Enriching Science at Grimley & Holt Primary School

At Grimley & Holt Primary School we enrich the children’s science learning experiences in a wide range of ways, from participating in National Events to welcoming outside visitors and through our Ogden Trust Partnership.  Some examples of our recent enrichments are below.   These have given the children unique opportunities to further enthuse their interest in science and to help them embed and develop skills and knowledge and understanding.

PSQM Quality Mark Awarded 

In Autumn 21, we were awarded the ‘Primary Science Quality Mark’ in recognition of our school’s commitment of endeavour to achieve high quality science teaching and learning throughout the school.  Feedback received noted that our vision ‘Excite, Challenge and Question – Loving Science for life’ was evident throughout the whole submission, with children benefitting from a variety of teaching strategies, including exploratory learning and a huge amount of enrichment activities that had been planned over the year. 

Science Vision

Becoming an Ogden Trust Hub Leader School

From Autumn 21, we joined together with 5 other local primaries and 4 local secondary schools to form an Ogden Trust Partnership.  This partnership, funded by the Ogden Trust, helps to support all teachers to improve the quality of physics teaching in our schools through quality CPD, additional resources and support from experts and the within the partnership.  Working with the Ogden Trust partnership we try to raise the profile of physics in our schools and bring families back into the classroom.  Each term we have participated in collaborative events across the partnership schools with a Physics focus, our most recent Space Camp was a huge success.

Completing an Environmental Survey through a RS Partnership Grant

In Autumn 21 we received a Grant from the Royal Society to help us investigate what levels of biodiversity we can sample and identify in and around our school grounds?  We worked with an expert team of STEM Ambassadors in the field of ecology to help us throughout the year to map and survey the land parcel adjacent to our school.  We will use this as a baseline to increase the richness of the land’s biodiversity in the future.  Some of the sampling methods the children used included, looking for visual signs, using camera traps and footprint tunnels. 

A Farmer Time School

The school is in its third year of taking part in ‘Farmer Time’.  This is an excellent initiative which brings farming into the classrooms and children get a fortnightly session with a farmer to ask questions and learn about and understand the work of a farmer.  For the second year we have been linked with Farmer Lorna, who is a dairy farmer from Devon.  The children really enjoy these sessions and are learning so much about dairy farming as she answers the children’s questions.

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Royal Society Young People’s Book Prize

This year the children became judges for the Young People’s Book Prize Competition.  The children in 5/6 distributed and read the six given texts across the Autumn term in order to be able to judge each book on its ease of reading, interest and presentation.  The children’s scores were then submitted for the Royal Society to determine the overall winner.  We were delighted that our choice, ‘If the world were 100 people’ by Jackie McCann and Aaron Cushley was in fact the overall winner.  

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Royal Society Young People’s Book Prize Video Competition

After taking part in the Royal Society Young Peoples Book Prize we entered their Video Competition.  The task was to complete a 3 minute video to explain the judging process that happened in our school and what we thought of each of the books and of course our overall winner.  The children worked in teams to present different sections that we could combine to make the overall video.  We even involved the whole school as we shared the winning book with them.  Our efforts, enthusiasm and creativity paid off.  Grimley & Holt was awarded 1st prize for their entry and are busy planning how they will spend their £500 book voucher reward.

Our Science Ambassadors

This year we are excited to announce our new Science Ambassadors that have applied for the new role from years 4 and 5.  The Science Ambassadors have been trained in a compulsory 4 week after school club, to help them develop skills to lead play and learning through science at break and lunch times.   In the process they are developing their own scientific, communication and leadership skills whilst inspiring and engaging our younger learners with an enthusiasm for science. The Science Ambassadors have been enjoying their role and using our new Phiz Lab at break and lunch times.  They have also took part as judges in the Young Peoples Book Prize 2023 and shared the 6 science texts with the children at break and lunchtimes in the 2nd half of the Autumn term.  This process has helped them cast their own votes on each book in terms of inspiration and design and helped them vote to decide on the winning book as chosen by our school.  We will have to wait until April to see if we agree with the National vote.  

In the Spring Term they have also attended further after school training to equip them to plan and deliver their own science after-school activity supported by Mrs Patterson.  The ‘Jarvellous’  Science Club will run for four weeks and is open to children from Year 1 – Year 4.  

Our Phiz Lab

We are very excited to have started work on our Science Phiz lab.   Over the Autumn half term, the wall between our science store cupboard and the intervention and computer storage space was knocked through allowing us a bigger space with science resources fully accessible to the children.  This was all able to happen, thanks to a grant received from the Ogden Trust, through our successful partnership with them. Our aim is to help children to become more independent scientists and give them the opportunity to ask their own scientific questions and plan and carry these out independently in upper key stage 2.  Our Science Ambassadors are already enjoying using the dedicated space at break and lunch times and the children in KS2 are enjoying having more space to carry out their scientific enquiries during lessons.  

We hope to officially open the Phiz Lab soon.

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