Science Curriculum Intent

Science provides us with the ability to make sense of all that surrounds us, preparing us for life beyond the classroom. Studying science allows us to develop our thinking skills, improves our ability to solve problems and can opens doors to many other disciplines. 

At Hebburn Comprehensive, our Science curriculum covers the three fundamental disciplines – Biology, Chemistry and Physics, giving our pupils the skills and knowledge to understand the world around them.  

Key Stage 3 

At KS3 we follow the National Curriculum, drawing on the experience of our department and resources from the wider teaching community to develop a bespoke Scheme of Learning tailored to meet the needs of our young scientists. The course is designed to ignite enthusiasm, create awe and wonder, and build solid foundations to allow a seamless transition into the GCSE course. 

Key Stage 4 

Promoting enthusiasm and engagement regardless of the route post16, is a priority for us in Science. We want to encourage our future doctors and engineers are much as we want to instil a lifelong interest in the world around for our pupils who chose a different path when they leave us.  

At KS4 we follow the AQA specifications https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/gcse 

Set 1 – 3 study GCSE triple award (GCSE Biology – 8461, GCSE Chemistry – 8462 and GCSE Physics – 8463)  

Set 4 – 7 study GCSE double award (GCSE Combined Science Trilogy – 8464)  

Both routes allow pupils to develop their scientific understanding within each specialism, focusing on working scientifically, developing their maths skills and provides many opportunities to work practically.  

Year 7

(Modules, Topics)

Cycle 1

Introducing Science 

Physics – Forces 

Scientific literacy   

Cycle 2

Chemistry – Particles 

Biology – Cells  

Physics – Solar system and beyond 

Scientific literacy 

Cycle 3

Chemistry – Rocks and Earth’s structure 

Biology – Reproduction 

Red Cross First aid 

Cycle 4

Physics – Heating and Cooling/more forces 

Chemistry – Separating mixtures 

Red Cross First aid 

Year 8

(Modules, Topics)

Cycle 1

Recovery curriculum  

Chemistry – Earth  

Physics – Space 

Physics – Energy  

How Science Works 

Cycle 2

Biology – Reproduction 

Physics – Floating and sinking 

Biology – Gas exchange 

Cycle 3

Physics – Moving by force 

Chemistry – Atoms 

Biology – Respiration   

Cycle 4

Chemistry – Chemical reactions 

Physics – Electrical circuits 

Physics – Light & sound 

Year 9

(Modules, Topics)

Autumn

Recovery curriculum 

Reactions  

Global warming  

 Genes and evolution  

How Science Works  

Spring

AQA Activate 1 

Biology – 9. Ecosystems 

(interdependence) 

 

 

AQA Activate 2 

Biology – 9. Ecosystems. 

(Respiration and photosynthesis) 

Cycle 3

AQA Activate 2 

Chemistry – 6. Reactions. 

(chemical energy) 

AQA Activate 2 

Chemistry – 7. Earth  

(Earth’s resources) 

Key stage 3 review 

Cycle 4

Introducing AQA GCSE Science 

Biology: 

B1 Cell structure and transport 

B2 Cell division 

Chemistry: 

C1 Atomic Structure  

C2 The Periodic Table 

Physics: 

P1 Conservation and dissipation of energy 

Year 10

(Modules, Topics) 

Cycle 1

AQA GCSE Triple award 10H1-3: 

Biology: 

B4 Organisation   

B6 Preventing and treating disease 

Chemistry: 

C13 The Earth’s atmosphere 

C4 Chemical Calculations 

Physics: 

P7 Radioactivity 

Cycle 2

AQA GCSE Triple award 10H1-3: 

Biology: 

B7 Non-communicable diseases 

B8 Photosynthesis 

Chemistry: 

C5 Chemical changes  

Physics: 

P8 Forces in balance 

P9 Motion 

Cycle 3

AQA GCSE Triple award 10H1-3: 

Biology: 

B9 Respiration 

B10 The human nervous system 

Chemistry: 

