ED1SP1-Teaching Practical Sessions in Science and Physical Education

Module Provider: Institute of Education
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring / Summer term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2021/2

Module Convenor: Mrs Gwenda Lappin
Email: g.m.lappin@reading.ac.uk

Type of module:

Summary module description:
This module is designed to introduce trainees to the pedagogy and practice of teaching of science and Physical Education in a primary school. A central theme in this module is the value of understanding how children think, learn and move when designing and running successful practical sessions. The module will explain the importance of enquiry, experiential learning and collaboration in the teaching of science and Physical Education.


The aims of the module are as follows:

  1. To provide an understanding of the values, aims and purposes of science education and Physical Education in Primary School.

  2. To provide sound teaching for the development of trainees’ pedagogical knowledge and practical classroom work with children in Science and Physical Education, particularly to ensure trainees’ understanding of and competence in planning sessions that involve a practical element

  3. To provide experiences for trainees to recognise and practice skilled teaching and assessment methods in Science and Physical Education

  4. To provide experiences to show the importance of providing pupils with a wide range of practical opportunities to promote exploratory and investigative skills, to promote language development, discussion and questioning skills, to encourage reflection and critical thinking and to encourage positive attitudes and co-operative skills.

  5. To ensure trainees develop their subject knowledge relating to the nature of science and its investigations, as well as aspects of safety and communication in life processes, materials and structures, and physical processes.

  6. To ensure trainees develop their subject knowledge relating to the teaching of Physical Education

  7. To provide students with opportunities to develop professional and interpersonal skills to prepare them for working collaboratively in a school setting.

Assessable learning outcomes:

On successful completion of the module, trainees will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate a sound understanding of the role and importance of scientific enquiry in science education.

  2. Provide evidence that they can plan effective practice, taking into account theories about how children learn

  3. Demonstrate that they can recognise opportunities for meaningful cross-curricular links

  4. Demonstrate commitment to formative assessment of their progress

Additional outcomes:

Successful candidates will:

  1. Be able to work independently and collaboratively to assimilate and communicate knowledge and ideas relating to the objectives of the module;

  2. Reflect critically on their own learning, experiences and contributions relating to the module;

  3. Undertake focused research and achieve greater critical awareness through the use of literature, e learning and observations of practice.

Outline content:

  • The nature of science and the nature of school science

  • Short term planning;

  • The importance of experience to foster conceptual change and the progression of skills;

  • How to organise and teach practical science sessions which are inclusive, safe and engaging;

  • How to tailor an activity to develop selected enquiry skills such as questioning, planning, observing, collaborating, reviewing;

  • Subject knowledge in selected areas of science, taken from life processes, materials and structures, and physical processes.

  • Understanding the physical literacy journey: how motivation, confidence, physical competence, knowledge and understanding can be developed to maintain physical activity throughout life.

  • Subject knowledge of fundamental movement skills using different parts of the body, through locomotor, stability and manipulative actions e.g. balancing, running, rolling, jum ping, throwing, catching and kicking

  • Learning how to challenge children by observing and analysing movements before selecting appropriate progressions

Global context:
While learning about the nature of science students consider the ways that science has influenced our understanding of the Earth and life on Earth. They also explore ideas relating to the impact of humans on the planet.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
The module will be delivered via workshops, blended learning and independent study.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Practicals classes and workshops 24 28
Guided independent study: 72 76
Total hours by term 96 104
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:
An assignment linked to the key elements of Science and PE (2,500 words)

Formative assessment methods:
Feedback and guidance during in-class discussion
Peer and tutor assessment of posters and other created work
Review of subject knowledge files and responses to tasks set by the tutor

Penalties for late submission:

The Support Centres will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.
The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf
You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

Assessment requirements for a pass:
40% for the assignment

Reassessment arrangements:
Resubmission of the assignment during the summer resit period

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

1) Required text books: The following books are recommended reading and drawn on in weekly science sessions, with regular preparatory reading tasks set from them. It is not essential to buy them, as copies are available in the library, but many students choose to buy them, both to cut down on repeated trips to the library and as they form a useful resource for supporting teaching of science on placements throughout the course: Sharp, J., Peacock, G., Johnsey, R., Simon, S., Smith, R., Cross, A.&Harris, D. (2014) Primary Science: Teaching Theory and Practice (7th ed.). London,England: SAGE Learning Matters. (RRP: £15.64) Peacock, G., Sharp, J. Johnsey, R.&Wright, D.(2014) Primary Science: Knowledge and Understanding, (7th ed), London, England: SAGE Learning Matters (RRP £16.09)

2) Specialist equipment or materials: 

3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear: For PE sessions, appropriate clothing is required, such as jogging trousers and a tee-shirt appropriate for a professional teaching PE in school. Appropriate trainers for support will also be required for safety in university sessions, rather than fashion trainers. Students make a variety of choices about the amount they chose to spend, but appropriate clothing is available cheaply from supermarkets and discount retailers.

4) Printing and binding: 

5) Computers and devices with a particular specification: No specialist computer equipment is needed beyond what the students would use for word-processing any assignments across the course.

6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence: 

Last updated: 6 June 2022


Things to do now