Citizen science lesson plan

Explore and understand the limitations of single observation based investigations and learn more about how citizen science can help. This lesson plan can inspire young budding scientists to contribute to the scientific community.

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  • Age groups: 7-11s
  • Subjects: Science
  • Topics: Biodiversity

Curriculum links

Completing the activities in this lesson plan will help students meet the following objectives / outcomes:


Science Lower KS2:

Working scientifically

Pupils should be taught to:

  • Ask relevant questions and using different types of scientific enquiries to answer them.
  • Set up simple practical enquiries, comparative and fair tests.
  • Make systematic and careful observations and, where appropriate, taking accurate measurements using standard units, using a range of equipment, including thermometers and data loggers. Suggest improvements and raise further questions.

Upper KS2:

Working scientifically

Pupils should be taught to:

  • Plan different types of scientific enquiries to answer questions, including recognising and controlling variables where necessary.



Through research and discussion I have an appreciation of the contribution that individuals are making to scientific discovery and invention and the impact this has made on society. SCN 2-20a

  • Ask questions or hypothesise Plan and design procedures and experiments
  • Select appropriate samples, equipment and other resources
  • Observe, collect, measure and record evidence, taking account of safety and controlling risk and hazards
  • Identify limitations and improvements


KS2 Science


Pupils turn ideas suggested to them, and their own ideas, into a form that can be investigated. They outline the planned approach/method recognising, deciding upon and giving some justification for each of the following when appropriate.


Pupils think about what they have done in order to consolidate learning and transfer skills, knowledge and understanding to other contexts.

Northern Ireland

KS2 The World Around Us – Thinking Skills and Personal Capabilities

Managing information

  • Ask questions identifying what they know and what they need to know.
  • Plan what to do or make.

Thinking, Problem Solving and Decision Making

  • Make observations using the senses.
  • Make simple predictions by suggesting ideas that can be investigated.
  • Recognise when carrying out a test, whether or not it is fair.
  • Explain their methods and give simple reasons for their choices, designs and solutions

Being Creative

  • Ask questions about the world around them.


  • Talk about what they have learned, how the work was carried out, what the purpose was, have they achieved it and what aspects could be improved.
  • Recognise potential risks and hazards to themselves and others when investigating.