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Science

Department Overview

We are a team of specialist teachers of Science, covering Physics, Biology and Chemistry.  We are an  experienced and innovative department committed to developing the teaching and learning of Science across both key stages.

Science Curriculum Leader: Mrs K Field

Curriculum

In Years 7 and 8 all students follow a bespoke course of study based around the requirements of the National Curriculum. 

Year 9 students are currently following the new AQA Science Specification which offers an exciting start to GCSE Science. The three Science subjects are taught in units such as Cell Biology, Atomic Structure and Energy. These units provide students with a foundation for their future learning of some of the more demanding GCSE content. This also enables us to assess students’ most appropriate route at GCSE.

In Year 10 and 11, students either follow AQA Combined Science, which leads to two GCSE grades 1-9 or AQA Separate Science which leads to 3 GCSEs in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Students have the option to choose which pathway they follow. This is an exciting time for GCSE Science students as some of the most interesting subjects at A Level have been brought down into the GCSE courses to give students wishing to study A level Science a real boost in the right direction. We do realise however, that some students won’t want to study Science beyond GCSE Level so we strive to make the new Science curriculum as relevant and as interesting to those students as possible.

All Key Stage 4 students are given Personalised Learning Checklists to support them in their revision. For those students in Year 11 there are PPEs, revision sessions and Walking, Talking Mocks throughout the year to support and motivate Year 11 to be the very best version of themselves.

We deliver the AQA GCSE Combined Science course (Qualification Accreditation Number: 601/8758/X).

Alternatively, students may choose to follow the Separate Science choice and study GCSE Chemistry (Qualification Accreditation Number: 601/8757/8), GCSE Biology (Qualification Accreditation Number: 601/8752/9) and GCSE Physics (Qualification Accreditation Number: 601/8751/7). 

Extra-Curricular Activities:

The department runs a regular STEM Club. There are also weekly drop-in sessions for revision and homework support and we offer a variety of enrichment opportunities for students such as trips to universities, Science Week and visiting speakers/activities.

 

Year 7 Science Curriculum Milestones

Key Knowledge

Pupils will know:

Key Skills

Pupils will be able to:

Key threshold concepts

  • There are many types of cell. Each has a different structure or feature so it can do a specific job
  • Each stage of the development of a new life has an important role to play.
  • Living organisms are interdependent and show adaptations to their environment.
  • Contact forces will change the speed, direction or shape of an object.
  • All objects exert a gravitational force. The size of the force depends on mass and distance
  • Energy cannot be created or destroyed it is only transferred.
  • Current is the flow of electrons and is needed to make components work
  • Everything is made of atoms. Each substance behaves in a different way due to the types of atoms it is made of.
  • The strength of an acid or alkali can be determined by its pH. Mixing acids and alkalis produces a chemical reaction.

 

Subject-specific knowledge

  • Cells
  • Reproduction
  • Interdependence
  • Contact force
  • Gravity
  • Energy
  • Electrical circuits
  • Substances and particles
  • Changing substances

 

Experimental skills and investigations

  • Develop scientific questions based on their curiosity of the world
  • Identify variables to help plan a valid investigation
  • Use basic scientific equipment safely
  • Draw tables and record observations from an investigation
  • Suggest improvements to theirs and others investigations

 

Analysis and evaluation

  • Identify simple patterns and trends from tables and graphs
  • Interpret observations from investigations Suggest a scientific idea that might explain observations
  • Identify evidence to support an idea

 

 

Measurement

  • Use SI units for force, weight, mass, temperature, energy, current, voltage and resistance
  • Use basic scientific equipment to take measurements during investigations
  • Use and derive simple equations for cell magnification, force, gravity and electrical circuits

 

Cross-curricular links

  • The development of new life within PSCHE
  • Using and deriving equations within Maths

 

Year 8 Science Curriculum Milestones

Key Knowledge

Pupils will know:

Key Skills

Pupils will be able to:

Key threshold concepts

  • Food has to be broken down so that we can absorb the nutrients we need to live.
  • Gas exchange systems are highly adapted to make them efficient at gas exchange.
  • All living things respire. It releases the energy for life.
  • Plants are the start of the food chain. It is photosynthesis that provides this source of nutrition.
  • The properties of materials are due to the elements it is made of. The periodic table can tell us a lot about these elements.
  • Current is the flow of electrons and is needed to make components work
  • Magnetism is a non-contact force which can be used to generate electricity
  • Energy cannot be created or destroyed it is only transferred.
  • Waves transport energy from place to place without transporting matter
  • Our solar system is a tiny part of a galaxy, one of many billions in the universe.

