Our vision for our Science curriculum
We aim to:
build a strong knowledge and understanding of scientific phenomena.
enable our students to apply knowledge to a range of situations.
develop our students’ ability to communicate their understanding of science effectively
develop our students’ practical science skills
enable our students to havethe choice of studying science beyond GCSE
build our students’ cultural capital to be able to fully participate in society from a position of knowledge.
IMPLEMENTING this requires us to be skilled in passionately presenting engaging content, relevant to the real world, and is equitable for all students regardless of their starting points or background. That staff have the appropriate subject knowledge to deliver the curriculum and participate in CPD activities that strengthen both pedagogical knowledge and subject knowledge. The department have the appropriate resources and equipment to deliver the science curriculum in an engaging way that uses self-monitoring and reflection to ensure we deliver the identified content in a continually improving way.
In Biology, students learn about the key features of cells, including how we observe cells and the functions of cell organelles. They then learn about the basic functions of organisms, including digestion and breathing, before learning about the interactions between organisms in communities.
In Chemistry, students learn how particle theory helps use understand mixtures and separation, how particles are composed of atoms, elements and molecules, and how simple compounds, such as acids and alkalis, change during reactions.
In Physics, students learn about how energy is stored and energy is transferred, particularly by electricity, mechanical forces, and sound.
In Biology, students extend their understanding of cell biology by considering the discovery, structure and hereditary function of DNA. Organisms are studied to learn about reproduction in both plants and animals, and the effects of humans on the environment, including variation, evolution and extinction.
In Chemistry, students deepen their understanding of the energy changes that occur in chemical and physical reactions, and learn about the natural and artificial reactions occurring on earth and in the atmosphere, including energy changes. Students are also introduced to the Periodic Table.
In Physics, energy transfers by radiation and as light are studied, as well as the place of the Earth within the Solar System.
In Biology, students learn how advances in Science over time have lead to improvements in our knowledge, and how these improvements help us look after ourselves and our world better, inclding preparing for an uncertain future.
In Chemistry, students learn about in depth about the rearrangements of atoms in chemical reactions and the rules governing chemical reactivity.
In Physics, the impacts of mechanical, electrical and magnetic forces are studied.
KS4 curriculum follows the GCSE National curriculum as set forth by the exam board the students are entered for. It covers the full breadth of scientific concepts. Most students are entered for Combined Science. A small proportion of students are entered for the Entry Level certificate alongside the GCSE to ensure they achieve a science qualification that still covers the National Curriculum. Other students opt to take the Separate Science course and cover a greater breadth of key scientific concepts, and some concepts in more detail.
Students will study the following units from the start of the Spring term:
Key Concepts in Biology
Cells and Control
States of matter/separating mixtures and purifying substances
Key concepts in Chemistry (not including calculations involving masses)
Forces and motion.
This allows us to spend more time developing the key concepts in Biology and Chemistry that underpin much of the later ideas in these subjects. It allows the development of mathematical skills in Physics.
Students will complete all of the remaining content for Paper 1. Some groups may progress further than this.
Students complete the Paper 2 content.
The IMPACT of our curriculum is measured through formal assessment, through discussion with students and through our professional judgement of the students themselves.
Assessment is standard for all students so comparisons can be made. Each unit is assessed through formal testing and teacher assessments of practical skills determined. All students sit a standard end of year test to assess individual progress against the curriculum. Assessment is continuous in lessons using strategies such as retrieval practice, questioning and student self and peer assessment. Homework at KS3 uses google forms quizzes for low stakes testing and videos on a topic set through Edpuzzle with questions embedded to enhance the learning in the classroom, along with written tasks. Homework at KS4 is based on exam question practice for previous topics to bring in retrieval practice and spaced learning, along with low stakes testing using google form quizzes.
Science Curriculum Overview 2018-2019
KS4 Science Curriculum 2018-2019