Science at Elements Academy is planned to develop and encourage a ‘can do’ mindset in learners ensuring that the curriculum is relevant and accessible to all whilst providing appropriate stretch and challenge at every stage. Pupils will leave Elements Academy with an appropriate range of qualifications in science that allow them to make positive choices in preparation for adulthood.
It is the intention that the Science department will seek to allow the Science curriculum to evolve
to include the following aims:
- To ensure and promote the provision of stretch and challenge to all students at Elements Academy.
- To develop a practical and engaging high-quality curriculum that adheres to the aims of the national curriculum fostering a healthy curiosity and interest in the sciences.
- To deliver lessons where children learn through varied systematic investigations, leading to them being equipped for life to ask and answer scientific questions about the world around them.
- To build skills of independence and resilience in a safe and nurturing environment where pupils feel comfortable to challenge or question their own learning as well as the teachings of others.
- To promote the preparation of our students for the next stage of their education and adulthood by ensuring that the teaching of Science provides opportunities for pupils to consider how their own learning in Science contributes to the decision-making processes relating to future employment, independence, community inclusion and their own health and wellbeing.
Implementation is how the curriculum is delivered; it is the journey of learning from Year 7 through to Year 11. In Science, we seek to develop a broad, rich, and rigorous curriculum that stretches and challenges all our students.
Working Scientifically skills are embedded into lessons where appropriate to ensure these skills are being developed throughout the student’s school career so that they can apply their knowledge of Science when using equipment, conducting experiments and investigation, building arguments, and explaining concepts.
At KS3 content is mapped under the 10 AQA ‘big idea’ headings: Forces, Electromagnetism, Energy, Waves, Matter, Reactions, Earth, Organisms, Ecosystems and Genes. Each idea contains smaller topics: the building blocks for the big ideas and these smaller topics form the half termly themes for learning. Pupils in KS3 receive 3 lessons of Science per week. At KS3 the aim is that all pupils will have the opportunity to access accreditation through the AQA Unit Award Scheme.
At KS4 pupils receive 4 lessons of science per week. Learning in KS4 builds on that of KS3 with students further developing skills of investigation and reporting as well as applying the skills and knowledge gained at KS3 to address more complex and abstract Scientific issues and ideas.
At Elements Academy KS4 pupils will work towards the AQA GCSE Trilogy qualification with most pupils accessing the foundation level. Those who are more able may complete the higher-level examinations.
Students with sporadic school attendance may be entered for Physics Single Science GCSE or the AQA Entry Level Certificate depending on ability.
The Science department forms part of the STEM faculty where regular meetings take place to discuss students’ progression and effective pedagogy. Through enrichment days, such as ‘science week’, we aim to promote the profile of STEM subjects and allow time for students to work across KS2 to KS4 and freely explore scientific topics.
Within school, we aim for Science to be a high-profile subject. Students will be enthusiastic and motivated scientific learners. Outdoor learning will be utilised where appropriate for Science lessons. Students will have an awareness of the full range of scientific careers and pathways available to them and will be keen to pursue STEM subjects in the future. As a department, we seek to ensure that when our students leave Elements Academy, they are well-rounded, resilient, and independent young people. We want our students to realise the importance of Science to their everyday lives and use what they have learnt to make informed choices as adults. We aim for students to leave with an excellent set of Science examination results and a planned path forward in preparation for adulthood.