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"Excellent science lessons" earn primary schools prestigious mark

Thursday 27 September 2018

"Excellent science lessons" earn primary schools prestigious mark

Thursday 27 September 2018


Forest Primary, Notre Dame du Rosaire and Le Rondin schools have all been recognised for their top-tier science teaching by a national organisation.

The schools have been awarded a Primary Science Quality Mark thanks to the efforts of both their teachers and students.

To achieve the award, primary science subject leads have carried out a rigorous programme of development to raise the profile and quality of science teaching and learning.

Forest were the first to receive their award yesterday, as Jane Turner, the Director of PSQM, and Andrew Warren, Guernsey's Director of Education, were shown around the school by Deputy Head Adrian Paul and three students, Peter Lydall, 10, Charlie Wilson, nine, and Poppy Bisson, 10.

psqm forest students

Pictured L-R: Peter Lydall, Poppy Bisson and Charlie Wilson. 

The pupils told Ms Turner that science was their "absolute favourite subject" because of all the things they got to do, see and learn in the lessons.

Charlie said his standout science lesson was when they made volcanoes, and had a competition to see whose was the best - he found the topic really interesting, particularly watching them explode.

"Right now we are learning about MRS NERG (an acronym) for the life cycle" Poppy added, "we went to Saumarez Park to see all sorts of living things."

Jessica de la rue

Pictured: Jessica de la Rue is one of Guernsey's primary school science leads.

Jessica de la Rue [pictured above] is the lead teacher for science at Forest, and she emphasised how much the PSQM course had helped her, and helped bring science to the forefront of the children's learning.

"Science is a great subject, they all really do love it because of how much they learn, and get to do - but it also helps develop their core skills of thinking and problem solving," she said.

"The support I have received from PSQM has been outstanding and they have enabled me to develop as a leader in science and efficiently manage action plan targets. The course is open to teachers in general and I really recommend it."

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Pictured: Andrew Warren, Director of Education and former headteacher of Forest, talking about the award.

Ms Turner said the facilities at Forest School were particularly enviable, as the school has a large Eco Zone, a garden, and plenty of outdoors space.

"It is an honour to have been invited over to Guernsey to present the awards. The impact that the scheme has had on schools that have been involved is evident and gaining the award is a significant achievement for them.

"The profile and quality of science teaching and learning in each awarded school is very high. Children are engaging with great science both in and outside of the classroom, developing positive attitudes towards science as well as secure science understanding and skills. Science subject leaders and their colleagues should be veryproud.”

Following her visit to Forest, she and Mr Warren went over to Le Rondin. Then today, they visited Notre Dame to present them with their certificate. 

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Pictured: Jennifer Spencer, Rory and Dylan and Jane Turner. 

Jennifer Spencer, Science Subject Lead at Le Rondin, said: "Since incorporating the PSQM programme into the school, children are now able to explore and investigate their own questions and ideas and can lead the focus of the topic. The children’s questions are valued and they now have ownership of their learning and the teachers can focus on teaching the skills that apply to all contexts. PSQM has also enabled me to develop my leadership skills and confidence to lead a subject across the whole school."

Claire Burchell, Notre Dame du Rosaire subject lead, added: "Science at Notre Dame is now changing children’s perceptions of science and its implications on their lives in the changing world around them. The school community has worked together to develop a science teaching & learning environment in which children can explore, wander and develop their skills.

"Through undertaking PSQM, families have shared in the new-found enthusiasm for science through participating in home learning challenges, Science Fairs and developing the outside learning spaces at school."

Pictured: The first presentation took place at Forest Primary School.

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