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Science in Primary Schools


Targeted support:

This support has two strands. The in-depth support is for:

  • Primary schools from year 0 to 8 who have identified science as a major focus in their school documentation, who have applied and been accepted for Supplementary Support, and have been allocated to the project by the Regional Ministry of Education.  Support is needs based and the resulting programmes are designed in collaboration with the school as a direct result of in-depth scoping. 

The cluster model;

  • consists of a series of clusters designed to involve a large number of schools to disseminate information and develop understanding about the MOE’s science capabilities resources.

Expected outcomes:

Schools will have a clear understanding of the purpose of science in the New Zealand curriculum.

Teachers will have increased confidence and capability in science education.

Science montage        





Methods of delivery:

The in-depth strand of this project is a flexible and tailored PLD programme which is responsive to schools’ needs.

The cluster strand offers schools two workshops approximately six weeks apart along with online support to support teachers to explore how the science capabilities can support science education.

For those schools on the in-depth programme: Personalized action plans will be developed to address teacher and student needs in science education. Action plans may include a focus on: pedagogies in science, leadership and management aspects, community consultation. The length of time on the project is dependent on school needs but the overall contract has an expiration date of 31 January 2017 currently.

Measured outcomes:

Support and outcomes are measured via a data collection process which includes; student surveys, teacher surveys, effectiveness surveys and focus student interviews. 

Relationships with parents, whānau and iwi:

The Science in primary schools professional learning project;

  • Supports teachers to explore science education within a supportive structure
  • Offers schools inclusive ways of working that encourage and develop student engagement
  • Encourages an open inquiry approach that allows for community involvement


The focus of this PLD is on changing the focus from exclusively on science content knowledge to a focus on understanding how science works and how it can inform students in their futures. 

Schools need to provide teaching and learning approaches that provide students with a library of experiences that allow for focus on scientific literacy as a principal goal and framework for instruction by integrating science content, science process skills, and the nature of science in ways that promote accurate understandings of science. 

Sustainability will be determined by schools maintaining a focus on what they are teaching within science and why.

Science Impact story (2014)  Science Infographic (2013)
Science Impact story (2015) Science Infographic (2014)
Science Infographic (2015)  


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