Science

Information about Science: Dual & Triple Award and Horticulture.

The Science Department aims to consolidate and build on Key Stage 2 Science skills, confidence and understanding to achieve success at all levels.

We do this by providing a safe and secure learning environment that encourages positive behaviours and independent learning with an emphasis on the importance of thorough investigative skills.

The Science Department at Birkdale High School Academy is a young, vibrant, forward thinking hub of activity. The department welcomes new initiatives and believes that the needs of the learner should come first.

The department consists of 7 laboratories and 5 prep rooms. The department is well resourced with a range of practical equipment.

Science Detail

Document with detailed department information.

KS3 Overview

We have recently moved back from a two year KS3 to a three year KS3, this is to allow students more time to develop the fundamental skills needed to succeed at GCSE Science and beyond.

Our current Year 9 (Class 2018) will be the first Year to sit the new GCSEs.

Teaching groups

Each year group has been divided into sets based on their KS2 results, CAT scores, FFT data and exam results. These are monitored throughout the year.

Year 7, 8 and 9 are all set from 1-6. Each set has 6 lessons per fortnight. 2 lessons each for Biology, Chemistry and Physics.


Year 7 topics

Biology

  • B1 Cells and tissues
  • B2 Animal + Plant reproduction
  • B3 Environment and adaptation
  • B4 Variation and classification

Chemistry

  • C1 Particles
  • C2 Atoms and elements
  • C3 Acids and alkalis
  • C4 Pure and impure substances

Physics

  • P1 Energy transfers
  • P2 Forces and effects
  • P3 Electricity
  • P4 Energy resources

Year 7 detail

Year 7 topics in detail

Year 8 topics

Biology

  • B5 Photosynthesis
  • B6 Food and digestion
  • B7 Lungs and gas exchange
  • B8 Respiration

Chemistry

  • C5 Simple chemical reactions
  • C6 Compounds
  • C7 Periodic Table
  • C8 Extracting metals

Physics

  • P5 Magnets and electromagnets
  • P6 Motion
  • P7 Domestic and static electricity
  • P8 Waves and sound

Year 8 detail

Year 8 topics in detail

Year 9 topics

Biology

  • B9 Muscles & Bones
  • B10 Inheritance & Evolution
  • B11 Drugs & Health
  • B12 Microbes

Chemistry

  • C9 Reactions of Acids
  • C10 Describing Reactions
  • C11 Earth & Atmosphere
  • C12 Innovative Materials

Physics

  • P9 Light
  • P10 Application of Forces
  • P11 Heat Transfer
  • P12 Exploring Space

Year 9 detail

Year 9 topics in detail

At Key Stage 4 the students will build on their prior learning and follow one of the following pathways: Additional Science Pathway or Triple Science Pathway (for more able students).


Additional Science

All students from the classes of 2015, 2016 and 2017 will be following the AQA GCSE Science 2011 syllabus. Most students will study for 2 GCSE grades in Science (Science A and Additional Science). More able students can select to study Triple Science.

Year 10. AQA GCSE Science A (4405), this is the equivalent of 1 G.C.S.E. Grades A*-G.
Year 11. AQA GCSE Additional Science (4408), this is the equivalent of 1 G.C.S.E. Grades A*-G.

students will receive 9 lessons of Science per fortnight; 3 lessons of the 9 will be covering Biology, 3 Chemistry and 3 Physics. Students will have a specialist teacher for each area.

Assessment

75% of each GCSE will be external assessment examinations. There will be three 1 hour written papers worth 60 marks (equal to 25% of the final grade) and will include closed questions, structured questions and questions needing longer answers. The remaining 25% will be in the form of a practical controlled assessment and corresponding papers.

Where can Additional Science lead?

Additional Science provides a platform for progression to A Level Science, other further education courses or into employment. This qualification develops a variety of key skills that can be used in all areas of working life beyond education.

Modules list

Document summarising GCSE Science Modules.

AQA Specification

Link to the AQA Science A specification.

AQA Specification

Link to the AQA Additional Science specification.


Triple Science

More able students can choose follow the Triple Science Pathway.

Year 10 & 11 GCSE Biology (4401), GCSE Chemistry (4402) and GCSE Physics AQA (4403).

In order to deliver the required number of lessons a fortnight, students must take Science as an option. This will not be open to all boys and the criteria for this pathway will be discussed with the boys in Year 9. Students will receive 15 lessons of Science per fortnight; 5 lessons of the 15 will be covering Biology, 5 Chemistry and 5 Physics. Students will have a specialist teacher for each of these 3 areas of Science.

This is a demanding pathway to follow and we will be using data from the boys attitude to learning, homework and attainment to decide on whether this is an appropriate route on an individual basis. We have suggested this as a pathway to those boys who not only have the capability but also a strong desire to succeed in each individual element of Science.

Assessment

75% of each GCSE will be external assessments in the form of examinations. There will be three 1 hour written papers worth 60 marks (equal to 25% of the final grade) and will include closed questions, structured questions and questions needing longer answers. The remaining 25% will be in the form of a practical controlled assessment and corresponding papers.

Unlike the Science A and Additional Science ALL examinations will be sat at the end of the course. This will mean that students studying for these exams will sit 9 exams (3 exams per subject) spread over only 6 days during May/June of year 11.

Where can Triple Science lead?

Triple Science is a demanding academic course which will prepare them for pursuing Science at A Level and beyond. This qualification develops a variety of key skills that can be used in all areas of working life beyond education.

