The Science content includes the
three strands of science understanding, science inquiry skills and science as a
human endeavour. The three strands of the curriculum are interrelated and their
content is taught in an integrated way.
In Prep, students observe and
describe the behaviours and properties of everyday objects, materials and
living things. They explore change in the world around them, including changes
that impact on them, such as the weather, and changes they can effect, such as
making things move or change shape. They learn that seeking answers to
questions they pose and making observations is a core part of science and use
their senses to gather different types of information.
In Year 1, students infer simple
cause-and-effect relationships from their observations and experiences, and
begin to link events and phenomena with observable effects and to ask
questions. They observe changes that can be large or small and happen quickly
or slowly. They explore the properties of familiar objects and phenomena,
identifying similarities and differences. Students begin to value counting as a
means of comparing observations, and are introduced to ways of organising their
In Year 2, students describe the
components of simple systems, such as stationary objects subjected to pushes or
pulls, or combinations of materials, and show how objects and materials
interact through direct manipulation. They observe patterns of growth and
change in living things, and describe patterns and make predictions. They
explore the use of resources from Earth and are introduced to the idea of the
flow of matter when considering how water is used. They use counting and
informal measurements to make and compare observations and begin to recognise
that organising these observations in tables makes it easier to show patterns.
In Year 3, students observe heat
and its effects on solids and liquids and begin to develop an understanding of
energy flows through simple systems. In observing day and night, they develop
an appreciation of regular and predictable cycles. Students order their observations
by grouping and classifying; in classifying things as living or non-living they
begin to recognise that classifications are not always easy to define or apply.
They begin to quantify their observations to enable comparison, and learn more
sophisticated ways of identifying and representing relationships, including the
use of tables and graphs to identify trends. They use their understanding of
relationships between components of simple systems to make predictions.
In Year 4, students broaden their
understanding of classification and form and function through an exploration of
the properties of natural and processed materials. They learn that forces
include non-contact forces and begin to appreciate that some interactions
result from phenomena that can’t be seen with the naked eye. They begin to
appreciate that current systems, such as Earth’s surface, have characteristics
that have resulted from past changes and that living things form part of
systems. They understand that some systems change in predictable ways, such as
through cycles. They apply their knowledge to make predictions based on
interactions within systems, including those involving the actions of humans.
In Year 5, students are
introduced to cause and effect relationships through an exploration of
adaptations of living things and how this links to form and function. They
explore observable phenomena associated with light and begin to appreciate that
phenomena have sets of characteristic behaviours. They broaden their classification
of matter to include gases and begin to see how matter structures the world
around them. Students consider Earth as a component within a solar system and
use models for investigating systems at astronomical scales. Students begin to
identify stable and dynamic aspects of systems, and learn how to look for
patterns and relationships between components of systems. They develop
explanations for the patterns they observe.
In Year 6, students explore how
changes can be classified in different ways. They learn about transfer and
transformations of electricity, and continue to develop an understanding of
energy flows through systems. They link their experiences of electric circuits
as a system at one scale to generation of electricity from a variety of sources
at another scale and begin to see links between these systems. They develop a
view of Earth as a dynamic system, in which changes in one aspect of the system
impact on other aspects; similarly, they see that the growth and survival of
living things are dependent on matter and energy flows within a larger system.
Students begin to see the role of variables in measuring changes and the value
of accuracy in these measurements. They learn how to look for patterns and to
use these to identify and explain relationships by drawing on evidence.