Our educational philosophy in science is to try to promote science literacy for the future for all students, including students who do not study science beyond year 11.
To help promote this we try to articulate students the following:
- The real world examples of the science and how science impacts us now.We do this within every lesson but looking at a big question we call “ever wondered why”.This tries to add a real world example to the science students learn to make it more accessible why students need to recall information.
- It is virtually impossible to know everything, especially in a large subject like science and purity is best.We would much rather students were experts in parts of smaller science than have misconceptions and lack of understanding across a broader range.We believe that practice makes learning stick and our homework booklets, revision guides and knowledge organisers reflect this.
- Science is engaging and practical science is an important part of learning and helps prepare students to be critical of whatever they may decide to do in the future.
Science is engaging and challenging but most importantly it helps create deeper learning of the world. The science careers which students most commonly aspire to enter include:
- Medical careers – Doctors, Dentistry, optometry, veterinary, physiotherapy, nursing/midwifery, radiographer, paramedic, pharmacist etc.
- Engineering – Mechanical , software, civil etc.
- Research – Biological research, pharmaceutical research and biochemical studies etc.
It is also the case that science provides a much wider career path than the “traditional” science careers, in recent years we have had students go off to study:
- Primary/Secondary education
- Data analysis
Our philosophy is that science is an effective way to prepare students for successful future careers, in a broad spectrum of possible places.
The KS3 curriculum is built on the 6 pillars of a good scientist:
- Cell Biology – Studying the structures of cells in plants, animals and bacteria and the processes that cells undergo.
- Genetics – Understanding the make of DNA, genes and genetic material creates characteristics in organisms.
- Atomic structure – The study of the particles which make up everything and how are understanding evolved over time
- Chemical Reactions – Identifying when and how reactions occur and establish patterns in relation to the modern periodic table
- Forces – Provide understanding of the laws and principles which guide how objects interact
- Energy – Energy cannot be created or destroyed… Unpicking the reasons why this statement is vital to the understanding of physics
All students work towards a combined science qualification which gives students two grades for science. Students study the AQA GCSE Combined Science: Trilogy specification AQA GCSE Combined Science: Trilogy
This comprises learning biology, chemistry and physics and builds on learning from years 7, 8 and 9.
- B1 Cells
- B2 Organisation
- B3 Infection and response
- B4 Bioenergetics
- B5 Homeostasis and response
- B6 Inheritance, variation and evolution
- B7 Ecology
- C1 Atomic structure and the Periodic Table
- C2 Structure and bonding
- C3 Quantitative chemistry
- C4 Chemical changes
- C5 Energy changes
- C6 Rate and extent of chemical reactions
- C7 Organic chemistry
- C8 Chemical analysis
- C9 Chemistry of the Atmosphere
- C10 Using resources
- P1 Energy
- P2 Electricity
- P3 Particle model of matter
- P4 Atomic structure
- P5 Forces
- P6 Waves
- P7 Magnetism and electromagnetism
Students also complete required practicals to develop practical and investigation skills across the three sciences.
Post 16 science involves studying the individual subjects of Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Students sit AS qualifications at the end of year 12 and continue this onto the A level qualifications in year 13. Biology comprises of the further study of the human body and ecology in further detail. Chemistry delves deeper in the way atoms interact with each other and how chemists can use this to synthesise new molecules, while physics looks at sub-atomic particles in further detail and studying of objects in space.
Students study the OCR A GCE science specifications:
Chemistry AS/A-level: https://www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/as-and-a-level/chemistry-a-h032-h432-from-2015/
All three science A-levels include a practical endorsement which involves 12 Practical Activity Groups covering a range of practical and investigative techniques.