Science – Key Stage 3 Adapted National Curriculum
The national curriculum for science aims to ensure that all pupils:
- develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics.
- develop understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science through different types of science enquiries that help them to answer scientific questions about the world around them.
- are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future.
The principal focus of science teaching in key stage 3 at Treloar’s follows the National Curriculum and focuses on the development of a deeper understanding of a range of scientific ideas in the subject disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics, linking background knowledge and experience to new topics. In the case of new concepts an emphasis on student participation and first-hand experience is the main focus of all learning, we have opportunities to learn outside in the Treloar’s grounds making use of our own gardens and semi-wild places including our own pond. Active participation in the collection and observation of animals, plants and insects found nearby gives students new and immersive experiences. In the case of topics not accessible to first hand experiences in class we use a variety of media including clips, photographs and sound tracks to enhance the learning experience.
Examples of these ideas are the links between the structure and parts of a plant or animal and their functions – how they help them to survive and how well they are adapted to their habitat or environment. We are able to grow plants from seed, examine the structure of plants using microscopes linked to the whiteboard in class.
The particulate model of matter is introduced helping to build an understanding of the properties and interactions of matter in all its forms including the differences between solids, liquids and gases – with opportunities to melt ice, evaporate water and “capture” gases in balloons.
Pupils are shown how to work objectively, modifying explanations to take account of new evidence and ideas and subjecting results to a critical review, making suggestions of how to improve and draw their own conclusions.
The Key Stage 3 curriculum is broad and adaptable to a meet a wide range of cognitive abilities.
Key topics include:
Subject content – Biology
Structure and function of living organisms
- Cells and organisation
- The skeletal and muscular systems
- Nutrition and digestion
- Gas exchange systems
Material cycles and energy
- Cellular respiration
Interactions and interdependencies
- Relationships in an ecosystem
Genetics and evolution
- Inheritance, chromosomes, DNA and genes
Subject content – Chemistry
The particulate nature of matter
- Atoms, elements and compounds
- Pure and impure substances
- Chemical reactions
- The Periodic Table
- Earth and atmosphere
Subject content – Physics
- Calculation of fuel uses and costs in the domestic context
- Energy changes and transfers
- Changes in systems
Motion and forces
- Describing motion
- Pressure in fluids
- Balanced forces
- Forces and motion
- Observed waves
- Sound waves
- Energy and waves
- Light waves
Electricity and electromagnetism
- Current electricity
- Static electricity
- Physical changes
- Particle model
- Energy in matter
- Our Sun as a star