Science: KS4

Science: KS4

In September 2016 a new specification for GCSEs in science were introduced alongside the reform of GCSEs in other subjects.  Science remains a compulsory subject at KS4 and all students will continue their studies at KS4 through one of two routes; combined (double) science or separate (triple) sciences. 

Year 9

Year 9 is our foundation year for GCSEs in the sciences.  Students will have 2 science teachers and will be taught biology, chemistry and physics topics.

Autumn Term

Health and Disease (biology) – in this topic students will learn about different diseases and how they are spread as well as looking at the basics of the circulatory and respiratory system.

Obtaining Useful Materials  (chemistry) – in this topic students will learn about the structure of the Earth and about different types of rocks.  They will also learn about metal ores and how they are extracted.

Waves and Energy Transfer (physics)  - in this topic students will learn how to describe waves and will study light waves and their properties in more detail.  They will also look at energy transfer by heating and cooling.

Spring Term

Variation for Survival (biology) – in this topic students will be introduced to genetics.  They will study selective breeding and evolution as well as cloning and genetic engineering.

Our Dynamic Planet  (chemistry) – in this topic students will learn about the atmosphere and how it has changed over time.  They will begin to look at pollutants and the greenhouse effect.

Atoms and the periodic table (chemistry) – in this topic students will be introduced to atomic theory.  They will learn about the structure of atoms and then study different groups in the periodic table.

 Motion on Earth and in Space (physics) – in this topic students will be learning about distance-time graphs and how motion is affected by forces.  They will begin to study the solar system and stars and galaxies.

Summer Term

Variation for Survival (continued) – see spring term

Particles (chemistry/physics) – in this topic students will learn about states of matter and changes of state.  They will be using particle theory to help them explain density.

Electricity (physics) – in this topic students will revisit simple series and parallel circuits.  They will learn about current, voltage and resistance.

 

Based on performance in this foundation year, a decision will be made at the end of year 9 as to which route students will follow in years 10 and 11:

 

Year 10

Students will have 3 specialist teachers, and will study biology, chemistry and physics topics separately. 

Autumn Term

Moving Materials – In this topic students will learn about osmosis, diffusion and active transport.  They will study the human digestive system, and the circulatory system as well as studying plant tissues, organs and systems.

Structure, Bonding and the properties of matter – students will learn about ionic, covalent and metallic bonding.  They will be taught how bonding and structure are related to the properties of a substance.  Triple science students will also learn about nanoparticles.

Chemical Quantities and calculations – students will learn about chemical measurements and conservation of mass in chemical reactions.  They will be taught about Relative Formula Mass, moles, and concentration of solutions.  Triple science students will also learn about yield and atom economy of chemical reactions.

Energy – students will study energy changes in a system, and the ways energy is stored before and after such changes.  They will also look at the conservation and dissipation of energy and look at global energy resources

Spring Term

 Health Matters – In this topic students will learn about communicable and non-communicable diseases.  They will study risk factors and how the body can be protected from disease.  Triple science students will study how monoclonal antibodies are produced and used; plant diseases and plant defences in addition to the above content.

Chemical Changes – Students will learn about the reactivity of metals and of acids.  They will be taught about electrolysis and how to make salts.  Triple science students will also be taught how to carry out a titration

Electricity – students will study current, potential difference and resistance in series and parallel circuits.  They will look at domestic supply of electricity and safety. In this topic, students will also consider energy transfers in the context of electricity. Triple science students will also study static electricity.

Summer Term

Co-ordination and Control – In this topic, students will learn about homeostasis and the nervous system.  They will learn about how human blood glucose is controlled, as well as studying hormones in human reproduction.  Triple science students will also study the brain and the eye in detail.  They will look at how body temperature, water and the nitrogen balance of the body are maintained.  Triple science students also study the control, coordination and use of plant hormones.

 

Energy Changes – Students will learn about exothermic and endothermic reactions.  They will also be taught about how energy changes can be represented and explained.  Triple science students will also be taught about chemical cells and fuel cells.

 

Rates of reaction – Students will learn how to calculate a rate of reaction; and about the factors which affect the rates of chemical reactions.  Students will be taught about collision theory and activation energy as well as studying reversible reactions and dynamic equilibrium.

 

Particle Model of Matter – students will study the particle model and will look at changes of state.  They will consider what is meant by internal energy and particle motion in gases.  Triple science students will also study pressure in gases.

 

Atomic Structure – students will revisit atomic theory.  They will study atoms and nuclear radiation.  Triple science students will study hazards and uses of radioactive emissions and of background radiation.  They will extend this topic and learn about nuclear fission and fusion.

Year 11

Students will have 3 specialist science teachers, and will study biology, chemistry and physics topics separately.

Autumn Term

Genetics – In this topic, students will learn about reproduction and genetic inheritance.  They will also study variation, evolution and will look at selective breeding and genetic engineering; as well as extinction and resistance in bacteria. Triple science students will study the structure of DNA in detail; cloning and speciation.

Rates of reaction – Students will learn how to calculate a rate of reaction; and about the factors which affect the rates of chemical reactions.  Students will be taught about collision theory and activation energy as well as studying reversible reactions and dynamic equilibrium.

Organic chemistry – Students will learn about crude oil and hydrocarbons.  The will be taught about the properties of hydrocarbons and about cracking.  Triple science students will also be taught about the reactions of alkenes and alcohols as well as polymers.

Forces and Motion – students will study contact and non-contact forces, they will compare scalar and vector quantities and calculate resultant forces. They will study Newton’s laws of motion and learn to draw and interpret graphs of motion. Students also study forces and braking; and momentum.  Finally, they will study forces and elasticity.  Triple science students will extend this topic and learn about moments, levers and gears; and will study pressure in fluids.

Spring Term

 Ecology – In this topic, students will learn about adaptations, interdependence and competition within ecosystems.  They will study levels of organisation and how materials are cycled.   They will understand biodiversity and the effect of human interactions on the environment.  Triple science students will study decomposition in detail and look at food production and farming techniques.

 

Chemical Analysis – Students will learn about pure and impure substances.  They will be taught chromatography and how to identify common gases.  Triple science students will also be taught how to identify and analyse positive and negative ions and how to use instrumental techniques (like flame emission spectroscopy) for analysis.

 

The Atmosphere – Students will learn about the composition and evolution of the Earth’s atmosphere.  They will be taught about the green house effect as well as common atmospheric pollutants and their sources.

 

Waves – students will study waves in air (and other fluids) and in solids.  They will look at the wave equations before studying electromagnetic waves. Triple science students will also study how waves can be used for detection and exploration, as well as studying lenses and black body radiation.

 

Magnetism and Electromagnetism – students will study permanent and induced magnetism, magnetic forces and fields.  They will look at the motor effect.  Triple science students will study the generator effect and will look at transformers and microphones.

 

Summer Term

During the short, summer term, students will be revising in preparation for their exams which begin in May.

Sustainable development – Students will learn about potable water, extracting metals; and about life cycle assessment and recycling.  Triple science students will also be taught about corrosion, alloys, ceramics, polymers and composite materials.  They will also learn about the Haber process and the use of NPK fertilisers.

Space This topic is for Triple science students only.  In this topic, students will look at our Solar System; the stability of orbital motion and satellites.  Students will be studying the lifecycles of stars and will learn about red-shift.

 


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Spring 2020