There has been a call for effective professional learning to improve the quality of the science teaching of primary teachers in australia. It seems from the literature that teaching science effectively is a challenging endeavour for primary teachers. Professional learning based on the instructional core framework is an emerging approach that has been utilised sparingly in teacher professional learning in australia. This paper reports on a case study that investigated the outcomes of one instance of a professional learning programme for primary science teachers based on the instructional core. Using a case study methodology, the current study collected data from multiple sources, including video-taped lesson observations, teacher interviews, field notes and transcripts of the teacher learning sessions. The study shows a number of positive outcomes with reference to the three areas of the instructional core framework: content, pedagogy and student skill outcomes. The findings of the paper are especially relevant to teacher educators, coaches and mentors who are interested in professional learning approaches that achieve positive outcomes in student learning. 2016 Teacher development.