Science - Biology, Chemistry and Physics

Science - Biology, Chemistry and Physics

Director of Science: Dr Neat 

Assistant Heads of Science: Dr Chiu and Dr Haynes

Teachers: Mr Miles, Mr Thomas, Miss Dalgakiran, Mrs Ferreira, Ms James, Mr Azad, Ms Gill and Dr Hunter 

BGS Science Curriculum Intent

The BGS Science Department is committed to developing curious, independent, critical thinking and highly motivated responsible learners, setting the foundations for understanding the world through the disciplines of Biology, Chemistry and Physics.  We offer a diverse and balanced curriculum with engaging lessons and enrichment that enables outstanding progress for all pupils across all science disciplines. By building up a body of key foundational knowledge, concepts and skills, students will be able to recognise the power of evidence to rationalise and explain the world and develop a sense of excitement and curiosity about natural phenomena. They will understand how science can be used to explain, predict and analyse. At the conclusion of their school career, our students will:

  • Be confident and capable of applying their scientific knowledge to contemporary issues,
  • Make connections between scientific disciplines and
  • Be inspired to pursue post-secondary education or careers in the fields of science and engineering.

Implementation:

Teachers create a positive environment within their classrooms that enables responsible learners and reinforces an expectation that all students can achieve high standards in science.  Our whole school approach to teaching and learning of science involves the following:

·         Science will be taught in planned and sequenced topic blocks by the class teacher to have a skill and/or project-based approach where appropriate.  This is a strategy to enable the achievement of a greater depth of independent learning.

·         Through our planning, we involve problem solving opportunities that allow students to learn from mistakes, build confidence and maximise their learning. Students are encouraged to challenge themselves, be responsible learners, ask their own questions and are given opportunities to use their scientific skills and research to discover the answers.  This curiosity is celebrated within the lesson.  Planning involves teachers creating engaging lessons, often involving models and high-quality resources to aid understanding of conceptual knowledge. Teachers use precise questioning in class to test conceptual knowledge and skills and assess students regularly to identify those children with gaps in learning and offer intervention so that all students make outstanding progress.

·         Science is taught as a circular curriculum building and extending prior learning and knowledge.  As the students’ knowledge and understanding increases and they become more proficient in selecting, using scientific equipment, collating and interpreting results, they become increasingly confident in their growing ability to come to conclusions based on real evidence.

·         Working Scientifically skills are embedded into lessons to ensure these skills are being developed throughout the students’ school career and new vocabulary and challenging concepts are introduced through direct teaching. This is developed through the years at BGS, in keeping with the curriculum

·         Teachers demonstrate how to use scientific equipment and the various working scientific skills in order to embed scientific understanding. Teachers find opportunities to develop students understanding of the real world of science by referencing real world application and opportunities to visit laboratories and or workshops with experts.

·         Students are offered a wide range of extracurricular activities, trips to scientific laboratories and institutions, and visiting speakers to complement and broaden the curriculum. These are purposeful and link with the knowledge being taught in lessons.

·         Regular events such as Science week or project days allow all pupils to come off timetable to provide broader provisions and the acquisition and application of knowledge and skills.

Impact:

The successful approach at Burnham Grammar School results in a fun and engaging high quality science education that provides students with the foundations and knowledge for understanding the world. Our engagement with local industries and universities ensures that students learn through varied and first-hand experiences of the world around them.  Students have the understanding that science has changed our lives and that it is vital for the world’s prosperity. They learn the possibilities for careers in science as a result of our immediate and wider community links and industry connections and by working with professionals they have access to positive role models within the field of science. From this exposure to a range of different scientists, all students feel they are scientists, are informed and conscious of the world around them and can achieve. Students at Burnham Grammar School overwhelmingly enjoy science, and this results in confident, responsible and motivated learners with a sound scientific understanding.

CURRICULUM ENRICHMENT OUTSIDE OF LESSONS

The Science department offers a range of enrichment opportunities to students across all year groups to enhance their understanding of the curriculum and to inspire them to pursue a career in Science.

These include: 

  • School trips for all year groups to science related industries, universities and STEM competitions
  • Lonza Scientist Competition
  • Scientist of the Year Competition
  • Science fair/Big Bang Fair trip during Science Week
  • Bayer Laboratory Gene Jewellery trip Y7
  • Forensic Scientist for a day induction Y7
  • Escape form Space Project Y8
  • Science club
  • Lego robot competition
  • Biochemical Society
  • Extended Laboratory Project Y12 Chemists
  • Sixth form enrichment day at Reading University

 

Lonza Scientists competition KS4 and KS5

Burnham Grammar School is privileged to have a long-established link with a local company, Lonza Biologics Plc. The annual competition hosted by Lonza at their Slough Office is an unmissable opportunity for our students.  The selected students got to present their work to a panel of scientists and were taken round the laboratories where they experience at first hand, the real world of Science. A truly fascinating and rewarding day for them.

