The intent of the science curriculum is to promote an interest in science and its importance as a subject in the modern world. The curriculum intends to provide students with the necessary skills to become competent scientists with a broad knowledge base. These skills which include investigation and enquiry is built on throughout the cyclic nature of the KS3 course and through KS4 by the delivery of the GCSE required practicals and other investigations delivered throughout the course.
The emphasis on investigation skills is important as not only is this an essential skill for scientists as this is how the scientific model has allowed humans to develop as a society, it is also a great transferrable skill that will help the students in other areas of their education.
The curriculum intends to make students more aware of their own place in the world and universe also how their bodies work and the role of science in society and how science is critical to our modern world.
The intent of the cyclic nature of the science curriculum is to revisit topics annually during KS3 and then again ta KS4 to build on prior learning and to try to make the learning more concrete as it is revisited and consolidated more frequently.
Students begin their science education at Friesland with an introductory module which introduces the students to the laboratory and the role it has to play in investigations. This learning prepares them for their further study at KS3,4 and 5.
We have redeveloped our Science KS3 curriculum so that it is excellent preparation for the new GCSEs. This redevelopment was based upon these two fundamental principles:
1. The science studied should be challenging for all pupils;
2. It is based on practical science skills to teach our pupils how scientists investigate the world around us.
The curriculum is split equally between Chemistry, Biology and Physics topics. The topics follow a cyclic pattern of learning through Year 7 into Year 8. This approach allows students to revisit topics and study them at greater depth. This deepens their understanding and improves retention of knowledge.
The key principles of the KS4 curriculum are exactly the same as the KS3 curriculum. It intends to be challenging, seeks to develop practical investigations skills and to ensure students understand the role of science in the modern world.
Students begin the KS4 curriculum in Y9. All students study the AQA Combined Science: Trilogy GCSE course apart from a selection of students who study AQA single science GCSEs in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. The intent of the curriculum at KS4 is to build on knowledge and skills learnt in KS3. Links are made to the role science has to play in the modern world through the teaching of the curriculum. The course is split equally between biology, chemistry and physics modules which are all taught throughout Years 9-11, culminating in six external examinations for all pupils at the end of Year 11. We build skills in exam technique, practical skills and subject knowledge to best prepare pupils for the rigors of GCSE examinations.
Specification links – https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/gcse
Progression from GCSE Science post-16
For those who achieve Grade 6 or above in any GCSE Science there is the option of selecting one or more of our highly successful A-Level courses in Biology, Chemistry and Physics.
For those with a Grade 4 in any GCSE Science there is the option to study the Level 3 BTEC Applied Science course, which is the equivalent of an A-Level.
Over time the A-Level subjects at Friesland have been very successful with positive VA scores. The separate sciences have also been very successful with above national average progress. Combined science has seen above national average attainment in the last 2 years.