At Key stage 3 we are using Activate which is the most popular national KS3 Science course designed to spark curiosity, kindle key skills for further investigation and fan into flame the core knowledge needed to be on fire for GCSE success. It is matched to the new national curriculum and allows learning to be assessed and moved on in a variety of ways.
Alongside high paced lessons with plenty of practical content, pupils will complete various written and interactive activities. Assessments will take the course of an extended writing piece and an online assessment every topic using a website called Kerboodle as well as a teacher marked test to allow tailored feedback. A more complete list of what topics the pupils study and their assessments and online revision tasks is on the parent/student part of the website.
In addition to regular assessments, pupils will complete terminal assessments to better prepare them for the rigours of the new GCSE. In Y9 pupils complete an introductory course to help them understand how science works practically and then they make an early start to the GCSE content.
Currently, pupils can gain one, two or three GCSEs in Science depending on their ability and their ambitions. Those that aspire to take science onto A level tend to take Triple Science (3 GCSEs). Those who may use the key skills and knowledge that science offers into a vocational setting will take Core and Additional Science (2 GCSEs). Some may take a more practical option of Core Science over two years (1 GCSE) and complete an Entry Level Certificate (ELC).
Triple Science - Pupils on this pathway will gain three GCSEs in the separate sciences; Biology, Chemistry and Physics. All examinations are at the end of Y11. They complete practical examinations called ISAs during the year which are worth 25% of their final grade. As part of their timetable they will be expected to attend period 6 lessons on a Wednesday.
Core and Additional Science - During Y10, the pupils will complete a Core GCSE in Science including modules in Biology, Chemistry, Physics and one coursework component (an ISA) worth 25% of their final grade. During Y11 they will progress to a second GCSE building on Core content following the AQA Additional Science specification with another ISA.
Core Science and ELC – The Core Science GCSE material is taught over the two year period with extra time spent on securing key practical skills and understanding. On top of this the pupils will complete teacher designed assessments and a practical ISA worth 25%.
All GCSE pupils will have yellow sheets in their books which summarise the key specification criteria and contain details of teacher/pupil feedback and homework tasks. They also have access to online tasks and revision support on the Kerboodle website. For further information of the syllabus consult the AQA website.
EXAM BOARDS - Current Y11 AQA From next year OCR with current Y10