CITY SHAPER LEGO COMPETITION

Science club are taking part in an exciting competition, the Windsor Legoland ‘FIRST Lego League Challenge'.  The title of the challenge this year (2019) is “City Shaper”, which looks at finding the most innovative way of going forward in making our cities safer, healthier, and more sustainable places to live. The teams have to build and program a Lego robot to complete a number of missions within two and a half minutes, research different ways of learning, developing possible new solutions, discuss the technical design of their robot, and work together as a team.  

The project must involve questioning outside agencies such as local councils or universities who are researching the effects of pollutants on city living.

ELECTRIC VEHICLE CHARGING POINT

Year 11 this year have been taking part in a physics competition to design an electric vehicle charging point.  The UK wants every new car and van to be effectively zero emission by 2050. To support this, many more public charging points will be needed to meet the demand from electric vehicle (EV) users. It’s crucial that these charge point designs use space efficiently, complement existing streetscapes and are user-friendly.

This competition aims to inspire young people to understand the growing role EVs will play in the coming years and to see engineering as a creative and exciting career.  The best designs are judged on creativity, sustainability and accessibility and providing evidence for these criteria in the explanation of the design.

Young Scientist of the Year 2019

Congratulations to Katelyn Houston, Toke Emmanuel-Aine and Anurag Suresh for winning the Buckinghamshire Young Biologist, Chemist and Physicist of the Year respectively. They were awarded their certificate on the 25th November at Bucks New University where the brightest students in the county got a chance to hear from scientists who developed the calculations for the launch of the Ariane rocket amongst others, learned a little of the future of battery technology from the Faraday Institution and how to build a 3D game from the Computer scientists at Bucks New University.

A super recognition of the outstanding work of these BGS students and a really inspirational opportunity to hear from outstanding scientists across the world.

 

 

KS3 Science

KS3 Science at BGS is aimed at inspiring and motivating young and active minds.  Students will link their practical experience with scientific ideas and real-life situations with a strong emphasis on ‘Working Scientifically’.  Students follow the ‘Activate’ KS3 Science course in Year 7 and Year 8, before commencing GCSE courses in Year 9.  The Schemes of Work are designed to fully prepare and support every student on their journey through KS3 to KS4. 

Approximate course timings: KS3 Science AQA Activate Scheme of work

 

Term

 

Subject Content

 

Year 7

Autumn

Enquiry Processes (Part 1)

Forces (Part 1) speed, gravity

Matter (Part 1) particle model, separating mixtures

Spring

Organisms (Part 1) movement, cells

Electromagnets (Part 1) potential difference, current

Reactions (Part 1) acids & alkalis, metals & non-metals

Summer

Ecosystems (Part 1) interdependence, plant reproduction

Energy (Part1) energy cost, energy transfer

(Earth) (Part 1) Earth structure, universe

 

Year 8

Autumn

 

Enquiry Processes (Part 2)

Waves (Part 1) sound, light

Genes (Part 1) variation, human reproduction

Forces (Part 2) contact forces, pressure

Spring

 

Matter (Part 2) elements, periodic table

Organisms (Part 2) breathing, digestion

Electromagnets (Part 2) magnetism, electromagnets

Reactions (Part 2) types of reaction, chemical energy

Summer

 

Ecosystems (Part 2) respiration, photosynthesis

Energy (Part 2) work, heating and cooling

‘Escape from Earth’ project

 

 

Assessment:

Students are assessed at the end of each topic (see table above).  They complete a short test of approximately 30 minutes after a review lesson.  The individual topic test scores are combined and averaged over the year, to give a current attainment grade at any point in time. Students’ current attainment grades are then reported home at the various progress grade intervals throughout the year.

Baylab Visit: Making Gene Jewellery

At the start of the academic year, we took around 30 Year 7 students to the “Baylab” at Bayer in Reading.  After an initial briefing and hands-on exhibition, students were given a lab coat and safety glasses and led into the purpose built outreach laboratory. 

It was here that they carried out an extraction of their own DNA!  They were expertly led through the use of specialist chemicals, techniques and equipment in order to isolate their DNA.  Once they had completed their extraction, they were each given a pendant into which they could put their sample to take it home as a souvenir!

