Key Stage 3  Key stage 4
  Year 7 Year 8 Year 9 Year 10 Year 11
Autumn 1 MRS GREN, Classification. Substances and Particles and the Atom. Forces Physical Properties, Hooke's Law, Pressure, Cells and Variation Electricity and magnetism, cells and variation, reactions Periodic Table, Separating Mixtures, Organisation, Force and Motion Particle model of matter, atomic structure, quantitative chemistry, Infection and Response
Autumn 2 Cells, Isotopes and Electronic Structure. Force and Motion Cells and variation, chemical formula, speed distance time graphs Reactions, key concepts of chemistry Force and Motion, Energy 1, Bioenergetics, Bonding structure and the properties of matter Infection and response, ecology, variation and evolution
Spring 1 Biodiversity and ecology, Periodic Table, Newton's laws Humans and health, reactions, energy Key concepts of Biology and Physics, Atomic Structure Bonding structure and the properties of matter,Energy 2, Non communicable diseases Using resources, Organic Chemistry, Homeostasis and Response, Chemistry of the Atmosphere
Spring 2 Biodiversity and Ecology, Ions molecules, macromolecules and mixtures, speed/distance/time graphs Humans and health, reactions, energy Motion, Cell Biology 1, Periodic Table Chemical changes, inheritance, Chemical Analysis, Waves 1 and 2, Magnetism and Electromagnetism
Summer 1 Humans and health, Physical properties, Hooke's law Organisation, reactions, waves Force and Motion, Cell Biology 2, Separating Mixtures, Electricity 1 and 2, energy changes, variation and evolution Revision
Summer 2 Chemical Formulae and Pressure Separating mixtures, waves Energy 1, Working Scientifically Quantitative chemistry, infection and response, particle model of matter Exams


Why are we teaching a knowledge-rich curriculum; how is it different?

We think with knowledge. To enable a pupil to progress in their understanding of a concept they need to recall the previous concepts quickly and accurately. A concept such as ionic bonding requires rapid retrieval of electronic structure, the charge on the sub-atomic particles, the rules for forces between charged particles, the tendency of atoms to adjust to stable noble gas structures, the difference between metals and non-metals and a strong knowledge of the periodic table. Pupils need to be fluent in each of the components in order to explain ‘ionic bonding’.

Why are we teaching this content?

The content is carefully chosen to give pupils a strong set of foundations for learning science. In addition to carefully sequenced science knowledge there is a particular emphasis on the mathematical and literacy knowledge that is required in science; this includes investment in areas such algebra, standard form, data analysis and graphing, as well as systematic teaching of tier 3 (subject-specific) and tier 2 (high-frequency mature) vocabulary. With this knowledge, pupils will be able to not only grasp key concepts in Science but also be able to articulate this knowledge with speed and accuracy (fluency).

Why are we teaching it in this order?

A lot of time and thought has gone into the sequencing of the schemes. The design is based on pillars of scientific knowledge which build in a hierarchical manner. In chemistry for instance a lot of time is invested in particles and the structure of the atom. This then leads to electronic structure, ions, bonding etc. We purposefully interleave the pillars in order to maximise the interleaving effect (where mixing and practising several related items together allows for longer-term security of knowledge). 

What do pupils need to remember and be able to do in this subject? 

There is a fundamental core of science knowledge that pupils need to learn. This is frequently tested by low stakes quizzing strategically inserted into lessons so it is continually reviewed and the knowledge built upon. This includes the periodic table, the structure of plant and animal cells and the physics equations. All pupils will start learning this in Y7 and will be continually re-tested until Y11 with the aim that pupils are best prepared for their exams.

What methods do we use to help pupils secure this knowledge in long-term memory? 

Securing knowledge in long term memory is the vital goal of our course, in fact, it is by our definition, learning. Some examples of how we achieve this are listed below. It is crucial to note that this is not a tick list and not all of these (or perhaps any of them) will be observed in a given lesson. The science teachers will use these as appropriate to the context of what they are teaching.

  • Starter questions for each lesson that reach back to previous learning.

  • Quizzing for memory retrieval practice 

  • Summative tests that assess the domain.

  • Increasing storage strength by slowly removing scaffolding, interleaving questions from different topics and asking questions of incrementing demand.

  • Questioning in class that supports pupils in engaging in retrieval practice. This is designed in such a way as to maximise the number of pupils who think of the answer to each question (increasing ratio) by using techniques such as mini-whiteboards and cold calling.

  • Individual practice (often undertaken silently) in which pupils apply the knowledge they have learnt to problems.