Effective Teaching & Learning in Science

Why this is leading practice

Birchensale's science department over the past three years has been going from strength to strength. Recognised both internally and externally within our local community as a developing professional learning hub for pupils, teachers and members of our local community, science is a subject here, which continues to enhance its capital, year on year. Our department has a thorough core team of dedicated and experienced science teachers, outstanding classroom environments and resources, all mixed with plenty of enthusiastic young curious minds to engage with, ensuring excellent science pupil progress year on year.

Impact to date

  • There is a real commitment to ensuring pupils have memorable experiences that engage them in their learning, make them proud of their results and get them wanting to learn more.
  • Pupils have a ‘buzz’ when they go into their lessons and when they leave. They enjoy their lessons and are enthusiastic when solving problems. 
  • The headteacher has appointed high quality teachers who know their subject and are passionate in terms of making a difference for all pupils.
  • Strong partnerships and working relationships are in place which enable a wide range of learning opportunities both within school and externally. These include competitions and clubs, involving other schools, universities and the Ogden Trust.
  • Science is a strong feature of the school curriculum supporting the improved popularity of the school.  Pupil numbers have increased by over 140 in four years. 
  • Pupils make expected progress and a high percentage achieve more than expected progress.
  • Because pupils love science and understand their learning their aspirations have been raised.
  • Birchensale is a hub school for a partnership teaching and learning group for science. This has been established across a group of schools and led to at least eight events being held supported by the Ogden Trust.

Rationale / Start Point

Pupils across the school make good / excellent progress in science from KS2 through to exit at the end of KS3. Various & differentiated means of assessment help us to analyze pupil progress: Our data tells us that (2016/2017) 84% of all our pupils make at least expected progress in science from entry to exit with 66% achieving more than expected progress. With 73% of KS2, pupils make at least expected progress, and 41% make more than expected progress, compared with KS3 where 82% of pupils make at least expected progress and 64% more than expected progress in.


Key Strategies

  •  An exciting curriculum with activities that engage pupils in learning.
  • Pupils are involved in showcasing and assessing their own learning for example through independent project work.
  • Employment of quality staff who embrace 'the Birchensale way'.
  • Positive working relationships with partners that enhance learning opportunities for pupils and staff.
  • Clear tracking of pupils that enables interventions to take place if individuals aren't making progress.
  • Public celebrations of learning including applying for awards which demonstrate effective practice.
  • Planned transition work to prepare pupils coming in to Birchensale and those leaving to go to high school which ensure a seamless learning pathway.
  • Teaching and learning at the heart of everything they do.
  • Teachers, pupils and parents work together in practical ways to understand science.

Sustainability and Further Development

  •  The Redditch and Bromsgrove Teaching and Learning Partnership for science is to be be widened to include more schools.  This will enable sustainability of activities once the agreement with the Ogden Trust ceases.
  • Birchensale is moving to an academy MAT to ensure a seamless transition across the schools for curriculum provision, teaching and learning and pupil progress.
  • The science department are developing the outside area to provide further opportunities for biological investigations and experiences.

Lead Establishment

Birchensale Middle School
Bridley Moor Road
B97 6HT
United Kingdom
0152 768 430
Headteacher / Manager
Mr Tim Jones
Phase of Education
Primary, Secondary
Type and Status of Provider
Local Authority

Published: 16 July 2018
Expires: 16 July 2021

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