Science

The Purbeck School Science Curriculum

Why Study Science at The Purbeck School?

Thirty years ago it would have been hard to imagine recent developments such as nanotechnology, alternative energy, environmental concerns, ‘GM’ foods, cloning and stem cell technology and it is fair to say that we cannot predict all the advancements of the next thirty years.  It is therefore our aim to develop students’ critical thinking and develop lifelong skills that will allow them to adapt to this rapidly advancing world.

How is Science taught?

  • KS3 (year 7 science) – Students are taught in mixed ability classes for 6 hours each fortnight by two teachers. Students cover 6 KS3 units, x2 Biology, x2 Chemistry and x2 Physics).
  • KS3 (year 8 science) – Students are taught in mixed ability classes for 6 hours each fortnight by two teachers. Students cover 6 KS3 units, x2 Biology, x2 Chemistry and x2 Physics).
  • KS3/4 transition (year 9 science until autumn half-term) – Students are taught in mixed ability classes for 9 hours each fortnight by three specialist teachers. Students cover 3 KS3/KS4 units, x1 Biology, x1 Chemistry and x1 Physics).
  • KS4 (year 9 science from autumn half-term) – Students are taught in mixed ability classes for 9 hours each fortnight by three specialist teachers. Students cover introductory GCSE units (Biology, Chemistry and Physics).
  • KS4 (year 10 combined science) – Students are taught in either a higher or foundation mixed ability classes for 9 hours each fortnight by three specialist teachers. Students cover remaining Paper 1 GCSE units (Biology, Chemistry and Physics).
  • KS4 (year 10 triple science) – Students are taught higher mixed ability classes for 15 hours each fortnight by three specialist teachers. Students cover remaining Paper 1 GCSE units (Biology, Chemistry and Physics).
  • KS4 (year 11 combined science) – Students are taught in either a higher or foundation mixed ability classes for 9 hours each fortnight by three specialist teachers. Students cover remaining Paper 2 GCSE units (Biology, Chemistry and Physics).
  • KS4 (year 11 triple science) – Students are taught higher mixed ability classes for 15 hours each fortnight by three specialist teachers. Students cover remaining Paper 2 GCSE units (Biology, Chemistry and Physics).

Rationale and ambition for The Purbeck School Science Curriculum:

  • Our curriculum is content specific, coherent, cumulative and challenging.
  • Revise and improve time cements the foundations and closes the knowledge/skills gap.
  • Deliberate practice is planned that provides a variety of contexts to use and apply knowledge and skills.
  • Review and improve time celebrates students successes and allows intervention opportunities.
  • Formative assessment is specific and checks student understanding regularly. It identifies errors and misconceptions, which are addressed rapidly.
  • Low stakes quizzing supports students learn knowledge and skills off by heart.
  • Concrete, pictorial and abstract representations are used to provide students access to new learning.
  • Scientific language is developed until fluent and confident.

Key concepts:

The concepts that The Purbeck School Science curriculum aims to support student progression in are:

Biology:

  • Key idea 1: Life processes depend on molecules whose structure is related to their function
  • Key idea 2: Life on Earth depends on photosynthesis
  • Key idea 3: Organic compounds are used as fuels
  • Key idea 4: The fundamental units of living organisms are cells
  • Key idea 5: Living organisms are grouped as species; each species adapts to their environment and is interdependent on other species in their ecosystem
  • Key idea 6: Chemicals in ecosystems are constantly cycled
  • Key idea 7: Evolution occurs by natural selection
  • Key idea 8: An organism’s genome helps it adapt to its environment

Chemistry:

  • Key idea 1: Matter is made of particles called atoms
  • Key idea 2: Elements show periodic relationships in their chemical and physical properties
  • Key idea 3: Periodic relationships can be explained by atomic structure
  • Key idea 4: Atoms bond by either transferring electrons or by sharing electrons
  • Key idea 5: The shapes of molecules and the way giant structures are arranged helps explain the way they behave
  • Key idea 6: Barriers to reaction mean reactions occur at different rates
  • Key idea 7: Chemical reactions take place via proton (H+) transfer, electron transfer, or electron sharing
  • Key idea 8:  Energy is conserved in chemical reactions

Physics:

  • Key idea 1: Models and theories
  • Key idea 2: Cause and effect
  • Key idea 3: Difference and change
  • Key idea 4: Action at a distance
  • Key idea 5: The scientific method
  • Key idea 6: The language of science

Useful links:

National Curriculum Science: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/national-curriculum-in-england-science-programmes-of-study

GCSE and A level Specifications: https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/gcse

Long Term Overview – Year 7

Long Term Overview – Year 8

 

Latest News

The Purbeck School Science Fair 2020

The Purbeck School Science Fair 2020 Saturday 28th March 1 –4pm Free and no need to book, simply come along on the day ‘We had lots of hands-on fun and learned so much!’ All ages! Come and take part in an exciting range of free, inspiring

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Last Monday Year 11 students and parents attended the Year 11 information evening to find out more about the forthcoming mock and formal examinations. The powerpoint that was used by Mr Darley, Mr Morris, Mr Foyle, and Mr McNaughton is available here: Yr 11 GCSE information

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On Saturday 27th of April, the Purbeck School held its annual Science fair. Now in its fifth year, this hugely popular event hit record attendance and proved to be a fantastic day out for all those who attended. Students from across the school and members of

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The Purbeck School Science Fair 2019

Saturday 27th April from 1pm – 4pm Fun, free and a great educational afternoon out for the whole family! No need to book, simply come along on the day ‘We had lots of hands-on fun and learned so much!’ All ages! Come and take part in

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