What’s the problem? How do I solve it? Did it work?

School News May 23, 2019
What’s the problem? How do I solve it? Did it work?

The pupils of WAIS have been learning science by doing science. Grades 3, 4 and 5 have been focusing on Scientific Inquiry and the Scientific Method. This involves teaching them how to think, learn, solve problems and make informed decisions. These skills are integral to every aspect of a pupil’s education and life, from primary school to university! 

Our lessons have been inquiry based projects and activities which have been constructed from the Changing States, Light and Space units of our Science Curriculum. The pupils have been challenged to make observations, look for patterns, analyse data and through that process construct deeper understanding.

Children are naturally curious. Our science lessons aim to nurture this curiosity and allow them to ask questions and develop the skills they need to answer those questions. So which chocolate would melt quicker; milk, white or dark? What do you predict? Why do you think the dark chocolate melted the fastest? What does this tell us? The classroom becomes a thriving environment for learning as the children are eager to share they thoughts and suggestions.

Grade 5 were set this enquiry based activity to find out if light travels in straight lines or waves? What happens if they involve the mirrors and other props? How is light affected by different materials? These questions draw out the pupil’s sense of wonder and they are excited by their discoveries, motivating them to share discuss and debate their ideas with others. These pupil- to- pupil and pupil- to- teacher discussions not only support science learning, but also lead to the further development of language and new vocabulary.

The process pupils learn when creating, executing, evaluating and communicating the results of an experiment can be applied to further challenges they may face in school, such as proving a point in a persuasive essay. These problem solving skills have been embedded in our weekly science lessons, making it an important lesson, not only because it gives them the critical thinking skills they need in all other subjects, but it also engages them in science from an early age.