Integrated Science - the Wreake Valley Project
Integrated Science, from the Wreake Vally Academy, is a series of three books designed to support science teaching of students aged 11-14. The books were published in 1976 well before the introduction of the National Curriculum for science.
In many ways it heralded the National Curriculum by providing a balanced science curriculum that included biology, chemistry, physics and encouraged scientific investigation as a way of promoting scientific thinking and engagement in science for the age range that was later described as Key Stage Three.
At the time of publishing the provision of science for students in primary schools was very varied and the publication was designed to be flexible to accommodate a wide range of experience and different levels of prior learning.
The books were:
• written by practicing teachers, in a comprehensive school
• tested with mixed ability groups
• written using very simple language and step-by-step instructions
• presented with 'Extension Work' for more able students.
The books built on the spirit of Nuffield in British science education and were intended to be used by schools in building their own science curriculum i.e. there was no imposed fixed structure for the course taught. Similarly the methodology of teaching is not prescribed and the materials could be used in a range of styles from didactic to heuristic.
The books also embraced the notion of a spiral curriculum as described by Professor Jerome Bruner: ”A curriculum as it develops should revisit the basic ideas repeatedly, building upon them until the student has grasped the full formal apparatus that goes with them”. Thus science ideas are encountered in increasing detail and demand in the books and building on previous work.
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Resource by: Edward Arnold