C6 Electrolysis 

C7 Energy changes 

Physics: 

P9 Motion 

P10 Force and motion 

P11 Force and pressure 

PAPER 1 MOCK 

Cycle 4

AQA GCSE Triple award 10H1-3: 

Biology: 

B11 Hormonal coordination 

 Chemistry: 

C8 Rates and equilibrium 

Physics: 

P12 wave properties 

P13 Electromagnetic waves 

Cycle 1

AQA GCSE Combined Science 10H4-7: 

Biology: 

B4 Organisation   

B6 Preventing and treating disease 

Chemistry: 

C11 The Earth’s atmosphere 

C4 Chemical Calculations 

C5 Chemical changes 

Physics: 

P7 Radioactivity 

Cycle 2

AQA GCSE Combined Science 10H4-7: 

Biology: 

B7 Non-communicable diseases 

B8 Photosynthesis 

Chemistry: 

C6 Electrolysis 

C7 Energy Changes 

Physics: 

P8 Forces in balance 

P9 Motion 

Cycle 3

AQA GCSE Combined Science 10H4-7: 

Biology: 

B9 Respiration 

B10 The human nervous system 

Chemistry: 

C8 Rates and equilibrium 

Physics: 

P9 Motion 

P10 Force and motion 

P11 Force and pressure 

PAPER 1 MOCK

Cycle 4

AQA GCSE Combined Science 10H4-7: 

Biology: 

B11 Hormonal coordination  

Chemistry: 

C9 Crude oil and fuels 

C10 Chemical analysis 

Physics: 

P12 wave properties 

P13 Electromagnetic waves 

Year 11
(Modules, Topics)

Autumn

AQA GCSE Triple award 11H1-3: 

Biology: 

B10 The human nervous system 

B11 Hormonal coordination 

B12 Homeostasis in action 

B13 Reproduction 

B14 Variation and evolution 

Chemistry: 

C9 Crude oil and fuels 

C10 Organic reactions  

C11 Polymers  

Physics: 

P9 Motion 

P10 Force and motion 

P11 Force and pressure  

PAPER 1 MOCK  

Spring

AQA GCSE Triple award 11H1-3: 

Biology: 

B15 Genetics and evolution 

B16 Adaptations, interdependence, and competition 

B17 Organising and ecosystem 

B18 Biodiversity and ecosystems 

Chemistry: 

C12 Chemical analysis  

C13 The Earth’s Atmosphere 

C14 The Earth’s resources 

C15 Using our resources  

Physics: 

P12 wave properties 

P13 Electromagnetic waves 

P14 Light 

P15 Electromagnetism 

P16 Space 

PAPER 2 MOCK  

Summer

AQA GCSE Triple award 11H1-3: 

All 3 subjects: Revision  

Autumn

AQA GCSE Combined Science 11H4-7: 

Biology: 

B10 The human nervous system 

B11 Hormonal coordination 

B12 Reproduction 

B13 Variation and evolution 

Chemistry: 

C9 Crude oil and fuels 

C11 The Earth’s Atmosphere 

C10 Chemical analysis 

Physics: 

P10 Forces and motion 

P11 Wave properties 

PAPER 1 MOCK  

Spring

AQA GCSE Combined Science 11H4-7: 

Biology: 

B14 Genetics and evolution 

B15 Adaptations, interdependence, and competition 

B16 Organising and ecosystem 

B17 Biodiversity and ecosystems  

Chemistry: 

C12 The Earth’s resources  

Review all PAPER 2  

Physics: 

P12 Electromagnetic waves 

P13 Electromagnets 

Review all PAPER 2  

PAPER 2 MOCK  

Summer

AQA GCSE Combined Science 11H4-7: 

All 3 subjects: Revision  

We have developed our assessment model to ensure we can address gaps in learning and identify misconceptions in a timely fashion. Each unit of work has formative assessment built into every lesson allowing pupils to reflect on their learning and to develop their understanding. A levelled written task and a summative end of topic test is used to inform future planning and to tailor a programme of ‘feedforward’ allowing pupils to address areas of weakness 

Key Stage 3 

In Y7 pupils arrive with varying background experiences in Science. Therefore, we issue all pupils with a baseline data assessment within the first two weeks. The data from this allows us to plan our curriculum to ensure that by the end of Y7, all pupils have the skills and the knowledge to progress.  