AQA Specification

Link to the AQA Biology specification.

AQA Specification

Link to the AQA Chemistry specification.

AQA Specification

Link to the AQA Physics specification.

Modules list

Document summarising GCSE Science Modules.

Horticulture

Students may take the OCR Cambridge Nationals in Business and Enterprise level 1 / 2 from Yr 10 onwards as an option subject.

There are three different elements to this course.

  • Introduction to Business
  • Planning for Work
  • Setting Up and Running an Enterprise

OCR Specification

Link to the OCR Cambridge Nationals specification.

Business

The Introduction to Business unit will provide learners with knowledge and understanding of how different forms of business ownership operate. It will cover how businesses are run in terms of their form of ownership, the impact of external factors on business success, understanding the different objectives businesses may have, and the key functional areas within a business which enable it to operate effectively.

Curriculum

Learners will be taught different forms of business ownership and consider which of these forms of ownership are appropriate for different forms of business. They will be introduced to the concept of business objectives and understand how, and why, they are important to a business, and indeed why they may change over time.

Learners will also look at factors which impact on small, medium and large businesses such as basic social and economic factors and understand the restrictions that these factors place on business activity. They will also begin to consider how a business operates in terms of its key functional areas and the specific activities and responsibilities within each area.

The unit encourages learners to take the knowledge they have acquired from the teaching, and investigate how this relates to businesses in the real world. The external assessment will draw on the learners research and assess what they have learned, in an applied context, to a fictional business.

Pathway

On completion of this unit, learners will have developed analytical and evaluative skills by conducting research on real businesses and applying this in the examination so that they have an understanding of business operations and their application in a realistic context. The skills and knowledge acquired by completing this unit will be transferable to further learning in their qualification, in terms of being able to apply business knowledge to enterprise activities in other units. It will also assist learners entering the world of work in terms of understanding how businesses operate.

The assessment is a 1hr exam.

Planning

The Planning for Work unit will provide learners with skills and knowledge which will assist them with planning for their future career and preparing for entering the world of work. Learners will gain an understanding of job roles within businesses, they will take part in the recruitment process, and they will evaluate how they currently see themselves in terms of their career aims. They will then create a career plan to help them understand how to achieve these aims.

Curriculum

They will learn why it is important for businesses to recruit the right staff with the right skills in order to produce goods/services to meet customer requirements. They will also learn about the recruitment process, including finding out about job descriptions, person specifications and how these are used by businesses to recruit. Learners will gain knowledge of how businesses use these tools, and then go on to use this knowledge as applicants. They will learn techniques for self-assessment, how to identify employment areas of interest to them and how to match job role requirements to their own self-assessment. They will learn how to apply for a job and how to produce a career plan. Learners will be able to use this work as a basis to plan for future employment opportunities.

Pathway

On completion of this unit, learners will be equipped with the skills and knowledge to help them plan for employment. It will also provide them with knowledge of the different roles which are available in a business enterprise. This has direct links to Setting up and running an enterprise, where the learners awareness of their own skill-set, in relation to different roles and responsibilities within an enterprise, is key.

The assessment is through a controlled assessment conducted over 10hrs.

Enterprise

The Setting Up and Running an Enterprise unit will provide learners with an understanding of enterprise activities in a business context. The learner will develop skills which will help to: identify and plan enterprise activities, contribute towards the implementation of an enterprise activity, and review both their own contribution to the enterprise and how successful the enterprise activities were.

Curriculum

The teaching and assessment of this unit builds on many of the areas covered in unit R061, including the external factors that affect business enterprises, the key functions of business (finance, marketing, production/operations and human resources), and their relevance to an enterprise activity. It also builds on the skills developed in unit R062 when skill-sets are matched to roles, and encourages the application of these skills during the planning stages of an enterprise.

Learners will look at what an enterprise activity is and factors which make one viable. They will be able to identify any constraints which may affect the success of an enterprise and consider how to overcome these. Learners will be encouraged to generate their own innovative ideas for an enterprise activity, which if deemed viable, will form the basis for the rest of this unit.

The unit encourages learners to work collaboratively and will enhance their communication, presentation, team-working and negotiation skills. It also develops time-management and project planning skills, skills that will help learners relate what they are learning in the classroom to the real world of work. Learners will have the opportunity to take on different roles and tasks within the enterprise activity, encouraging them to work towards both team objectives and to manage individual areas of personal responsibility. Although activities may be largely team-based, it is the learners individual contribution to the enterprise activity which will be assessed. It is therefore important that each learner is aware of how each separate business function operates and how these functions must co-ordinate with each other to ensure the overall success of the enterprise.

Pathway

On completion of this unit, learners will have identified and planned an enterprise activity, and then gone on to implement these plans. They will have developed evaluative skills by conducting a thorough review of both their own contribution to the activity and of the enterprise itself, identifying areas for improvement. The skills and knowledge acquired by completing this unit will be transferable to further learning or the world of work project planning, time-management, creative thinking, teamwork and decision-making are all highly-valued attributes in both areas.

The assessment is through a written project.

It is anticipated that this project will be based around the Horticultural sector and students will spend a significant amount of time working in out Horticulture department.

About Us

Birkdale High School, a limited company registered in England and Wales under Company number 07695504.

Registered address: Windy Harbour Road, Southport PR8 3DT

Headteacher: G Bourgade

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