Nagle-Rice PS
Co. Kerry

Phone: 066 976 7625


Whole School Plan for Science for Nagle-Rice Primary School.

Introductory Statement:

This plan was formulated by the teachers of Nagle-Rice P.S. following introductory science inservice days and in-school planning days.


We focussed on this area of planning to ensure that the revised guidelines for science were introduced in our school in an organised, coherent and accountable manner. This plan will benefit the teacher by informing class planning and teaching and will provide the pupils with adequate opportunities to develop skills and understanding of concepts as envisaged by the science curriculum.


Through our science programme, we aim to help pupils to come to an understanding of and take an interest in the physical and biological world and environments around them. We believe that science should be a practical subject with opportunities to engage in hands on investigative work. To this end we will consciously develop childrens’ scientific skills as well as their scientific knowledge.

Environmental activities will foster a positive attitude and a sense of resposibility in our pupils for the natural and human environments.


(Page 11 of curriculum statement)
The aims of social, environmental and scientific education are:

Curriculum Planning

1.1Science Programme:

Strands and Strand Units: (Refer to Science Curriculum pp. 20 – 92)
• Myself
Variety and characteristics of humans
Human life processes
• Human Life
Variety and characteristics of
Human life processes
• Plants and animals/Plant and
animal life
Variety and characteristics of living things Processes of life.



Heating and cooling

Mixing, separating and other changes



Working scientifically

Sorting and classifying

Recognising patterns

• Recording and communicating

Designing and making

Colour coding for entry point of specific content: Infants, First & Second, Third & Fourth, Fifth & Sixth.

We have prepared a two-year plan for each class level. We have included work from each strand unit for each year (see appendix 1). We have selected a range of content objectives from each strand unit to ensure breadth and balance in science throughout the class levels. In the plan we have included a range of habitat studies based on our immediate environment for each class grouping.We will use a balanced mix of theme-based approaches to SESE, linking with other curricular areas.

1.2 Children’s Ideas:

We will use children’s ideas as a starting point for all scientific activity

Strategies we will use to elicit children’s ideas are:

1.3 Practical Investigations:

When planning practical investigations we will use

(We will consult the Teacher Guidelines pg 54 in this regard)

1.4 Classroom Management:

A combined approach of whole class work, small group work and individual work on chosen topics and projects will be used in each class.
Children will be given opportunities to work together collaboratively and share their own ideas. Each classroom will have a science display area.
We encourage both the investigative approach and the teacher-directed approach.

Teachers will use their professional judgement to decide which methods and approaches are best suited to the needs of their pupils.

1.5 Key Methodologies:

We plan to use the key methodologies of the Primary Curriculum in the teaching of Science:

We have also identified the following as methodologies particular to Science and will employ them where possible:

1.6 Linkage and Integration:

We encourage the linkage of strands within the science curriculum and the integration of science with other subject areas such as:

1.7 Using the Environment

We have identified areas of the school grounds and the surrounding Locality that will be of use in supporting our science programme. Each class will engage in designated habitat studies:

Junior to Second:

Wall in school yard

Grass area near yard

Spring/summer flowers in grounds

Seasonal study of trees in the school grounds

Minibeasts on concrete surface area

Study of a logpile/stonepile in school grounds

Birds in our school grounds

Vegetable patch in school garden


3rd – 6th class

Study of grass area behind school

Birds in our school grounds

Trees in our school grounds

Woodland habitat at Keelocloghane

Vegetable patch in the school garden

Spring/Summer flowers and fruit in the school garden

Abha Solais stream

1.8 Balance between Knowledge and Skills:

Science is not only concerned with the acquisition of knowledge but the understanding of concepts. We can nurture this understanding by developing skills of; questioning, observing, predicting, investigating, analysing and recording and therefore acquiring knowledge. Children will explore, plan and analyse materials through design and make activities. Pupils will be given an opportunity to engage in Design and Make activities appropriate to their abilities and area of study.