Each term our pupils in key stage 3 will complete a summative assessment in each topic they study (3 or 4 each term). At the end of the academic year, pupils sit a formal assessment as a review of the entire year. 

Key Stage 4 

As pupils move through the GCSE course, they complete at least 1 summative assessment in each topic they study, these topics vary in length so pupils may be assessed a number of times in a larger topic.  

 

At the end of year 10, pupils will sit a mock exam to assess progress across paper 1. This graded inline with the national agreed boundaries from AQA. 

In year 11, pupils will sit a further paper 1 mock exam in November and a paper 2 mock exam in February. These are again graded inline with the nationally agreed boundaries from AQA. 

Biology  

Biologists are scientists who study living organisms. With degree-level or equivalent qualifications, biologists can work in many fields, including the biotechnology industry, food technology, medical research, education, agriculture and conservation. There are also openings for laboratory assistants and technicians. 

Biologists can work in the pharmaceutical industry developing and testing new drugs. Biologists investigate the effects of a disease on the body and how the body responds.  

Breweries, dairies, large food-processing and retailing firms all recruit biologists at both technician and graduate level. Food processing has become more and more complex, and new techniques are being developed all the time. Biologists can work in agrochemical and fertiliser industry finding ways to protect crops from pests and disease, and to improve yields. Government-funded research establishments employ biologists at all levels. For example, Defra (the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs), the Food Standards Agency, Forensic Science Service and Forest Research, part of the Forestry Commission.

Environmental consultancy offers graduates of biological sciences the opportunity to work for clients on issues such as water pollution, waste management, ecological management, land contamination and emission monitoring 

The NHS offer many opportunities for biologists include working in a hospital medical laboratory in an area such as: 

  • immunology – studying the defence mechanisms of the body 
  • histopathology – the study of tissue samples 
  • haematology – the study of blood. 

A biological scientist needs: 

  • a high standard of numeracy and problem-solving skills 
  • good powers of observation 
  • a careful approach to practical work and accuracy when recording/reading results 
  • patience and persistence 
  • curiosity and an interest in living things! 

Chemistry 

Chemistry is about what substances are made of, how they interact and how they affect our lives. Chemists can work in many areas – industry, the community, medicine or education. Most opportunities require degree-level qualifications, but it is possible to enter some career areas with lower-level qualifications. 

The results of work done by chemists are all around us. Detergents, plastics, packaging, the materials our clothes are made of, petrol, paints… these are just a few examples of the everyday products we use without giving much thought for the chemists involved in their development. Chemists also work on environmental issues and are at the forefront of creating new medicines. As scientific knowledge is constantly changing, chemists have to keep up to date through continuing professional development.

Chemistry is a challenging and exciting career for those who: 

  • can work in a team 
  • can communicate well with people from a range of professional backgrounds 
  • think logically 
  • are creative 
  • have analytical skills 
  • are persistent and can pay attention to detail. 

Physics  

An understanding of physics helps us to work out how and why things behave as they do, and is vital to developments in the modern world. The majority of opportunities require study to degree level, or beyond, but there are some technician-level jobs for those with qualifications at a lower level. 

From space science to nanophysics, from medical treatments to mobile phones, physics makes an impact on virtually every area of our lives. Studying physics offers a challenging but rewarding route to understanding the universe.

When looking at problems or new developments, physicists normally work closely with scientists from other disciplines, and with engineers. Physicists may work for very small companies or for large multi-national organisations.

A physicist’s work may involve: 

  • developing theories 
  • devising models and simulations 
  • organising and conducting tests and experiments 
  • writing up observations and findings in reports or scientific papers 
  • presenting findings at meetings and conferences.