The JH Intergrated Sciences Programme aims to develop all NJCians to be critical thinkers with a growth mindset who use their understanding of the Nature of Science, scientific knowledge and scientific thinking to understand the world we live in, so as to better the community.
The NJC Junior High Science Student is a critical thinker and self-regulated learner who is able to:
- think and question critically to achieve depth and breadth of understanding
- use scientific thinking to design creative solutions in serving the community.
- be scientifically literate with an appreciation of the Nature of Science.
- work collaboratively and communicate effectively.
- set personalized learning goals, monitor learning progress, identify gaps in knowledge and skills and take action to cover the gaps.
The Junior High Science department philosophy is to develop students as Self-regulated learners and Critical thinkers, who appreciate the Interconnectedness between Science and the world through Experiential learning on the Nature of Science, who contribute to the society as Concerned citizens and Enthusiastic lifelong learners.
- Interconnectedness: Students are able to see the interconnectedness and relevance among Sciences and between Science and the world.
- Experiential learning: Students are able to develop appreciation and see relevance of Science in authentic contexts by learning through reflection on doing.
- NoS: Students are able to appreciate the nature of science in their learning, including the use of the scientific method.
- Concerned citizens: Students are able to use Science to meaningfully solve problems in society, serving as active contributors to the society.
- Enthusiastic: Students are able to develop into lifelong learners with the joy of learning.
VanTaseel-Baska’s Integrated Curriculum Model is employed in the design of our Year 1 to Year 4 JH Science curriculum.
- Content Advancement: Content is advanced in terms of breadth and depth, going beyond Cambridge’s GCE O Level syllabus and in alignment with the A level H2 Sciences syllabus.
- Authentic Process and Product Work: In line with CPDD Sciences curriculum framework on practices of science, students are exposed to the practices of science in their learning process. Learning experiences are designed for students to apply scientific inquiry skills for knowledge construction and discovery in authentic learning scenarios. Authentic transfer tasks are employed for students to collaborate and apply their scientific knowledge and skills in authentic scenarios, culminating in the JH4 Combined Performance STEAM Task: Science for Society – where students design and construct prototypes to benefit a chosen community.
- Intra and interdisciplinary concept development: Big Ideas under the UbD Design Framework are employed for stronger intra and interdisciplinary concept development both within the Sciences and with Language Arts and the Humanities.
Nature of Science
The JH Science curriculum is anchored in the practices of science, which includes the Nature of Scientific Knowledge (NOS) and Scientific Inquiry Skills.
The nature of science is a way of thinking and a method of investigating the world around us in a systematic manner. Science enables us to uncover ever more about the world we live in and leads us to an expanded appreciation of our universe. It extends the intrinsic curiosity with which we are born. It allows us connect the past with the present. The process of science is investigative, dynamic, and often controversial. It changes over time as it is influenced by cultural, social, and historical contexts as well as by the personalities of scientists themselves. The observations made, the range of questions posed, and the design of experiments depend on the creativity of the individual scientist.
Scientific Inquiry Skills
Scientific inquiry skills are skill sets required in the practice of science, and includes (1) initiating and planning experiments (INP), (2) Performing experiments and recording data (PRD), (3) Analysing and Interpreting Data (AID), and (4) Communication and working in teams (CWT). These skills are developed through deliberate lesson design in case studies, practicals and authentic transfer tasks.
The JH Science curriculum aims to develop students into self-regulated learners: able to set goals, monitor learning and reflect on their learning. To this end, a flipped classroom is employed in our lessons. Short concept videos on simple pre-requisite knowledge are crafted and used for pre-lesson preparation, with entry speedtests employed in class before concept development takes place during curriculum time. Peer and self-evaluations, project checkpoints and checklists, co-creation of rubrics and reflections are key tools employed in the JH Science classroom to develop students into self-regulated learners.
Critical and Creative Thinking
The JH Science curriculum aims to develop students who are able to apply the Intellectual standards on elements of reasoning. The use of authentic case studies, inquiry based learning, authentic transfer tasks which culminate in their final Combined Performance task serves as opportunities for students to apply critical and creative thinking in authentic scenarios, and to apply their scientific knowledge and skills to better the society.
JH Science employs a variety of formative assessment tools for a holistic assessment of our students’ learning progress, for our students to improve upon their conceptual understanding and scientific skills.
- Authentic Transfer Tasks (ATT) are used to provide a real-world authentic problem solving scenario for students to collaboratively apply their scientific knowledge and skills, with a focus on scientific communication.
- Practical assessments are used as formative assessments on the scientific inquiry skills of initiating and planning experiments (INP), performing experiments and recording data (PRD), and analysing and interpreting data (AID).
- Use of integrated questions, data-based questions and case studies
- AfL: Use of entry speedtests, exit cards and revision exercises for formative assessment.
- AaL: Use of self and peer evaluation, reflections, and provision of checkpoints in lesson and ATTs.