Intent of Curriculum
In the Science faculty our intent is for the curriculum to ensure that learners are equipped with the necessary scientific knowledge, skills and vocabulary and they develop a better understanding of the wider world. The curriculum will enable our learners to value the importance of scientific discoveries and research and promote curiosity of science. The curriculum will support learners to make connections between different sciences, consider the ethical aspects of a range of science topics and gain a well- rounded knowledge in order to consider different pathways.
Implementation of Curriculum
In the science faculty we deliver a detailed and varied scheme of learning. Scientific concepts are taught by linking them to the real world using ‘big ideas’, to make them more relevant for the pupils. There are strong links between KS3 and KS4 to develop understanding of knowledge and concepts. Learners are given opportunities to investigate using scientific methods. There are curricular and extra-curricular activities that enrich, engage and enthuse students, leading towards realising their potential. After school STEM clubs are offered to encourage project participation. Science career events are held to expose students to a broad range of experiences and to raise their aspirations to consider pursuing science at advanced level. The GCSE triple science pathway is offered to students based on their suitability and interest. Staff are regularly involved in continuous professional development activities to update their subject knowledge and pedagogy.
Impact of Curriculum
In the science faculty the curriculum will make a profound, positive impact to the outcomes of every child. To ascertain the impact of the curriculum we use several qualitative and quantitate measures, including: PINS review (through which we also provide detailed and purposeful feedback); End of topic tests to highlight and address misconceptions and measure progress; Mock exams; GCSE results; Next steps in exercise books; Peer review and self-review; Progress weeks and progress lessons and Required practical assessments. We also review the Triple science uptake.
Topics studied at KS3
We teach Key Stage 3 within two years rather than the more traditional three years. Students have nine lessons of science every two weeks and study a wide variety of units covering Biology, Chemistry and Physics.
Topics covered in Year 7
Elements and Compounds
Electricity and Magnetism
Topics studied in Year 8
Environment & Photosynthesis
What’s in rocks
Heating and cooling
Examination board: AQA
At KS4 students follow either the Combined Trilogy course leading to two qualifications or Separate Science course in Biology, Chemistry and Physics leading to three qualifications.
The Separate (triple) science course is ideal for students who may go on to further study in a variety of science subjects and students aiming for specialised science careers. This course leads to three separate GCSEs in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. It is a requirement that pupils obtain at least a Grade 4 at KS3 in order to be placed on this pathway.
Topics studied at KS4:
Separate science students study the same topics but to a greater depth than students following the Combined science course.
3.Infection and response
5. Homeostasis and response
6.Inheritance, variation and evolution
1. Atomic structure and the periodic table
2. Bonding, structure, and the properties of matter
3. Quantitative chemistry
4. Chemical changes
5. Energy changes.
6. The rate and extent of chemical change
7. Organic chemistry
8. Chemical analysis
9. Chemistry of the atmosphere
10. Using resources.
3. Particle model of matter
4. Atomic structure.
7. Magnetism and electromagnetism
8. Space(Separate Physics only)
AQA GCSE Science examinations:
All GCSE Science exams are linear and will take place in the summer of year 11.
Combined trilogy: There are 6 papers: Two Biology, two chemistry and two Physics. Each paper is 1 hour and 15 minutes, marked out of 70 and worth 16.7% of the overall GCSE. Questions are a mixture of multiple choice, structured, closed short answer, and open response.
Separate (Triple) Science: Separate science students will undertake 2 x 1hour 45 minute papers for each of the sciences (6 papers altogether).
Trips and visits:
The Science faculty provide an extensive range of extra-curricular provision, including
- STEM roadshows
- University visits
- STEM club
- Year 11 after-school intervention sessions
- Lunchtime KS3 intervention sessions
- Talks by STEM ambassadors
- Year 9 trip to the Big Bang fair – NEC Birmingham
- There are other trips which are offered to different year groups to inspire and enthuse students as well as to demonstrate scientific concepts.
Homework is set regularly to supplement learning in school.
Ask your child if they have any homework.
Encourage your child to complete homework on time.
Remind them to put adequate effort into their homework.
Here are some websites that may help with your child’s homework.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/science/ BBC GCSE bitesize has lots of useful revision and self testing pages for GCSE students
http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/ks3bitesize/science/ Ideal for Key Stage 3 revision and short tests.
http://www.darvill.clara.net/ Andy Darvill’s science site has useful revision resources to help your child understand different science topics.