 

Induction Day Year 7 Forensic Scientist for the day:

In September, all year 7 students had a full day in the science department as part of their induction. The theme of the day was forensic science. The ultimate goal was to identify which suspect had committed     a murder!

After an introduction in the main hall,    students spent the day touring the different labs, spending time with different science teachers, carrying out various forensic experiments.  These ranged from chromatography through to flame tests and food tests.  There were even some interview videos of suspects to watch. Students carefully recorded all of their observations in a specially designed booklet which they were given during the introduction.   As the day went on the evidence started to mount! Could they identify the main suspect?

 

Key Stage 4

The science curriculum is taught as either the Separate Sciences or Combined Science with the latter covering almost 75% of the content of the separate sciences.  Students taking the separate sciences will be awarded individual GCSEs in the respective science subject, whilst the combined science students will be awarded a double GCSE i.e Grade 7,7 for example but will be assessed across the three science disciplines.

 

Approximate course timings

GCSE BIOLOGY: https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/gcse/biology-8461

 

Year 9

 Year 10

 Year 11

 

Autumn

 

Cell structure, transport and division

Organisation and the digestive system

Photosynthesis

 

Respiration

Genetics and evolution

Adaptation and interdependence

Organisation of an ecosystem

Biodiversity and ecosystems

 

Spring

 

Organising animals and plants

Communicable diseases

Human nervous system

Hormonal coordination Homeostasis in action

Paper 2 revision

Paper 1 revision

 

 

Summer

Preventing and treating diseases  Non-communicable diseases

Reproduction             Variation and evolution

Exam

 

 

 

GCSE CHEMISTRY:https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/gcse/chemistry-8462

 

 Year 9

 Year 10

 Year 11

 

Autumn

 

Atomic Structure

The periodic table

Structure

and bonding

Electrolysis

Energy changes

Rates and equilibrium

Chemical analysis

Using our resources

 

Spring

Crude oil and fuels

 Our atmosphere

 Organic reactions

Polymers

Paper 2 revision

Paper 1 revision

 

 

Summer

The Earth's resources

Chemical changes

Chemical calculations

Chemical analysis

Exam

 

 

GCSE Physics: https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/gcse/physics-8463

 

 Year 9

 Year 10

 Year 11

 

Autumn

 

Conservation and dissipation of energy

Energy transfer by heating

Energy resources

Electric circuits

Electricity in the home

Radioactivity

Space

 

Spring

 

Forces in balance

Motion

Molecules and matter

Wave properties

Electromagnetic waves

Paper 1 revision

Paper 2 revision

 

 

Summer

Force and motion

Force and pressure

Light

Electromagnetism

Exam

 

 

Combined Science Curriculum Timings:

Exam Board: https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/gcse/combined-science-trilogy-8464

 

Term

 

 

Combined Biology

Combined Chemistry

Combined Physics

 

Year 9

Autumn

Cell structure and transport

Cell division

 

Atomic Structure

The periodic table

 

Conservation and dissipation of energy

Energy transfer by heating

 

Spring

 Organisation and digestive system

 Organising animals and plants

 

Structure and bonding

 

Energy resources

P9 Motion

Summer

B5 Communicable diseases

B6 Preventing and treating diseases

 

Crude oil and fuels

 

 Forces in balance

 

Year 10

Autumn

 

Non-communicable diseases

Photosynthesis

Respiration

 

 Chemical changes

Electrolysis

 

Electric circuits

Electricity in the home

 

Spring

 

B10 Human nervous system

B11 Hormonal control in humans and plants

 

Energy changes

Calculations

Molecules and matter

Wave properties

 

Summer

 

Reproduction

Variation and evolution

Rates and equilibrium

 

Electromagnetic waves

Electromagnetism

 

Year 11

Autumn

 

Genetics and evolution

Adaptations, interdependence, and competition

Organising an Ecosystem

Biodiversity and ecosystems

 

Chemical analysis

The Earth's atmosphere

The Earth's resources

 

P7 Radioactivity

P10 Force and motion

Spring

 

Revision

Paper 1

Paper 2

 

Summer

 

Exam

 

AQA Scheme of Assessment

In Separate Sciences, there will be two examinations for each science subject at the end of Y11. For these reformed Science GCSE qualifications, students are required to complete between 8 to 10 required practicals per science discipline throughout the course.  The theory of practical work and How Science Works will be examined in the final written papers. Maths skills are also tested in all three science qualifications (10% of Biology exam marks, 20% of Chemistry exam marks and 30% of Physics exam marks).