 

Subject-specific knowledge

  • Digestive system
  • Gas exchange
  • Respiration
  • Photosynthesis
  • Atomic model and the periodic table
  • Electricity and magnetism
  • Energy
  • Waves
  • Solar system

 

Experimental skills and investigations

  • Develop reasoned scientific questions based on their curiosity of the world
  • Identify variables to help plan a valid investigation
  • Use a range of scientific equipment safely
  • Draw tables and simple graphs to record observations from an investigation
  • Suggest improvements to theirs and others investigations

 

Analysis and evaluation

  • Identify patterns and trends from tables and graphs
  • Interpret observations from investigations and provide a simple conclusion
  • Suggest a scientific idea to explain observations
  • Identify evidence to support an idea

 

 

Measurement

  • Use SI units for time, weight, mass, temperature, energy, current, voltage, resistance and wave properties
  • Use scientific equipment to take measurements during investigations
  • Use and derive simple equations for rate of diffusion, gravity, electrical circuits and frequency of waves

 

Cross-curricular links

  • Importance of nutrition within Food technology and PSCHE
  • Using and deriving equations within Maths

Year 9 Science Curriculum Milestones

In Year 9 all students will study the AQA Combined Science GCSE. There will be an opportunity for students to opt in to AQA Single Sciences in Year 10.

Key Knowledge

Pupils will know:

Key Skills

Pupils will be able to:

Key threshold concepts

  • The interactions within and between cells are vital for all of life processes
  • All living things respire. It releases the energy for life.
  • Plants are the start of the food chain. It is photosynthesis that provides this source of nutrition.
  • Living things must be highly adapted to survive and flourish in their environment.
  • The interactions between atoms, and therefore properties of materials, can be explained through bonding.
  • Chemical reactions are used in industry to create new products
  • Much of the Earths’ resources are limited. The future of life will depend on how we use these resources and the impact of climate change.
  • There are a range of energy stores. As processes happen energy is transferred between stores.
  • Forces will change the speed, shape or direction of an object
  • Waves transport energy from place to place without transporting matter
  • Experimental evidence can be used to prove the properties of something too small to see

 

Subject-specific knowledge

  • Cells and movement of substances
  • Respiration
  • Photosynthesis
  • Ecology
  • Atoms and bonding
  • Chemical change
  • The atmosphere and Earths resources
  • Energy
  • Basic forces
  • Waves
  • Atoms and radiation

Experimental skills and investigations

  • Develop scientific questions based on their prior scientific knowledge
  • Identify a wide range of variables and plan a valid investigation
  • Use scientific equipment effectively
  • Draw tables and graphs to record observations from an investigation
  • Suggest improvements to theirs and others investigations

 

Analysis and evaluation

  • Describe and explain patterns and trends from tables and graphs
  • Interpret observations from investigations and form conclusions based on scientific understanding
  • Identify evidence to support an idea
  • Apply understanding to unfamiliar contexts

  

Measurement

  • Use SI units for energy, mass, weight, gravitational field strength, speed, distance, spring constant, power, time
  • Use a range of scientific equipment to take measurements during investigations
  • Use and derive equations for energy transfer, efficiency, forces, waves, cell magnification and light intensity

 

Cross-curricular links

  • Respiration within Physical Education
  • Using waves for communication within information technology
  • Human impact on the Earth within Geography and PSCHE

 

Year 10 Science Curriculum Milestones

In Year 10 all students will continue to study the AQA Combined Science GCSE. There will be an opportunity for students to opt in to AQA Single Sciences within the year.

