Science / Year 5 / Science as a human endeavour / Nature and development of science

Curriculum content descriptions

examine why advances in science are often the result of collaboration or build on the work of others (AC9S5H01)

  • researching how the recent discovery of a biofluorescent flying squirrel led to discoveries of more fluorescent mammals, such as wombats, bilbies, echidna and bandicoots as scientists collaborated with other scientists across fields of science and internationally
  • researching why European naturalists and scientists first thought the platypus was a faked animal, and how scientists such as those in the Platypus Conservation Initiative are collaborating in ongoing research to understand the features and behaviours of platypuses
  • investigating how contemporary soil erosion management practices adapt and build on First Nations Australians’ fire management and agricultural practices
  • exploring why developing new erosion mitigation techniques such as contour banks and strip cropping requires geologists, hydrologists and farmers to collaborate
  • exploring how understanding of light and optics has developed by comparing the ideas of Plato, Euclid, Ptolemy, Ibn al-Haytham and Roger Bacon
General capabilities
  • Critical and creative thinking Critical and Creative Thinking
  • Literacy Literacy
ScOT terms

Interdisciplinary research,  Cooperation,  Scientific inquiry


Osprey ranking threats

In this lesson, students acquire data related to key threats to the survival of osprey. Students work in small groups to rank a list of key threats and collate the data in a class spreadsheet. They sort the data to identify the overall class ranking of threats. Students create a pie chart of the threats commonly ranked ...


Flight of the osprey infographic

In this lesson, students use data acquired during their learning about the osprey and information sourced online to design and create an infographic. This lesson is the final lesson in a series of six lessons that connect the cross-curriculum priority of Sustainability, Statistics and the Science learning area: Science ...


Osprey bird dimensions

In this lesson, students investigate measurement data related to the osprey. Students represent and interpret data related to wingspan and body length. They investigate patterns in data to describe any relationships. This lesson is the third in a series of six lessons that connect the cross-curriculum priority of Sustainability, ...


Osprey altitude data

In this lesson, students acquire data related to the altitudes reached by fledgling osprey practising flight. This lesson is the first in a series of six lessons that connect the cross-curriculum priority of Sustainability, Statistics and the Science learning area: Science as a human endeavour. This lesson was developed ...


Osprey position and location

In this lesson, students acquire data related to the migration of the osprey. Students describe location and position on a Cartesian plane using paired coordinates. They explore the way latitude and longitude is used to pinpoint a location on Earth. This lesson is the fourth in a series of six lessons that connect the cross-curriculum ...


Osprey migration data

In this lesson, students acquire data related to the migration of the osprey. Students represent and interpret the data, discussing and reporting on the data distribution. They compare two types of charts to decide which type is best to display the dataset. This lesson is the second in a series of six lessons that connect ...


FLEET Schools: Light: reflection, refraction, diffraction

This collection of learning activities explores the basic physics that describes light, the history of exploration of light and its applications, and implications for society. There are links to critical thinking activities and experiments that cover the concepts of absorption, reflection, refraction and diffraction to ...


Primary Connections: Communicating matters

In this sequence of 8 lessons, students learn about solids, liquids and gases, determine their properties and consider how their particulate arrangement relates to their properties and behaviour. They study a variety of examples of science communication and develop techniques to communicate what they have learned. Professional ...


Wild ride: get a grip

Investigate the role of friction in performance of bicycle tyres. Test how the type of tread affects grip and speed. Choose tyres best suited to track and weather conditions in a time trial. Please note that the 'About Grip' button is intentionally hidden and will only appear based on the user's choices. This learning object ...


Walking on Crushed Glass

This is an illustrated story of a real-life engineering solution designed to recycle glass waste and reuse it as reinforcement for concrete used in footpaths. The book explains the process of innovation to reach a viable solution. It shows the creativity, innovation and collaboration required to provide a solution that ...


Catalyst: What is a megafire?

Join Catalyst reporter Anja Taylor as she visits the Jemez Mountains in New Mexico and discovers the impacts of recent megafires on the landscape there. What is a megafire? And how is a megafire different from a regular wildfire? How have recent fires permanently transformed the landscapes that Anja and Professor Craig ...


Working towards a renewable energy future

Listen to electrical engineering student Kulsoom Hussain describe her dream career. What are some of the challenges she says she'll face in trying to achieve her goals? What can you find out about the energy sources used in Australia? How much renewable energy is used to power our country?


Catalyst: Penguin wave better than a group hug!

Emperor penguins form a big, tightly packed huddle to keep warm in Antarctica, the coldest and windiest continent on Earth. But how do the ones on the outside of the huddle keep warm? Find out about a clever way of ensuring that no penguin is left out in the cold.


Elliot and the Surfing Scientist: Pepper scatter experiment

Watch what happens in this pepper scatter experiment by Surfing Scientist, Ruben Meerman. Ruben demonstrates an important property of water, surface tension, by dipping a toothpick into water sprinkled with pepper. Find out what happens when detergent is added.


Elliot and the Surfing Scientist: Get Blown Away With This Air Experiment

Substances exist in different states depending on the temperature. Watch the Surfing Scientist have a popping good time as he demonstrates this phenomenon. Don't forget to block your ears!


Elliot and the Surfing Scientist: Using a lens to bend light

How can a water-filled plastic straw be used to decode a secret message? Watch as the Surfing Scientist demonstrates how lenses with a curved surface do curious things to light.


BTN: Living on the International Space Station

What would it be like to live on a space station? In this clip you'll see footage of astronauts on the International Space Station and discover what their daily life is like. You'll also find out about how the space station was built and about some important research being done there.


Catalyst: Sending seeds into space

Why might we need to keep a collection of seeds from all over the world? Where would we keep a collection like that? Should we send some of them into space? Watch this clip to reveal answers to all these questions and more.


ABC News: Dr Karl discusses mining asteroids

Imagine an asteroid, half the size of a football field, hurtling towards Earth at a speed of 28,000 kilometres per hour! Watch this clip to find out about Asteroid 2012 DA14 and whether it poses any threat to Earth. You will also discover why mining prospectors are keen to capture asteroids such as this one. Could the next ...


Science under the microscope

A student-focused mobile web application that tests students? knowledge of the NSW Science curriculum. It will reuse videos and other components of 2010 Murder under the Microscope (Shockwave on the Shoreline) to provide a series of clues that unfold as the student answers science questions correctly. After receiving all ...