Best Practice

The challenges facing primary science education

Primary science education faces some key challenges since it was overhauled in the national curriculum reforms, including questions over how well ‘working like a scientist’ is promoted and how confident teachers are to deliver lessons. Deborah Roberts explains

In 2013 the government released its plans to make changes to the primary national curriculum. For most of the children in the UK this resulted in them following the new curriculum from September 2014.

Pupils in years 2 and 6 followed the old programmes of study for English, maths and science until September 2015, while pupils in the other year groups started the new programmes from September 2014. This created some confusion for parents, pupils and teachers alike, particularly for parents with children in different year groups.

The content of the new curriculum didn’t change a great deal when compared to the old one. For example, pupils still studied plants and animals in addition to forces and magnetism. Seasonal changes remained but switched key stages.

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