Thomas Jolyffe Primary School

Thomas Jolyffe Primary School


How children learn to be scientists @TJ...

In Reception, children begin their scientific journey at Thomas Jolyffe by learning how caterpillars turn into butterflies, visiting the Forest School and watching how flowering plants change.  They investigate different materials thinking about the most suitable materials for making boats and raincoats.  They learn about different environments, such as India and the seaside, which link with geography.


In Year 1, children’s learning progresses by finding out about different kinds of plants and animals.  They find out about materials and how they can be grouped.  Children learn to name the body parts and find out about the five human senses.  They observe changes across the four seasons and the weather associated with each season.

Progressing into Year 2, children learn in a little more depth about what animals and humans need in order to survive and grow. They explore and compare the difference between things that are living, dead and things that have never been alive. They learn to identify and compare the suitability of everyday materials for particular uses.  By the end of year 2 children can observe and describe how seeds and bulbs grow into mature plants, making them KS2 ready.


At the start of the Juniors, Year 3 children start to broaden their understanding of how their bodies work and how to keep healthy.  They learn about light and how shadows are formed. Children compare and group materials based upon whether they are attracted to a magnet as well as observing how magnets attract and repel. Children discover how to compare different kinds of rocks and describe how a fossil is formed.


In Year 4, children progress to learn about classification of living things.  They investigate different states of matter, observing how some materials change state when they are heated or cooled.  Children find out how sound travels and learn how to make simple electric circuits, leaving them equipped to progress into the upper KS2 curriculum of science.

By the end of Year 5 children have learnt to describe the differences in life cycles of mammals, amphibians, insects and birds. They learn about forces, finding out the effects of water resistance, air resistance and friction.  Children investigate reversible and irreversible changes in some materials.  They learn to describe the movement of the Earth, and other planets, relative to the sun.


Children in Year 6 learn about the circulatory system and how the heart functions.  They recognise the impact of diet, exercise, drugs and lifestyle impacts the way their bodies function. Classification, first introduced in year 4, is built upon and children learn to give reasons for classifying plants and animals based on specific characteristics. Evolution and how plants and animals are reproduced is also studied in year 6, along with learning about different kinds of electrical circuits and how to build circuits from circuit diagrams, leaving the children in good stead for science at KS3.


Mrs H. Anderson - Science Coordinator

‘Children are captivated by their learning’, ‘The well-being of pupils is at the heart of the school’, ‘School is a calm place - pupils are polite, courteous and well-mannered’