Why do we learn biology?
The science curriculum teaches scientific knowledge and content as well as the skills that are authentic to the discipline and so will allow students to begin to think like a scientist. It is our intention that across all key stages, students can access the practical skills required to be a scientist and that we develop their understanding of the mathematical skills which will help them process, analyse and evaluate experimental data. Our aim is to provide a robust, knowledge rich curriculum that allows all learners to emerge informed, articulate, and well able to hold their own intellectually at university and beyond. Not only this, but also, our curriculum aims to develop “citizen scientists” who are able to engage with Science when it overlaps with their lives; for example when making healthcare decisions for themselves and their families or when deciding on the type of car they might purchase.
Head of Department
Ms H Scott
Our curriculum was designed by considering what a successful scientist looks like at A level and beyond and then mapping concepts back through each year.
Each year students cover topics within a threshold. The complexity of the content deepens and become more challenging as students progress through the school years. This model ensures that pupils can internalise key concepts and use them in ever-more sophisticated ways throughout their school career. It is not only subject content, but also the mathematical and working scientifically skills which are built into the curriculum in this way. Our knowledge rich curriculum is structured as a narrative overtime, which includes a fertile question for each topic to provide a golden thread through a sequence of learning allowing students to make links in and across the sciences.
At KS3 students will be taught the core, foundational knowledge in each of the three disciplines, they will begin to grapple and make sense of why things happen, feeding their growing curiosity. The most challenging and difficult topics will be introduced early in KS3 to give the students more than one opportunity at studying and grappling with these. Core skills, such as using equations, identifying variables and drawing conclusions, will be presented here; we will use a “junior version” of what we expect at KS4 and beyond, rather than oversimplifying and losing meaning.
We have, by necessity, included all the content currently included in the AQA Separate Award, but have also included concepts not covered by the specification, but considered important to a deep understanding of scientific ideas. We include Triple Science content in Y7-9 as it means that every child has the option of taking Triple Science for GCSE when they pick options at the end of Year 9.
At KS4 students will deepen and secure their foundational knowledge and begin to use, interpret and justify why practical procedures happen, what they tell us and how we can modify them for the benefit of human and animal population.
At KS5, pupils can study A-Level Science, which deepens their understanding of each subject discipline, preparing pupils for further education. A BTEC Extended Diploma in Biomedical Science will also be available for pupils who are interested in pursuing a career in a practical aspect of Biology.
Monomers and polymers
Nucleic acids are important information-carrying molecules ATP
All cells arise from other cells
Transport across cell membranes
Cell recognition and the immune system
Organisms exchange substances with their environment
Surface area to volume ratio
Digestion and absorption
Mass transport in animals
Mass transport in plants
Energy transfers in and between organisms
Energy and ecosystems
Organisms respond to changes in their internal and external environments
Stimuli, both internal and external, are detected and lead to a response
Survival and response
Control of heart rate
Skeletal muscles are stimulated to contract by nerves and act as effectors
Homeostasis is the maintenance of a stable internal environment
Principles of homeostasis and negative feedback
Control of blood glucose concentration Control of blood water potential
Genetics, populations, evolution and ecosystems
Genetics, populations, evolution and ecosystems
Evolution may lead to speciation Populations in ecosystems
The control of gene expression
Alteration of the sequence of bases in DNA can alter the structure of proteins
Most of a cell’s DNA is not translated Regulation of transcription and translation Gene expression and cancer
Using genome projects
Gene technologies allow the study and alteration of gene function allowing a better understanding of organism function and the design of new industrial and medical processes
Recombinant DNA technology
Differences in DNA between individuals of the same species can be exploited for identification and diagnosis of heritable conditions
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