The young child first encounters Science in the Kindergarten, not in a conscious sense but through being at one with the rhythms of the seasons and the unfolding of nature around him or her.
As the children move through the classes, their first contact with formal science is the Man and Animal Main Lesson in Class 4, followed by the Plant Study Main Lessons in Class 5. Here the approach is qualitative, working with the child’s innate sense of wonder and concentrating on observing and describing phenomena from nature around them.
From Class 6 to Class 8 the science curriculum broadens to encompass astronomy, physics (magnetism, electrostatics, light, sound and forces), chemistry (combustion, salts, acids and bases, sugars, starch, cellulose and proteins) and human biology (health, nutrition and anatomy). The pupils’ sense of wonder and mystery is still alive and observation of phenomena continues to play an essential part in science lessons. However, the approach gradually becomes more quantitative, requiring careful measurement and systematic recording.
In the Upper School science is taught through demonstration and experiment. A historical, moral and human connection is maintained through the study of the biographies of scientists. Accurate observation, precise measurement, rigorous recording and full, clear descriptions are required of the pupils. Where appropriate mathematical laws are derived from experimental results. The curriculum in Classes 9 and 10 covers geomorphology, climatology, oceanography, organic chemistry, physics, anatomy and embryology.