The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) has published a new guidance report providing six practical recommendations, underpinned by high quality evidence, about how to make meaningful improvements to primary science teaching.
High-quality primary science teaching builds pupils’ curiosity and critical thinking, helping them to build a coherent understanding of the world around them. It’s also crucial from a social mobility point of view, opening children’s minds to the opportunities they could pursue in later life.
The Education Endowment Foundation’s (EEF) new guidance report — Improving Primary Science— is underpinned by a systematic review of the best available international evidence around effective primary science teaching practice.
It outlines six actionable recommendations to support teachers and school leaders to make improvements to their existing science provision, including how to develop pupils’ scientific vocabulary, and relate new learning to relevant, real-world contexts.
Each recommendation includes models, worked examples and suggested strategies to illustrate what the evidence could look like practice in your primary school classroom.
The report – which is free to download from the EEF’s website – is accompanied by additional resources designed to support pupils’ independence when working scientifically and prompt meaningful discussions around science professional development for staff.
Key recommendations in the report are from Thinking, Doing, Talking Science – or TDTScience – a rigorously evaluated and highly-regarded training programme for teachers that focuses on developing creative and challenging science lessons that encourage pupils to use higher-order thinking skills. TDTScience is a registered trademark of The Oxford Trust and the training programme was developed by Trust employees for more than a decade as part of its wide ranging primary science activities.
In response to the report Project Director Bridget Holligan says:
“It’s wonderful to see Thinking, Doing, Talking Science and its evidence of impact on children’s attainment and attitudes in science referenced in this comprehensive guidance report from the EEF. Science and discovery centres have a key role to play in building young people’s science capital and their belief that science is something that they can enjoy and be successful in, and the TDTScience approach was most effective for children who are more likely to have low science capital.
Our work with TDTScience shows the impact that expertise from the informal science learning sector can have on children’s attainment and attitudes in science. Over 1200 primary teachers from all over England have so far attended a full TDTScience course, and we continue to work with partners such as thePrimary Science Teaching Trust and theCentre for Industry Education Collaboration to ensure that opportunities to support them will continue.”
The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) is an independent charity dedicated to breaking the link between family income and educational achievement, by supporting schools to improve teaching and learning through better use of evidence.