Gearing up: new project for the new year

3 December 2019

To complement this year’s Phizzi Forces CPD programme, the Ogden Trust primary team has collaborated with JCB on their Junior Innovator project – an engaging cross-curricular project to develop stronger links between physics and design technology in the primary curriculum.

The JCB Junior Innovator project is the brainchild of Stuart Harper, Engineering Excellence Manager at JCB, and will provide construction kits for a JCB-inspired machine.

“The UK currently faces an annual deficit of approximately 60,000 engineers from higher education streams and the DfE states that quality STEM teaching must start at primary schools. The JCB Junior Innovators programme seamlessly integrates our iconic brand with the curriculum needs of KS2; providing a national teaching resource to teachers, including CPD provision. We were delighted to work with The Ogden Trust to help realise the full potential of the programme.”

The Ogden Trust has supported the JCB Junior Innovator project by developing three primary physics enquiries that can be carried out once children have constructed the Junior Innovator machine. These enquiries have been designed to provide children with creative ways to deepen and apply their knowledge of simple machines, a key component of the Year 5 forces topic.

“Thanks to our collaboration, five JCB innovator kits will be arriving at every Ogden Trust primary partnership school in the new year,” says Wendy Cox, Head of School Partnerships. “This is a fantastic resource for teachers from all of our partnership schools to provide opportunities for their pupils to apply their learning about forces to real-life contexts.”

The ‘Lift the load’ enquiry is designed to enable young learners to develop their skills in planning and carrying out a fair test by investigating levers with the aim for finding out the best arrangement of a robotic arm for lift a heavy load. In carrying out this enquiry, children will be able to practise measuring forces with a newton meter and go on to use their data to identify trends that will help them answer a scientific question.

The ‘Gears are great!’ enquiry provides an opportunity for children to carry out a pattern seeking enquiry that deepens their understanding of how gears work. Children are challenged to explore patterns between the number of teeth on connected gears and how they move with the aim of being able to use their findings to make predictions about what might happen in a different situation.

As an extension, the third enquiry ‘Helpful hydraulics and nifty pneumatics’ is also a pattern seeking enquiry where children investigate how the size of syringes in hydraulic and pneumatic systems alter the effect of forces as they are transferred from one place to another. Children will develop their learning in design technology by applying their understanding of forces to a new context.

JCB is hosting an Ogden Primary Physics Professional Learning (P3L) day.
Thursday 27 February, Rocester, Staffs. Book now.
This primary physics CPD programme from The Ogden Trust is designed to cover the key concepts of the physics primary curriculum but provides clear cross-curricular links to other areas too.
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