The intent of the science curriculum at St Luke’s C of E School is to develop students that are curious and passionate about understanding and explaining their world through Science. In addition to research that underpins teaching and learning at St Luke’s, we have also ensured our curriculum design is evidence-based, having been influenced by the work of Daisy Christodoulou, Kirkschner and Hendrick, Greg Ashman and the application of various cognitive science theories to the teaching of Science on COGsci sci website.
Our curriculum encourages St Luke’s students to live life to the full by:
- Taking responsibility to develop their knowledge and understanding of scientific phenomena and applying their knowledge to a range of different scenarios.
- Achieving their best through effectively communicating their scientific ideas, both in writing and orally, becoming strong readers and mathematicians in science, so they can access information outside the taught curriculum and having a choice to studying science beyond GCSE. We expect students to use specialist terminology with confidence, accuracy and precision and develop excellent practical science skills.
- Inspiring hope by taking all opportunities to develop skills offered through enrichment and develop curiosity, awe and wonder, qualities we believe are needed to be successful in our modern innovative society.
- Showing respect for differing ideas by evaluating and questioning the validity of the science presented to them.
- Taking responsibility to develop the resilience and independence needed to make progress in their studies, understanding where things have gone wrong having the patience to put them right.
The Science department caters for the needs of all students. Teachers know each student well and adapt how they implement the curriculum to support everyone to achieve. We encourage all students to participate fully in lessons by asking and answering questions and practising their skills via practical activities. We actively remove any barrier students may have and encourage ambition. We challenge students through the setting of high expectations and provide support where required, using models to support understanding.
The intent of our curriculum is implemented through four guiding principles:
- Securing and developing substantive knowledge – studying a range of ‘big picture’ topics that include the key facts, concepts and phenomena that are essential to a good grounding in science
- Developing disciplinary skills – practical skills enabling students to know about how scientists work and how science knowledge is created, verified and tested.
- Applying knowledge – be able to apply the knowledge gained to new and varied scenarios and evaluate what is presented.
- Knowing student starting points at each Key Stage and thereby ensuring knowledge is retained through the cyclical implementation of key ideas and regular retrieval practice to support the development of long-term memory.
At Key Stage 3, we build on the Key Stage 2 topics, which include; plants, animals, properties of materials, light, sound, electricity, evolution and inheritance, earth and space. We use this knowledge by focussing discretely on the in-depth development of key scientific concepts in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. We apply knowledge through a range of practical and theoretical opportunities in order to inspire students to be inquisitive about how their world works. We encourage students to bring their own ideas to lessons and so we can develop these through cognitive conflict and discussion and challenge misconceptions.
At Key Stage 4, we use the understanding of key concepts learnt in Key Stage 3 to develop specialist knowledge across a greater range of scientific phenomenon and skills to fulfil the requirements of the Edexcel specification. Towards the end of Key Stage 4, some students will use their expertise to follow three single sciences and particularly prepare for a science education beyond GCSE and careers in STEM.
Our curriculum is supported and enriched by clubs, activities and opportunities in enrichment week and include competitive opportunities offered across the TWMAT and in the Science community, such as the EDF challenge.
Science at St Luke’s is aligned to TWMAT which ensures we assess students and monitor progress in a collaborative and impactful way. In addition, St Luke’s Science scholars will leave us with an understanding of a range of scientific ideas and the ability to explain the world around them. They will be able to make informed decisions about their future and their sustainable role within it. They will understand the role that science plays in the world and its potential for solving a number of global problems. We are proud of the positive progress our students make and hope that an increasing number will go on to study science in further education. We hope that some St Luke’s students will use their Scientific acumen to contribute to local, regional and national science ideas and agenda.
St Luke’s is a wonderful place; is a school full of staff who are dedicated to improving the life chances of every student that attends the school.
Kealey Sherwood, Headteacher