Autumn Term

Rocks and Soils

In this unit children will recognise that below the surface of Earth is rock which they may not be able to see. They will understand that over time rocks have been broken down to form smaller rocks, pebbles, stones and eventually soils. They will recognise that there are different rocks and different soils which have different properties and appearances. Children will identify, name and describe different rocks. They will compare and group different rocks and soils based on appearance and properties, e.g. hardness, and they will examine the soil in their local area. They will consider the impact of worms in making soils. Children will also describe in simple terms how fossils are formed when living things have been trapped in rock. They will have the opportunity to make a model fossil and look at the work of early palaeontologists, such as Mary Anning.

Working Scientifically, children will have the opportunity to make close observations and detailed comparisons of rocks and soils and they will investigate the appearance and some properties of rocks and soils. They will have the opportunity to set up simple comparative and fair tests. They will investigate how soils are formed, how animals make their habitat in soils, and the constituents of soil. This unit also offers the opportunity for children to consider risks and hazards involved in handling soils.

The Stone Age

In this unit, the children will explore how life changed for people during different periods of the Stone Age, including the Early, Middle and New Stone Ages. They will cover why the period was called the Stone Age, and what archaeological evidence there is from the period, particularly in the form of artefacts and monuments.

The main focus will be on the New Stone Age and how that contrasts with the earlier periods. The children will look in detail at the Neolithic settlement at Skara Brae and the conclusions we can reach from the evidence found at the site. Links will be made to the types of evidence introduced at Key Stage 1, and knowledge and skills will be further developed. The unit will also feed forward to Year 3 Unit 2: The Bronze Age and the Iron Age. Where possible, links should be made to the period in our locality.

The Big Finish, in which the children act/mime an area of Stone Age progress, provides opportunities for links to drama and role play.

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