Last week saw the students at St Mary’s Lower Primary celebrate Science week. The pupils at the school took part in a range of science-related activities and learnt about scientists to mark the occasion.

Nursery explored the properties of materials through a series of messy play activities such as ‘Gelli-Baff’ trays, shaving foam letter practice, waterbead and rainbow rice exploration and learning about how germs spread using milk and food colouring.

Reception learned about Florence Nightingale and engaged in hands-on science related activities such as planting lentils and exploring light and shadow using a ‘blackout box’. Reception undertook STEM activities such as making a trap for the Gingerbread man, building rainbows with duplo and finding ‘dinosaur’ fossils in oobleck.

These types of activities are brilliant for sparking children’s natural curiosity, developing language and fine motor skills and capturing their interest. The children are often exposed to this type of immersive learning through our excellent Early Years curriculum provision, however, as Science Coordinator, it was great to see the children really get stuck in and enjoy the science elements of their intentional play,” commented Mrs Stych.

Year 1 and 2 looked at the life and works of Marie Curie and Louis Paster respectively, and engaged in STEM activities and experiments within their class bubbles. Experiments included understanding how germs spread by using glitter and a mouldy bread experiment. Children undertook STEM challenges like using junk modelling items to build the bridge which could hold the most weight; and they explored materials by building homes for the 3 little pigs in an attempt to see which material could best withstand the ‘blowing’ of the wolf’s hairdryer. They made their own ‘bouncy balls’, fizzy potions, and conducted independent experiments.

Towards the end of the week the children were invited to watch science demonstrations in the school playground. Mrs Stych and Mr Capurro treated the eager children to a number of demonstrations, including elephant toothpaste, a Mentos and cola drink experiment and a number of different projectiles were created using vinegar and bicarbonate of soda. The response from the children was excellent and the excitement within the school was palpable.

Science is an intrinsic and fundamental part of the curriculum. Although this Science Week has been unable to be like others, due to COVID restrictions, the children and teachers have enjoyed a week of fun science experiments and learning. My hope is that next year we will be able to invite children’s loved ones in to conduct the experiments with them and add that much missed community element to our science week,” concluded Mrs Stych.