The New Curriculum: Y3

Continuing our ventures into dissecting the new science curriculum, here is a detailed look at the changes to be implemented in Y3. This is where things get especially interesting, as Mr Gove et al have given the OK to schools discontinuing the 2000 curriculum in Y3 and 4 as of this month. Effectively, this gives the chance to ease into the new curriculum and maul it around a bit before it’s officially in place. At Primary Scientists, we will be doing just this, and will be recording our adventures in implementing the new curriculum, with accompanying lesson plans and resources.

In Y3,  there are areas which remain essentially unaltered, some which have seen some adjustment, and other units which have been completely added or removed.

Most of the additions are, more accurately, translocations. Interestingly, these areas (forces, sound) have both been moved up from their traditional KS1 homes; also interestingly, they are both Physics. A short rant before returning to impartiality: physics has already been quite poorly covered in many schools; why diminish it in importance further by delaying it so far into the curriculum? There’s also the issue, for the next couple of years at least, of Y3 pupils being “introduced” to concepts they have previously met in KS1.

Rocks and soils is now simply ‘Rocks’. Moving out soils is perhaps questionable, but does allow for some more in-depth and engaging Geological learning and experiments. Of course, such removals on paper don’t mean a wholesale embargo on these areas; indeed it would be hard to not make reference to soils as well, especially as a means of extending G & T pupils.

The Biology components are less drastically changed in Y3, although there is now a thematic focus on transport in both animals and plants.

As usual, we have prepared a detailed table of comparisons between the existing 2000 QCA units and the new curriculum,  available to download here: y3 science curriculum changes. Enjoy!


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