Primary Science in the City

Learning Community

Key issue: Assessment, scientific enquiry and progression

National Lead: Dr Sarah Earle, Focus4TAPS

Local Lead: Tina Whittaker

Audience: Primary Science Subject Leads, Teachers of science, Assessment Leads.


The Offer

A year of sustained, collaborative teacher development to embed effective practice in classrooms:

  • three days of face-to-face input from the National leaders in Primary Science Assessment Practice,
  • gap tasks to pilot in school
  • a model of reflective professional practice
  • Local assessment champions to support school to school engagement
  • An e platform for the community of teachers to collaborate on the key issue

Funding (eligibility & criteria apply)

Stoke on Trent schools can request

  • Enable two staff full attendance at all sessions,
  • Completion of pre and post teacher and pupil surveys
  • The use of anonymised pupil work samples shared for exemplification purposes
  • Engagement and contribution to a community forum.
  • Support colleagues with gap tasks, including staff meeting time.


Stoke on Trent schools wishing to participate in the learning community for improving primary science assessment should express interest through our make an offer request  form. Places will be allocated to those schools that can provide a clear statement of need, (eg the SDP line for science), and describe how this funding is expected to impact upon science in their school (eg attainment data, classroom practice, science capital, PSQM success). Some schools may wish to request additional coaching support of up to 2.5 days and will self identify the potential for greatest change to current practice. (SEF tools available to support this analysis)

The Programme

Day 1 will introduce the TAPS Focused Assessment approach to develop teaching and assessment of Working Scientifically.

– Develop understanding of the skills in the Working Scientifically cycle

– Consider the role of the teacher using the TAPS pyramid model, which aims to use formative assessment to inform valid and reliable summative judgements

– Explore how to select a focus for teaching, assessment and recording

Day 2 will explore how to develop active pupil involvement and responsive teaching, using TAPS to support progression in primary science.

– Explore a broad range of assessment techniques

– Consider the role of the pupil using the TAPS pyramid model

– Develop understanding of progression and types of enquiry in primary science

Day 3 will consider how to develop a whole school shared understanding of formative and summative assessment to support teaching and learning in primary science.

– Consider the formative and summative use of assessment information using the TAPS pyramid model

– Take part in moderation discussions for professional learning

– Explore how TAPS can support the development of a whole school shared understanding of progression in primary science


Cohort 1 Cohort 2
20th March 2019 9:15- 3:30pm St Gregory’s Longton 21st November 2019 9:15- 3:30pm
12th June 2019 9:15-3:30pm (venue TBC) 26th Feb  2020 9:15- 3:30pm
20th November 2019 9:15- 3:30 19th May 2020  9:15-3:30pm
20th January 2020 2-4pm Peer review & presentation of findings. 2nd July 2020 2-4pm Peer review & presentation of findings.