Further details are available on the websites below:

Biology 8461 https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/gcse/biology-8461

Chemistry 8462 https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/gcse/chemistry-8462

Physics 8463 https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/gcse/physics-8463

Combined Science: Trilogy (8464) https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/science/gcse/combined-science-trilogy-8464/assessment-resources

In Combined Science, students will sit two examinations for each of the science disciplines at the end of Y11. Students are required to complete a total of 21 practicals throughout the course.  These are not formally assessed but the theory of practical work and How Science Works will be examined in the final written papers together with Maths skills.

 

Internal KS4 Science assessments

Year 11 students will sit assessments in all three Sciences in the Autumn and Spring terms to inform their progress grades. They will also sit formal mock examinations in December which consist of two papers per science discipline akin to the AQA exams. The assessments are composed of GCSE exam questions at the relevant demand.

Year 10 students will sit assessments in the Autumn and Summer term to inform their progress grades and the mock examinations for year 10 are in January, which consists of one paper per science discipline. The assessments are composed of GCSE exam questions at the relevant demand.

All year 9 students will sit assessments in the Autumn and Spring term to inform their progress grades and they will have internal science exams in May, which consists of one paper per science discipline. The assessments are composed of GCSE exam questions at the relevant demand.

 

Key Stage 5

Physics: EXAMINING BODY OCR B Advancing

Advancing Physics aims to give you an understanding of the world around us. We go from the forces which hold atoms together to exploring evidence for how the Big Bang occurred.  We look at the latest 3D ultrasound technology and consider the historical context of Newton’s work. In addition to computational physics we look into areas of quantum thinking that shaped the 20th century. The course is modern and relevant to today, e.g. how digital devices such as CDs, mp3s and digital cameras work, whilst also giving you the grounding in traditional physics needed for further study. For more information, look at the Advancing Physics website: http://advancingphysics.iop.org

Rather than memorising mathematical methods, Physics A-level demands that you are able to interpret problems in novel contexts and apply skills accordingly.  The level of Mathematics involved is a significant step up from GCSE Physics.  The year 12 course has topics on imaging, electricity, materials, waves and quantum behaviour and mechanics.

In year 13 the topics are exponential relationships, gravity, the Universe, ideal gases, fields and radioactivity.

OCR B Scheme of Assessment;

A Level Advancing Physics is assessed through three exam papers assessing all of the material covered in years 12 and 13. Practical coursework is no longer directly assessed but experience of practical working is essential to some exam questions, particularly in Paper 3. To gain the Practical Endorsement students need to have personally completed each of the required practical and recorded/processed/displayed/analysed the results in their lab-books.

PROGRESSION

Studying Physics at A-level will advance your problem solving abilities. The skills you will develop will be invaluable both directly and indirectly in a wide variety of careers. Physics is essential for entry into a wide range of scientific careers including astronomy, aeronautics, architecture, communications, electronics, and engineering. It is also a recommended qualification for medicine, veterinary science and for those seeking to work in business and finance.

Internal Assessment:

Year 12 students will sit assessments in November and February based on typical A level exam questions to inform their progress grades. 

They will also sit a formal mock exam in June which will consist of short multiple choice questions and longer more demanding A level questions to test their application and practical skills.  The results of this will be used to inform their predicted grades for UCAS.

Students are also assessed throughout the year with topic tests after each module of teaching.

In Y13, students will be assessed in October and November and will also sit a mock exam in February covering all of the content of the course taught up to this point. The assessments will focus on short (multiple choice) and longer more demanding A level exam questions.

 

Curriculum Map Physics:

Approximate course timings

Term

Teacher A

 Teacher B

Year 12

Autumn

Chapter 4- Materials

PAG 2.1 Young Modulus

PAG 2.2 Springs in Series and Parallel

Chapter 5- Looking Inside Materials

 

 

Chapter 1 -Imaging

PAG 6.2 Experiments with light

Chapter 3, Sensing

PAG 3.3 Maximum Power from a cell

PAG 4.1 Investigating Electrical Circuits

Chapter 2 Signalling

Spring

Chapter 1-5 Mock Exam

Chapter 8 -Motion

PAG 1.1 Acceleration Free Fall

Chapter 9- Momentum, Force & Energy

PAG 1.2 Terminal Velocity

Chapter 6 -Wave Behaviour

PAG 5.1 Wavelength with Diffraction Grating

Chapter 7- Quantum behaviour

PAG 6.1  Planck Constant

 