2. Assessment

2.1 Looking at Childrens’ Work:

In science we will assess

2.2 Assessment will be in the form of:

There will be opportunities for the pupils to engage in self-assessment as they analyse the success of design and make activities and get an opportunity to view their own work samples. Information from assessment will be communicated to parents at the parent/teacher meetings.

3. Children with Additional Needs:

It is important that all children experience a rounded environmental education. Science plays a pivotal role in this education and so we will do our best to ensure that every child will have opportunities to engage in learning activities appropriate to their abilities.

4. Equality of Participation and Access:

(Refer to Equality Policy)

*Boys and girls will be have equal opportunities to participate in science lessons and activities.

*Equal opportunity will be given to boys and girls to experience all strands.

*Provision will be made for children experiencing any form of disadvantage or whose first language is not English, when the need may arise.

Science will be for all children regardless of gender, age or ability.

5. Organisational Planning

5.1 Timetable

In keeping with the recommendations in the Primary School Curriculum Introduction (page 70) a minimum of two and a quarter hours per week is devoted to SESE in infant classes and a minimum of three hours per week for classes 1st to 6th.

*On occasion, time will be blocked as appropriate. This might occur when

Teachers will use discretionary curriculum time ( 2 hours per week) for SESE as appropriate.

6. Resources and Equipment:

7. Safety:

We have a Health and Safety policy in place in our school which covers safety concerning the handling of equipment and out of school activities such as fieldwork.
During practical work teachers will be aware of the safety implications of any exploratory or investigative work to be undertaken. Successful and enjoyable investigations require sensible planning, good supervision and adherence to safety rules.

Outdoor work will be based in areas that are accessible for children, teachers and helpers and that are safe. Preliminary visits by teachers to the site will be necessary to identify potential hazards. If there are apparent dangers then a more suitable habitat will be selected for study. Habitat studies involve children working with plants and animals, and teachers will be made aware that some children may be allergic to some animals and plants.

When designing investigative activities teachers will find useful safety advice in the Teacher Guidelines for Science and in Safety in School Science ( An Roinn Oideachais 1996).

We will also consult the “Be Safe” handbook ( The Association for Science Education) for advice on safety during such activities.

8. Individual Teachers’ Planning and Reporting:

Teachers will consult this Whole School Plan and the curriculum documents for Science when they are drawing up their long and short term plans.

Teachers will include all the strands and strand units every year and will select objectives within the strand units each year.

Where it is meaningful and suitable Science will be taught in a thematic way to integrate with the other SESE subjects of History and Geography.

The Cúntas Míosúil will assist in recording work covered, in evaluating progress in Science and in informing future teaching.

9. Staff Development:

10. Parental Involvement:

11. Community Links:

12. Homework:

Homework may be given in the form of project work, research, worksheets and discussion at the discretion of the Class Teacher.
Success Criteria

We shall review this whole school plan in the future under the following headings:

Means of assessing the outcomes of the plan will include:


The plan will be supported, developed and implemented by the teachers, pupils, parents and B.O.M of Nagle-Rice P.S. This plan will be implemented in January 2011.


It will be necessary to review this plan on a regular basis to ensure optimum implementation of the Science curriculum. We aim to review this plan in September 2014.
On this date we will refer to the tasks in our action plan and check that they have been completed in accordance with the agreed time frame. Those involved in the review will be the teachers.

Ratification and Communication:

This plan was ratified by the Board of Management on _______25-01-2011_____________


Appendix 1

Nagle Rice Primary School Programme of science work.

