Developing Investigative Skills in Primary Science
at the National Space Centre
An interesting and wholly relevant course devised with the National Space
Centre in direct response to comments from regional focus groups and
The day will suggest exciting, manageable, hands-on science
activities for Key Stage 2 pupils. These will be linked to the QCA scheme of
work. Suggestions for integrating science, literacy, D&T and ICT will be
provided. Mentor support via email will also be provided.
Led by Tina Jarvis and Joy Horton, the course comprises a series of three afternoon
and twilight sessions at the National Space Centre. While the overall aim will
be on developing investigative skills, each session will focus on a different
Session One Raising & Answering Questions
Context: Earth in Space
This session will examine strategies for encouraging children's questions: using
books, the internet and by investigating. It will cover practical ways of
teaching about the Earth, moon and sun, including how to cope with difficult
questions such as 'how do we know the Earth is round?'
Session Two Answering Questions through Science Investigations
The value of pre-investigation tasks, how to help pupils control variables as
well as supporting independent investigations will be covered. Can pupils do
better than Beagle II? Investigations for landing and manoeuvering Beagle III
on Mars will be tried.
Explaining and Communicating Results
Context: Human Health
A topic on Human Health can be given a creative element by considering how
a human's body is affected in space. The session will also explore
communicating science ideas in different ways, such as a TV or radio news
report and making a presentation on behalf of a lobby group. Ideas for Science
Week (11-20 March) will be provided.