Science

Lisa Murray - Head of Science - lisa.murray@swale.at

Nothing in life is to be feared, it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less.

MARIE CURIE

Subject Overview

We teach science at PCS because we are passionate about our subject and want to achieve the following for our students;

  • Equip learners with a broad and depthful knowledge of science as well as an understanding of scientific methodology, so that they can understand the world around them and make informed decisions

  • Encourage learners to be inquisitive and thoughtful, to develop their analytical skills so that they can problem-solve and think critically in order to contribute to society

  • To promote science as a career pathway, a lifelong vocation or an avocation, particularly for our disadvantaged learners and those under-represented in science

We teach a broad science curriculum that encompasses all the sciences; Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Earth Science, which are taught independently but interleaved together throughout the year.

Our curriculum model is about students developing models around core concepts in science, such as energy, and then building upon these models with new knowledge as they move through KS3 and into KS4. Concepts are revisited regularly, misconceptions challenged and links are made between them (for example between energy and particles). 

Science is taught by passionate teachers who love their subject. We promote students' intrinsic curiosity for learning through awe and wonder. Our science curriculum is ambitious and differentiated, challenging all learners to reach their full potential. As well as building their scientific knowledge, all of our modules include opportunities for learners to develop their practical skills, analyse and interpret data, and to develop their scientific communication skills.

Teaching and Learning

KS3

At KS3 in Science out students all follow the same pathway that is centred around the following core concepts of science; living organisms, ecosystems, matter, chemical reactions, forces and motion, energy, earth science & working scientifically.

Students have four lessons a week and regularly revisit each concept where they can recap their knowledge, address misconceptions and build upon their previous knowledge.

Year 7

In terms 1&2 students will be looking at;

  • The science lab & practical work

  • Cells and microscopes

  • Particles and states of matter 

  • An introduction to forces.

In terms 3&4 students will be looking at;

  • The structure and function of body systems

  • Elements, atoms and compounds

  • Sound

  • Chemical Reactions

In terms 5&6 students will be looking at;

  • Reproduction

  • Light

  • Space

  • Acids & Alkalis

Year 8

In terms 1&2 students will be looking at;

  • Working scientifically (science practical skills)

  • Anatomy & Gas Exchange

  • Sound waves

  • Separation Techniques

In terms 3&4 students will be looking at;

  • Puberty and Menstruation

  • Light

  • Nutrition & Digestion

  • The Periodic Table

In terms 5&6 students will be looking at;

  • Photosynthesis

  • An overview of what they have learnt over the year

  • Exploring outdoor investigative skills

Year 9

In terms 1&2 students will be looking at;

  • Atoms

  • Forces & Motions

  • Electricity & Magnetism

  • Earth Sciences

In terms 3&4 students will ....

  • Genetics

  • Atoms 

  • An introduction to biology, chemistry and physics at GCSE

In terms 5&6 students will …

  • B1. Cell Level Systems (GCSE)

  • C1. Particles (GCSE)

KS4

At KS4 we follow the OCR Gateway specification. Most students will do combined science and leave with two GCSEs, some students may do triple science and leave with three separate GCSEs. Those following combined science will have 5 lessons a week, and those doing triple will have 7 lessons a week.

Combined Specification; https://www.ocr.org.uk/Images/234596-specification-accredited-gcse-gateway-science-suite-combined-science-a-j250.pdf

Biology Specification (Triple science); https://www.ocr.org.uk/Images/234594-specification-accredited-gcse-gateway-science-suite-biology-a-j247.pdf

Chemistry Specification (Triple science);

https://www.ocr.org.uk/Images/234598-specification-accredited-gcse-gateway-science-suite-chemistry-a-j248.pdf

Physics Specification (Triple Science);

https://www.ocr.org.uk/Images/234600-specification-accredited-gcse-gateway-science-suite-physics-a-j249.pdf

Year 10

In terms 1&2 students will complete the following modules;

  • C2 Elements, Compounds & Mixtures 

  • P1 Matter 

  • P2 Forces

  • B2 Scaling Up 

In terms 3&4 students will complete the following modules;

  • P3 Electricity and Magnetism

  • C3 Chemical Reactions 

  • B3 Organism Level Systems 

In terms 5&6 students will complete the following modules;

  • C4 Predicting & Identifying Reactions & Products 

  • B4 Community Level Systems 

  • P4 Waves and Radioactivity

Year 11

In terms 1&2 students will complete the following modules;

  • B5 Genes, Inheritance and Selection 

  • C5 Reactions & Products

  • C6 Global Challenges 

  • P5 Energy 

In terms 3&4 students will complete the following modules;

  • P6 Global Challenges - 6 lessons

  • B6 Global challenges - 13 lessons

In term 5 students will be;

  • Reviewing and revising content from Year 10

  • Looking at recent assessments and reviewing any gaps in their knowledge

Additional Resources

Books we recommend for GCSE:

Combined Science

CPG Grade 9-1 Combined Science OCR Gateway Revision Guide Higher (grade 1-5) OR Foundation (grade 5-9)

Triple Science

CPG Grade 9-1 Biology OCR Gateway Revision Guide

CPG Grade 9-1 Chemistry OCR Gateway Revision Guide

CPG Grade 9-1 Physics OCR Gateway Revision Guide

Websites we recommend;

KS3

BBC Bitesize: https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/subjects/zng4d2p

Oak Academy:

https://classroom.thenational.academy/

KS4

BBC Bitesize:

Combined - https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/examspecs/z2dqqhv

Biology - ​​https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/examspecs/z3dj82p

Chemistry - https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/examspecs/z92x7hv

Physics - https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/subjects/zpm6fg8