abuse and sexual health, and those related to sustainability, such as decisions about global climate change.

Responsible citizens

The science programme of study illustrates the importance of using science responsibly in order for science and those using science to make a positive contribution to society. It provides opportunities for students to consider scientific and technological developments and the advantages and disadvantages that scientists, individuals and society need to think about before making decisions that will affect the future. It enables students to consider the ethical and moral implications of science and the importance of sustainable development. The study of science also takes into account different societal and cultural approaches, allowing students to appreciate its diverse global dimension and recognise the contributions made by men and women from all over the world to the development of the subject.

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