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Science at Brookfields contributes significantly to pupils’ enjoyment and understanding of the world and their place within it. It is made accessible to all pupils through a focus on practical work, first-hand experience and special events designed to inspire and engage learners. Teaching key skills such as making observations, predictions and evaluation of first hand observations are of equal importance to knowledge and understanding.
In the primary school, science is taught by class teachers and is incorporated throughout other subjects and the relevant topic at the time. This ensures a holistic approach in the acquisition of scientific skills and knowledge. The teaching of science is also linked to the REACh programme which ensures that there is a strong emphasis on engagement and communication. Pupils in White Class are also given the opportunity to transition to the secondary school science room to experience their lessons in a more mature environment.
In the upper school, Science is taught as a discreet subject by a specialist science teacher. Key Stage 3 pupil’s learning is greatly focused towards building independent and problem solving skills to allow pupils to develop their own ability to explore and find things out in science. The building of our new science laboratory has made it possible to give pupils the opportunities to engage in and experiment with high level practical science. The pupils truly enjoy these opportunities and has allowed for more independent exploration of scientific topics that are both age appropriate and academically differentiated to allow them to access these higher level topics.
Key stage 4 pupils study for externally moderated certificates through the Welshboard Science Pathways course. We have also introduced the CREST award in KS4, which is part of the British Science Association, 20 students were awarded the Bronze CREST award last academic year. This year we are entering 11 students for the Silver CREST award which is very exciting and the pupils are taking in their stride. We greatly value the skills and opportunities that this award provides for our pupils. CREST allows the pupils to direct the learning of their own scientific project whilst incorporating scientific topics that will be relevant for them to have a deeper understanding in during their life time. It further provides time and opportunities for pupils to learn from their mistakes and rectify them to move forward in their own personal projects.
Brookfields has pioneered work on sustainability over a number of years. Since 2007 the school has been awarded three Eco Schools Green Flags and been recognised as an Ambassador school in this area. Staff and pupils have previously planted an orchard area and we keep chickens. These chickens are valued all around the school, receiving visitors from many different pupils to meet a wide range of needs. There is also a strong ethos across the school of the importance of recycling and all classes are responsible for their own recycling.
Sustainability is taught in the 6th form, encouraging pupils to consider and implement strategies within their control to increase the sustainability within their homes and at Brookfield’s school.