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Progression Of A Theme - The Teaching Of Geology And Astronomy In The National Curriculum.

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Introduction

Science Assignment 1Aa Progression Of A Theme - The Teaching Of Geology And Astronomy In The National Curriculum I have chosen to include these two topics together as one theme since they are both closely related and the study of them both can often be intertwined at higher levels. In keystages 1 and 2 very little (if any) geology or astronomy is included in the national curriculum. Within keystage 1, pupils are required to recognise and name common types of material and recognise that some of them are found naturally (Sc3 1c). This is very basic and no scientific terms are used. Keystage 2 progresses further requiring pupils to be able to group and describe different rocks and soils on the basis of their characteristics such as texture, appearance etc. (Sc3 1d). This builds on what was previously learnt at keystage 1 by describing and grouping the materials previously identified. They are also required to know that the Sun, Earth and moon are approximately spherical (Sc4 4a). ...read more.

Middle

and how the sequence of, and evidence for, rock formation and deformation is obtained from the rock record (2r). Within Sc4 3m earthquake waves are discussed and how they can be used for evidence of layering in the structure of the Earth. Sc4 3n discusses the Earth's crust and upper mantle being composed of lithospheric plates and that tectonic plates result in the formation, deformation and recycling or rocks. Sc4 6f mentions the use of radioactivity including the radioactive dating of rocks. Sc4 4a-f deal with astronomical bodies found throughout the universe, how gravity acts throughout the universe, the evolution of stars over a long time scale, ideas about how the universe originated and evolved and also about the search for evidence of life elsewhere in the universe. In keystage 4 the emphasis is very much on looking at "the big picture". Pupils move from looking at the Sun, Earth and moon in Keystage 2, to looking at the solar system as a whole in keystage 3 to finally looking at the universe at keystage 4. ...read more.

Conclusion

The theme I have followed appears to be laid out within the N.C. to follow this model of cognitive development. However, recent research has challenged Piaget's theory of homogeneous performance within a given stage. Rather, it is argued that performance varies greatly within each stage and depends more on the acquisition and development of language, perception, decision rules, and real-world knowledge for any individual child. Some children may never even reach the later stages and many will progress through the different stages at different times (U and A Cog Sci dictionary website 2). It would seem then, foolish to totally base a child's learning on these theories, which may not be correct. If some children never reach the later stages of cognitive development then they will always struggle with their understanding of topics that require a higher level of thinking. At the same time children who may develop quicker and pass through these cognitive stages early on may find themselves being held back and suffering as a result. Word Count = 880 words. ...read more.

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