Infants to Second Class   Living Things Materials Energy & Forces Environmental awareness & care
Year 1 Unit 1 Trees in the park Wood   Caring for the local area
 Autumn term Unit 2   Houses and homes  
Unit 3 My senses-ears and hearing Sound
Unit 4 My senses- eyes and seeing Light
Winter-Spring term Unit 1 Growing and changing  
Unit 2 The farm   Caring for plants and animals
Unit 3   Materials and change  
Unit 4     Magnetism
Summer term Unit 1     Floating and sinking
Unit 2 The pond     Caring for plants and animals
Unit 3       The school garden
 Unit 4    Wet & dry  


Infants to Second Class   Living Things Materials Energy & Forces Environmental awareness & care
Year 2 Unit 1   Heat
 Autumn term Unit 2 Seasonal change in living things   Caring for living things
Unit 3   Clothes  
Unit 4 Myself  
Winter-Spring term Unit 1     Caring for a local habitat
Unit 2 Growing seeds & plants  
Unit 3     Electricity
Unit 4   Mixing different materials  
Summer term Unit 1 Animals & plants near my school     
Unit 2   Toys Pushing & pulling
Unit 3       Litter
 Unit 4   Materials in my classroom  


3rd &  4th


Year 1

Living Things


Energy and Forces

Environmental Awareness and Care


Human Life – Healthy Eating Properties & Characteristics– Materials and absorption Light-Colour spectrum- Reflections Environmental awareness/Caring for our Environment- Green School Programme

Autumn Term

Plant & Animal-Hibernation Materials & Change-Mixing and Disolving Science and the Environment-Bridges
Human Life- Teeth  Properties & Characteristics of MaterialsSoft and Hard Materials Sound – Investigating sound waves Caring for the EnvironmentRenewable Energy

Winter –Spring Term

Plant & Animals-Birds Materials & Change-Mixture and Separation

Summer Term

Human Life-Bones & Muscles Properties and Characteristics of Materials-Waterproof  Materials Forces-BalanceForces-Gravity Science and the EnvironmentEarthworm / Composting


Habitat Study-Knockreer House Materials and Change-Effects of  heating and cooling water Environmental AwarenessWild Flowers


3rd & 4th


Year 2

Living Things


Energy and Forces

Environmental Awareness and Care

Autumn Term  Human Life-Skin and Hair Properties and Characteristics materials-          Materials that do not mix Electricity-          Circuits and Switches Environment Awareness / Caring for the Environment-          Green Schools
  Habitat Study-          Investigating plants and animal life in school yard Materials and change-          Evaporation and separation of salt and water Science and the Environment-How science helps us in medicine.
Winter-spring Term  Human life-          My senses Properties  and  characteristics of materials-          Conductors and insulators Heat-          Heat and Cold Caring for the Environment-          Origins of food and food production
   Plants and Animals-          Classification of animals Materials and change-          Kitchen chemicals and simple chemical reactions
Summer Term Human Life-          Hearing Properties and Characteristics of  Materials-          Solids, Liquids & Gases Magnetism-          North/South Poles of magnets and compass Science and the Environment-          School Garden
    Materials & change-          Way of separating materials Magnetism-          Explore materials that are magnetic and how to make a magnet
Plant and animals-          Life cycle of a butterfly  


4th & 5th Class 


Living Things


Energy and Forces

Environmental Awareness and Care

  Habitat StudySchool GroundsFootball Pitch Properties of materialsSolid  Liquid Gas Electricity Reduce Reuse Recycle
Autumn Term Grown from seed Materials and Change Static Electricity Green Flag awarness
RespiratorySystemThe Lungs  RustingHeating and  Cooling Danger of Electricity
Plant and AnimalsMinibeasts  
Winter-spring Term   Heat
 Sight – the human eye Keeping food fresh Water and air pollution
  Brilliant Bones   Acid Rain
Plant and animal Wild Flowers  
Summer Term   Our WorldGlobal Warming
   Plants & animalsWater Birds Food PyramidFood Properties Magnetism
Digestive System  


4th & 5th Class 


Living Things


Energy and Forces

Environmental Awareness and Care

Autumn Term

 I’m all ears Famous Scientists Light Science and the Environment
  Healthy Eating A helping hand from Science How science has has a positive and adverse effect on the environment
Food chains   Solar Panel
Winter-spring Term  Bird Study Investigating Fabrics
  Animals moving animals  
Sedentary animals  
Summer Term   WaterSurface Tension Sound
Human Reproduction(for fifth and 6th Classes) Mix separate SolutionWater insects Renewable energy sourcesNon renewable energy sources
Habitat StudyAbha Solais