Key Knowledge

Pupils will know:

Key Skills

Pupils will be able to:

Key threshold concepts

  • All living things respire. It releases the energy for life.
  • Plants are the start of the food chain. It is photosynthesis that provides this source of nutrition.
  • Genetic inheritance has a large influence in our characteristics. Genetic disorders can also occur and the answer to the cure may be in our genes
  • Organisms either survive and reproduce or die out. Over time a surviving population will evolve to become more suited to their environment.
  • Homeostasis involves the mechanisms needed to maintain balance within the body.
  • Industry uses quantitative chemistry to improve the efficiency of reactions.
  • Hydrocarbons are a vital resource. They are used for energy and making plastics.
  • Much of the Earths’ resources are limited. The future of life will depend on how we use these resources and the impact of climate change.
  • Forces will change the speed, shape or direction of an object
  • Waves transport energy from place to place without transporting matter

 

Subject-specific knowledge

  • Respiration
  • Photosynthesis
  • Genetic inheritance
  • Evolution
  • Homeostasis
  • Quantitative energy and rate of reaction
  • Organic chemistry
  • The atmosphere and Earths resources
  • Forces
  • Waves

Experimental skills and investigations

  • Develop scientific questions based on their prior scientific knowledge
  • Identify a wide range of variables and plan a valid investigation
  • Use scientific equipment effectively
  • Draw tables and graphs to record observations from an investigation
  • Suggest improvements to theirs and others investigations

 

 

Analysis and evaluation

  • Describe and explain patterns and trends from tables and graphs
  • Interpret observations from investigations and form conclusions based on scientific understanding
  • Identify evidence to support an idea
  • Apply understanding to unfamiliar contexts

 

 

Measurement

  • Use SI units for concentration, energy, mass, weight, speed, distance, spring constant, power, time, wave properties
  • Use a range of scientific equipment to take measurements during investigations
  • Use and derive equations for rate of reaction, quantitative chemistry, forces, energy transfer, efficiency and waves.

 

Cross-curricular links

  • Respiration within Physical Education
  • Using waves for communication within information technology
  • Human impact on the Earth within Geography and PSCHE

Year 11 Science Curriculum Milestones

In Year 11 students will either be studying the AQA Combined Science GCSE (2 GCSEs) or the AQA Single Sciences GCSEs (3 GCSEs).

Key Knowledge

Pupils will know:

Key Skills

Pupils will be able to:

Key threshold concepts

 

All students

  • Living things must be highly adapted to survive and flourish in their environment.
  • Industry uses quantitative chemistry to improve the efficiency of reactions.

 

Single Science students only:

  • The brain controls the body using conscientious and unconscientious signals
  • The strength of electromagnets and the power of a motor can be controlled by a range of factors
  • Understanding the properties of waves allows for effective communication
  • Our solar system is a tiny part of a galaxy, one of many billions in the universe. 

 

 

Subject-specific knowledge

All students:

  • Ecology
  • Quantitative energy

Single Science students:

  • The brain and the eye
  • Electromagnets and motors
  • Sound and light waves
  • Space

 

Exam preparation:

  • In addition to the specific concepts above all Year 11 students will revisit key content and skills covered in the previous two years of study.

Experimental skills and investigations

  • Develop scientific questions based on their prior scientific knowledge
  • Identify a wide range of variables and plan a valid investigation
  • Identify the most appropriate scientific equipment
  • Draw tables and graphs to record observations from an investigation
  • Suggest and explain improvements to theirs and others investigations

 

Analysis and evaluation

  • Describe and explain patterns and trends from tables and graphs
  • Interpret observations from investigations and form conclusions based on scientific understanding
  • Identify evidence to support an idea
  • Apply understanding to unfamiliar contexts
  • Evaluate information from a scientific study and give a justified conclusion

 

Measurement

  • Use SI units for concentration, mass, weight, current, potential difference, power, time and wave properties
  • Effectively use a range of scientific equipment to take measurements during investigations
  • Use and derive equations for quantitative chemistry and waves.

 

Cross-curricular links

  • Using waves for communication within information technology
  • Human impact on the Earth within Geography and PSCHE

How the Science Department actively promotes British Values through the curriculum

Our curriculum draws on Britain’s long and proud scientific tradition, from Hooke and Newton to more modern pioneers such as Robert Winston and Rosalind Franklin. Students are encouraged to link their learning to the outside world in particularly to careers in the Sciences. We hope to inspire our students to think about further education and a career in Science, which is a significant and world-leading sector of the UK economy.