Science is a core subject studied by all secondary age students. At Key Stage 3, students follow the KS3 AQA Science curriculum closely to enable our students to follow a spiral curriculum up to GCSE and have three lessons a week. At KS4 our students study the AQA Trilogy specification, where students study Chemistry, Physics and Biology topics and a series of Required Practicals in each discipline. At KS4 students have five lessons a week. The AQA Trilogy specification is an integrated Science qualification which is the most commonly followed in Merton mainstream schools.
We work in a challenging educational setting, where students previous experience in Science lessons may not be as positive as it could be. Underpinning the design of the Science curriculum is the overall aim of re-engaging students in their education. We understand that for many pupils this represents a considerable challenge as in nearly all cases they have come to us due to a breakdown in their previous setting. For this reason, our approach to the Science curriculum needs to be flexible, tailored around students interests and differentiated to meet the needs of all learners.
As well as being academic, Science is also very much a practical subject and as well as carrying out the Required Practicals at KS4, practical work is used as much as possible in order to contextualise a particular topic and to enhance engagement and enjoyment of Science. Ultimately, our aim is to enable students to either get back into a mainstream setting, progress to further education or training or to be well prepared to enter employment.
Our intent is that our curriculum:
- Will foster a curiosity about the world around us
- enable citizens of the future to understand and explore the world effectively and to be able to use scientific principles to both answer and ask questions about the universe and everything in it.
- inspires a love of learning and curiosity about the world
- ensures students understand the scientific method – and can apply this process to questions they might ask
- develops the practical knowledge and skills to use scientific equipment safely and accurately to competently test ideas and demonstrate phenomena
- fosters a sense of awe in the beauty of our universe and how we can work together (or individually) to deepen our understanding of the physical, biological and chemical processes which govern the universe.
- informs knowledge of the key workings of the human body so that educated opinions and decisions can be made about health, products and stories in the media
- develops analytical skills to scrutinise data presented in any format to draw out meaning
- combines basic Maths and English skills in context to help students develop their application skills
- informs students of issues facing themselves and the wider world to help this and future generations look after themselves and their planet
- ensures students leave education able to critically analyse and evaluate data, stories and phenomena in everyday situations
- improves transferable skills such as teamwork and organisation
- develops students learning skills and independence so they can go on to be life-long learners
- makes students more employable and become self-sufficient and productive members of society
- delivers opportunities to apply the skills learnt in the form of a wide range of practicals
- helps students develop logical thinking and problem solving skills
- teaches students how to be safe and evaluate risks in everyday life and in particular scientific contexts