Science Capital at Hartwell Primary School

‘Science capital’ can be defined as a concept “…that refers to all the science-related resources, experiences and ideas that a child may have.” (Explorify, 2021). At Hartwell Primary School, we believe in this and look at ‘Science Capital’ as referring to one’s own knowledge of what science is and how it works, as well as its implementation in the wider society. At our school we are looking to introduce this by creating opportunities for our pupils and staff to learn and appreciate more how science is applied and celebrated around them. In turn, this should enhance pupils’ engagement with science and begin to not only recognise, but feel that it is useful and an important part of our lives.

How are we promoting Science Capital within our lessons?

  • When learning units of work, pupils begin lessons with a ‘big question’ which they are able to answer at the end of a lesson as a result of their investigations.
  • Units of work provide investigation opportunities which are linked to real-life scenarios.
  • Pupils learn within their topics about job roles which are associated with this unit of work.
  • Pupils learn about scientists and some of their work when studying a topic, and can be linked to an investigation that children are involved in.
  • Promoting the ‘Hartwell Scientist’ vision to establish recognition within pupils that they are
  • Lessons are encouraged to be cross-curricular (where appropriate) and using knowledge and skills across subjects.

How are we promoting Science Capital outside of our lessons?

  • Visitors are invited in to discuss their role in the science industry. This may take the form of assembly talks or supporting a teacher in a lesson.
  • We are introducing wider opportunities for science outside of the classroom, where pupils are selected to complete tasks that focus on using science to make a difference to the school and wider community:
    • Science Council in Year 1 & 2
    • STEM Ambassadors in Year 3 & 4
    • Science Supporters in Year 5 & 6
  • Pupils can complete out-of-school projects that promote opportunities to connect with science culture outside of school to enhance their attitudes towards science in the wider world.

Photos of Science Capital at Hartwell Primary School


Class R had a visitor from a real farmer to learn more about farming and how tractors work.

Through ‘Collective Worship’ opportunities, we have learnt how to be more environmentally friendly and caring.

For example, thanks to volunteers from Hartwell Church we learnt that we can recycle tins and newspapers that we buy to make plant pots.

We have cross-curricular opportunities, such as in Class R learning in PSHE the importance of sleep and its impact on our health.

Class R have been planting more plants to attract more bees.

Pupils across our school access our library to help find out more information to support learning.