Developing Language in Primary Science

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How can science help to develop speaking, listening, writing and reading skills?
How can developing these skills enhance children’s understanding of science?

About. This resource explains the relationship between language and the curriculum. It outlines links between language skills and science, offering examples of science work which could develop speaking and listening, reading, and writing skills. Advice on long-term planning for the development of language skills in science suggests:

  • reviewing what you already do,(planning for greater emphasis on language,
  • identifying what else happens in school and evaluating your success.

Included are example activities designed to develop children's use of language in science topics: 'moving things' 'materials'. A further document considers the topic of 'light' as a context for developing language.

Pedagogical content. The resource would be particularly useful for PGCE students thinking about incorporating cross-curricular(subject) strands, or teachers looking to do the same, either in their own practice or in new curriculum development(topic) work.

Language development and the use of appropriate vocabulary(ta) is highlighted as important across the curriculum. Incorporating this consideration into science planning(ta) is important for meeting the target of developing language. The importance of language and talk in science – including through group work(ta), and Whole class(ta) dialogue – is highlighted elsewhere (and in the resource) but includes the ability to explain concepts, understand synthesising ideas (including those from other people and texts), and the need to read and write for different purposes, (including conceptual understanding, data presentation, etc). These are key ideas in communicating the scientific method(ta) (edit)

Resource details
Title Developing Language in Primary Science
Topic Curriculum development,  Literacy
Teaching approach
Learning Objectives
  • Explaining the relationship between language use, and the science curriculum.
  • Giving examples of links between language skills and science.
  • Giving examples of activities which develop children's use of language in science.
  • Considering long-term planning for a science curriculum with language development in mind.
Subject
Age of students / grade


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Acknowledgement

This resource was adapted from resources and original ideas contributed by Paul Warwick, at the Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge.

"How can science help to develop speaking, listening, writing and reading skills? <br/> How can developing these skills enhance children’s understanding of science?" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.