Intent – What are we aiming to achieve through our curriculum?
- To develop our students curiosity in the world around them giving them the tools to ask questions and find answers through the concepts, processes and methods of science.
- To enthuse students by engaging them in practical activities that help them develop a passion for Science.
- To develop the habit of regular revision and research through reading, watching educational programmes and videos, and completing practical tasks as part of home learning.
- To relate Science to other subjects and to real life, and help students acquire ecological culture and behaviour.
- To develop students’ ethical, social and cultural awareness in a variety of ways based on practical and reflective tasks in Science lessons.
- To ensure students leave The Valley School with a Science qualification which reflects the best of their ability.
Implementation – How are we delivering our curriculum?
- Students have full access to the Science National Curriculum which is differentiated to meet students’ learning needs and styles.
- The Science curriculum is designed to be challenging yet appropriate to each student’s stage of development.
- In KS3 Science is part of the topic based curriculum. This encourages students to think of Science as the study of the world around them rather than something that happens in a laboratory. In year 7 and 8 our students study science as part of their “core time” lessons. This means it is integrated with the other core subjects. In year 9 we begin delivering the units from entry level Science which integrate best into the topic based curriculum. This transitions our students into discrete Science lessons whilst maintaining their understanding of Science as part of their wider learning.
- The KS4 Science curriculum is taught in a fully equipped Science laboratory by a Science specialist giving our students the benefits of traditional Science lessons while adapting the curriculum to their needs. Our students study OCR Entry Level Science.
Teaching and Learning
- Our students are taught by their class teachers in years 7 and 8. In year 9 each of the tutors works with the subject lead to deliver core subject lessons.
- Our year 10 and 11 students are taught by a Science specialist in a Science laboratory. Our Science Subject Leader is a fully qualified Science specialist with over 10 years’ experience in delivering Science in special needs settings.
- Science home learning is provided on a weekly basis and includes “do try this at home” tasks such as using universal indicator paper to test the pH of household substances.
- Scientific vocabulary is supported through signs and symbols, students study as a whole class, as small groups and as individuals depending upon task and learning needs. Practical tasks are modelled with an emphasis on transferable skills such as risk assessment.
Impact – What difference is the curriculum making to our students?
- The majority of students meet their expected progress in Science.
- All students who attend Science lessons study a balanced curriculum covering the 3 Sciences – Biology, Chemistry and Physics with a focus on transferable skills they will use throughout their lives.
- Scientific enquiry with its broader social and ethical meaning and significance, is embedded across the school and feeds in to all subjects; just as all subjects feed into Science.
- Learning science and the laws governing nature helps students understand our connections to the world we live in and develop as all-round individuals.
- Practical skills and life-skills are embedded in the Science curriculum and are personalised for each student. This supports students to make the leap to post-16 provision and meets their needs when entering the world of work.