What is SCIENCE?

Science is a way of understanding the world around us and our place in the universe, which has been built over time through tested methods. We teach the key concepts, methods and processes and how they are used in Science.

Scientific inquiry, practical and life skills are rooted in the Science curriculum in unison with the whole school framework and feed into all subjects, topics and activities, thus facilitating the holistic development of the pupils. Learning Science in its broadest sense and the laws governing nature foster sustainability awareness and help students understand our connections to the natural world and develop as all-round individuals.

Why do we teach SCIENCE at Sunnydown?

We develop Scientific knowledge and thinking through the three main disciplines of Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Science promotes evidence based thinking and rational thinking. The scientific approach helps students to become independent thinkers and collaborative learners.

Linking knowledge and skills allows the students to apply their learning to everyday life and their own personal experiences. Through relating the key knowledge informed by the National Curriculum to our immediate setting we enhance the development of our students’ cultural capital.

Our broad and personalised Science curriculum empowers all students to grow appreciation of Science and its applications in life, to attain and retain scientific knowledge and develop lifelong practical skills. Pupils learn through engaging and well-structured activities that nurture enjoyment and accelerate achievement, and thus make excellent progress throughout KS3 and KS4. While respecting everyone’s contribution, we enable students to meet their full academic potential.

Above all we seek to develop a sense of excitement, wonder and curiosity through an investigative approach.

How do we teach SCIENCE at Sunnydown?

All years cover laboratory safety at the beginning of the autumn term.

In years 7 and 8, the students have two one hour lessons per week and in year 9, three one hour lessons per week. The KS3 curriculum is designed to engage students through the fundamental concepts of Biology, Chemistry and Physics through experimentation guided by theory.

In KS4 students have four one hour lessons per week working towards sitting the GCSE exam at the end of the summer term in Year 11. We follow the AQA Trilogy specification where the students have to complete a series of required practicals which aids our ethos of learning through experimentation recognising the importance of knowledge as well as skills.

This builds upon our KS3 learning as it takes the key concepts further developing the students' understanding of how and why things happen the way they do in Science.

Our Science curriculum promotes the development of inclusive learning opportunities tailored around the pupils’ needs offering activities that are differentiated, relevant and engaging for our cohort of students.

We assess at the end of each topic using standardised tests to monitor individual progress over a larger sample size. In KS4 we use Exampro pre-made assessments for the Science Trilogy course. At the end of each topic we do a feedback session where content is re-visited before the students attempt the test. The students are encouraged to use their access arrangements to ensure that it is their science knowledge being assessed and not hindered by any additional need.

How does SCIENCE change at KS4?

At the end of KS3 the students complete the bridging unit AQA biomimicry to further develop their understanding of where scientists can find their inspirations from in developing their scientific theories. It also helps to show that Science is everywhere and that one idea from nature can help push scientific theory forward.

They are split into two pathways, Pathway 1 and Pathway 2, where some of the students in Pathway 2 may suit the higher paper and some in Pathway 1 may do the entry level course.

Which exam board syllabus do we study at KS4?

At KS4 we study the double award AQA trilogy syllabus with a view to the students sitting the 6 examinations at the end of the summer term in Year 11.

Details can be found here:



Curriculum Plans