Medium-term plan: How can we ensure our oceans stay amazing?

Y5 Planning overview grid – Oceans

Bring the underwater worlds of our planet’s oceans to life in your classroom with this enquiry of learning.

The learning enquiry on oceans set out in this medium-term planning works particularly well when it is taught immediately after the Year 5 learning enquiryWhat journey does a river take?’. Just as the learning reaches the estuary, it moves into the oceans in the next half term!

Linked to the principle of Interdependence, this medium-term planning draws together knowledge and skills from across the National Curriculum for KS2, giving students the opportunity to explore the wonder of our underwater ocean worlds in a variety of subjects. Over the course of six weeks, the learning focuses on the living things that make up ocean ecosystems, the ways in which human activity is threatening the health of these systems and – in the final week – what can be done to protect them.

Each of the Geometry activities in this medium-term planning acts as a stimulus for a week’s learning, allowing children to explore the shapes, patterns and symmetry of ocean creatures, from bivalves to fish and turtles. The Science content links to National Curriculum objectives for KS2 around the classification of living things and moves on to focus on how solids – in this case, salt – can dissolve in water and how they can be separated again.

In English, the Michael Morpurgo novel Kensuke’s Kingdom provides the stimulus for ocean adventure stories and later in the half term there is a focus on speaking skills, as the children script and deliver their own TED Talks on plastic pollution. Meanwhile, in Geography there is an opportunity to explore the coastlines of the UK before moving on to look at the world’s oceans and at the environmental pros and cons of different methods of fishing.

These TED Talks are the Great Work element of this learning enquiry, as the culmination of the learning set out in this medium-term planning.

This enquiry links to Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14 Life Below Water.

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