Perhaps you might get more responses in the Early Years or Primary fora, jules_reeve, if this one is seen by most to be for teachers of secondary science and higher. However, I am responding to your OP for two principal reasons. First, because as a secondary science teacher I have also trained primary teachers in science, I held a F/T post in a JMI school for science and A/V, and I have done quite a bit of supply work in infant and primary schools therefore I think I might have something to offer. Second, and more importantly for me, I might get some feedback from other teachers about what I say and I am using your OP to test the waters, so to speak, if you do not mind. At least it might provoke some more reponses for you, leaving you to decide! My own approach for Y7 students was to make science fully practical, child-centred and open-plan. As soon as possible, they had free access to all resources in the science laboratory, and the school grounds during their science lessons. They chose their own activities, gave presentations to the whole class, and sometimes we took them to Science Fairs where again they could display and demonstrate their work to a wider audience - parents and other schools. When I was doing my supply work in primary schools, I was pleased to see many teachers, especially infant teachers, doing this in their own classrooms or open-plan infant schools. Children as young as seven or eight were able to choose the correct pencil on their own, for instance, e.g. soft (B or 2B), medium (HB) or hard (H or 2H), and they had learnt this in their infant classroom. A simple example, but extended to everything in the classroom or open-area, including the computer, I hope you understand what I am saying. The basis for the work was "Science 5-13", and Professor Wynne Harlen, now retired, is still promoting these aims and objectives with the recent publication "Principles and Big Ideas of Science Education". This may sound all very theoretical, but once you have the control of your children you will find that their confidence in themselves, especially in their science activities, which they mostly choose for themselves, spills over to their other studies, e.g reading, writing and and mathematics. Well, that's what I think, and is also backed by my 40 years of experience with 5 to 13 science, building on the learning through play which is used in pre-school. One practical piece of advice, in my F/T post of responsibility in the JMI school (over 500 pupils) I was told by the HT that I was a very good organiser! Whether that was a compliment or not, it certainly got all the teachers doing practical science, and they enjoyed it!