Our aim in Science is to develop student’s knowledge and understanding of science through scientific enquiry; enhancing student’s interpersonal skills and teamwork, building resilience in learners and allowing them to become critical and creative thinkers, for life after school, in our ever-changing technological world.
Science education is an integral part of a young person’s education. Today’s citizens will need more than ever the knowledge, understanding, skills and attitudes to contribute to the scientific and technological needs of our society. At Heritage High School our students starting in Year 7 follow the AQA 5 year syllabus that provides seamless transition throughout each year across both Key Stages 3 and 4 with scientific enquiry and a focus on ‘How science works’ underpinning teaching at both key stages. Students follow a 2 Year Key Stage 3 and a 3 Year Key Stage 4 curriculum, which allows greater time and flexibility to ensure the relevant knowledge, skills and understanding is embedded to provide students with the best opportunities for success in their GCSE examinations. We engage students with fast paced lessons, covering a wide range of material taught in an exciting way to develop their theoretical and practical techniques. Students’ progress is regularly monitored and assessed, and we make use of the latest technology to deliver effective and stimulating lessons. In Science students are encouraged to become independent learners, creative thinkers and problem solvers through a more active based learning approach.
At Key Stage 3 students are taught initially in mixed ability groups in Year 7 and then grouped according to ability as determined by assessment results, examination results and teacher assessments to meet teaching and learning needs. Students at Key Stage 3 follow a 2 year curriculum learning science linked to everyday life applications such as ‘how to be a scientist’, ‘ecological relationships’, ‘particles’, ‘electricity’, ‘magnetism’ and many more encompassing all three sciences Chemistry, Physics and Biology. All of which are aimed at developing a wider range of skills through increased active and independent learning. The course encourages interest and enthusiasm for studying Science with an emphasis on practical skills developing scientific enquiry and how science works.
Students in Year 9 begin studying the AQA GCSE Combined Science (Trilogy) or GCSE Triple Science course at the start of Year 9. These qualifications equip students with the skills and attributes to continue studies at Post 16 and Higher Educational establishments to embark on careers such as medicine, engineering, forensic science and veterinary science and much more.
At Key Stage 4 (Year’s 10 and 11) students continue to follow the AQA GCSE Combined Science (Trilogy) or AQA GCSE Triple Science courses, completing either of these courses in Year 11. These courses will develop not only knowledge and understanding but equips students with the skills, attitudes and values to make informed decisions as citizens in our ever developing society. Assessment is through practical skills and linear examinations. Combined Science leads to the equivalent of 2 GCSE’s in Science whilst Triple Science award leads to 3 GCSE’s in the separate subjects Biology, Chemistry and Physics. This will equip students for careers in higher sciences including medicine, engineering and veterinary science and much more.
Assessment at Key Stage 3:
Assessment of student progress and attainment is completed through a range of standardised assessments and activities in lessons and through homework set on Show My Homework, along with end of year examinations, which are internally set. All students will be assessed against their target GCSE grade he/she should achieve by the end of the academic year and parents/carers will be informed of their child’s progress and predicted grades through reports.
Assessment at Key Stage 4:
Years 9 and 10:
Year 9 students starting GCSEs follow the AQA GCSE (9-1) Combined Sciences (equivalent to 2 GCSE grades), some students will follow the AQA GCSE (9-1) Triple Sciences Chemistry, Physics and Biology, which will include using one of their options to enable the additional time to study the higher level content of the curriculum. Assessment at the end of each GCSE qualification for both options is 100% external examinations where students complete 6 examinations. Students are assessed on their knowledge and understanding, application of knowledge and understanding, the ability to analyze information to form judgements, draw conclusions, interpret and evaluate data along with describing improvements in investigative procedures and use formulas and equations in using quantitative data. Assessment is through six externally set examinations along with developing investigative skills throughout the courses.
Throughout year’s 9 and 10 there will be a range of standardised assessments in lessons during the course for both year groups to assess progress of taught content along with prior learning and address misconceptions if they arise. Each Year group will also complete mock examinations at the end of the academic year to measure progress against their end of year target grade.
Assessment in Year 11:
Triple Science – 6 externally set examinations each 1 hour and 45 minutes represented by 2 Physics, 2 Chemistry and 2 Biology examinations.
Combined Science – 6 externally set examinations each 1 hour and 15 minutes represented by 2 Physics, 2 Chemistry and 2 Biology examinations.
Early entry is not offered and all students complete their GCSE examinations in May and June of Year 11.