5th & 6th CLASS Year 1

Living Things


Energy and Forces

Environmental Awareness and Care

Autumn Term  Habitat Study

  • School Grounds
  • Trees How plants grow


Properties and characteristics of Materials Light – reflectionRainbowsMirrorsPrisms

Light tricks

The TV

The Camera

Awareness of Green School/Flag etc
  Human Life

  • Digestive System
  • Brain



Type of material separation
Plants & Animals

  • Part of flower
  • Wild flowers


Winter-spring Term Human Life

  • Heart
  • Ear



Solid Liquid Gas –change to Science and the Environment

  • Famine & hunger
  • Mound & Fungus
Plants & Animals

  • Birds in the garden
  • Studying birds



Famous Scientists Sound

  •  how sounds travel
  • the telephone
  • sound waves
  • Wormery/Compost
  • Food Chains
Summer Term Human Life

  • Blood
  • Birds/Migration


Changing materialsColours/separation Forces –

  • Levels & pulleys
  • Balancing
Caring for the environment

  • Renewable energy
  • Water treatment
   Plants & AnimalsWhales, Dolphins, Fungi etc. Properties of common metals(rusting etc)


5th & 6th Year 2

Living Things


Energy and Forces

Environmental Awareness and Care

Autumn Term  Habitat StudyRainforestThe Burren Investigatingwood and use of itMan-made fibres Magnets/Electricity

  • Switches
  • Conductor
  • Insulators
  • Batteries
  • Wiring a Plug
  • Fuses
  • Electromagnets
  • Magnetic poles


Green flag school and why?
Winter-spring Term  Human Life –

  • Respiratory System
Heating/Cooling WaterEvaporation Heat – properties of / effects on materials Science and the EnvironmentOrganic food and GardeningSchool garden
  Famous Irish Scientists
  Plants & Animals –

  • Animals of the  hedgerow


Summer Term Human Life

  • Skin & Temperature
Paper through the ages/ usesNatural Fibres ForcesSubmarinesScuba Diving Caring for the EnvironmentReduce/Reuse/RecycleWater pollution
   Plants & Animals

  • Mammals

Appendix 2

Nagle Rice Senior School Science Equipment

Living Things

Bug Collectors X 5

2- Way Bug Viewer

Hand Magnifiers X12

Jumbo Magnifier



Croc Clips x 10

Panel Buzzers x 5

Test Circuit

Switches (homemade with blocks of timber)

Electricity Kit (wire cutters, battery holders, screwdrivers, bulbs, wire)


Horseshoe Magnets x 3

Wand Magnets x 3

10cm Bar Magnets x 2

5cm Bar Magnets x 2

Grey Ring Magnets x 20

Coloured Ring Magnets x 5

U Magnet x 1

Square Magnets x 10

Small Disc Magnets x 10

Ball Magnets

Iron Fillings

The Human Body

Body Reveal

The Human Body Posters

Human Anatomy Flip Chart

Skeleton Floor Puzzle

Model of the Heart


12” Midi Concave Mirrors X 2


Kaleidoscopes (2 Flat & 2 curved)

Push Pull Spring Balance

Litmus Papers

Graduated Cylinders

Selection of Syringes – 2ml, 5ml, 10ml, 20ml

Science Ball


Let’s Make It Work With Magnets


Primary Science – Electricity

Primary Science – Light

Primary Science – Magnets

Windows on the World Science: Books 4, 5 & 6 (Edco)

What a Wonderful World! 4th. – 6th (CJ Fallon)

Science Quest 4 – 6 ( CJ Fallon)

Earthlink: 4th -6th (Folens)

Nagle Rice Junior School Science Equipment

Pooters x 10

Magnifying top

Weighing Scales


Measuring spoons x16

Measuring tape

Measuring jug

Torches x 3

Plotting compass x 40


Latex gloves

Filter paper

Large mirror x 1

Small mirror x 10

Magnet and Spring Kit

Box of magnets