Summer

PAG 1.1 Acceleration Free Fall

Chapter 6-9 Mock Exam (if time)

Mock Exams June

PAG 12.1 Materials Presentation

Chapter 10 Modelling Decay

PAG 7.3 Half Life

PAG 7.2 Random Nature of Radioactive Decay

Review of Imaging, Sensing, Waves and Quantum

PAG 5.3 Using an Oscilloscope

Chapter 10 Creating Models

PAG   9.1 Charging and Discharging Capacitors

 

Review of Course

 

 

 

 Term

 Teacher A

 Teacher B

 Year 13

Autumn

 

Chapter 10 revision- Modelling Decay

Chapter 11 - Modelling Oscillations

PAG 10.1 Simple Harmonic Motion

PAG 10.2  Forced and Damped Oscillations

Chapter 12- Gravitational Fields

Chapter 13- Our Place in the Universe

Chapter 14- Simple Models of matter

PAG 8.1 Absolute Zero

PAG 8.2 Relationship between Pressure and Volume

 Chapter 15-The Boltzmann Factor

Chapter 10-15 Mock Exam

 

Spring

 

Chapter 16 -Electromagnetism

PAG 11.1  Transformers

Y13 Feb Mock Exams 1

Chapter 17- Electric Fields

Chapter 18- Looking inside the atom(if time)

Y13 Mock Exams 2

 

 

Summer

 

Chapter 19- using the Atom

PAG 7.2 Absorption of Radioactive Particles

Chapter 16-19 Mock Exam (if time)

Advance Notice paper preparation.

 

 

CHEMISTRY – Examining body OCR B (Salters)

COURSE DESCRIPTION

The Chemistry Specification B (Salters) encourages learners to develop a wide range of skills which includes learning about a wide variety of essential Chemistry content, based around different areas of the subject and then linking these ideas together. It also allows learners to become more competent as well as confident in developing practical skills, scientific methods and problem solving techniques. There is also a strong element of application of science and specifically Chemistry to areas such as the economy and wider society. The Chemistry Specification B (Salters) encourages learners to develop a wide range of skills which includes learning about a wide variety of essential Chemistry content, based around different areas of the subject and then linking these ideas together. It also allows learners to become more competent as well as confident in developing practical skills, scientific methods and problem solving techniques. There is also a strong element of application of science and specifically Chemistry to areas such as the economy and wider society.

OCR B SCHEME OF ASSESSMENT

The examinations at the end of the second year of study will assess your knowledge and understanding from units 1-10 in three written papers. Paper 1 and 2 are worth 41% and 37% of the course respectively, with the remaining 22% coming from paper 3. Paper 3 places a particular emphasis on practical skills. Chemistry is a practical subject and the development of practical skills is fundamental to understanding the nature of chemistry. A range of practical experiences is a vital part of a learner’s development as part of this course. Learners should develop and practice a wide range of practical skills throughout the course as preparation for the Practical Endorsement, as well as for the written examinations.

Approximate course timings

Term

Teacher A

Teacher B

Year 12

Autumn

Developing fuels (organic)

PAG 3

Element of Life

PAG 1 and PAG 2

Spring

Developing Fuels (energetics)

What’s in a medicine?

PAG 5

Ozone

 

Summer

Organic synthesis

PAG 6

Research project

Elements of the Sea

PAG 4

Year 13

Autumn

 

Chemical Industry

PAG 10

Polymers and Life

PAG 7

Spring

 

Developing metals

PAG 8

PAG 9

Colour by Design

PAG 12

Summer

 

The Oceans

PAG 11

Revision and Exam Preparation

Internal Assessment:

Year 12 students will sit assessments in November and February based on typical A level exam questions to inform their progress grades. 

They will also sit a formal mock exam in June which will consist of short multiple choice questions and longer more demanding A level questions to test their application and practical skills.  The results of this will be used to inform their predicted grades for UCAS.

Students are also assessed throughout the year with topic tests after each module of teaching.

In Y13, students will be assessed in October and November and will also sit a mock exam in February covering all of the content of the course taught up to this point. The assessments will focus on short (multiple choice) and longer more demanding A level exam questions.

 

BIOLOGY Examining body AQA.

COURSE DESCRIPTION

A-level Biology is a challenging, rewarding course that helps students develop skills and knowledge necessary for a successful career. Students studying Biology at this level will develop essential knowledge and understanding of different areas of the subject and how they relate to each other. Students will demonstrate a deep appreciation of the skills, knowledge and understanding of scientific methods, as well as develop competence and confidence in a variety of practical, mathematical and problem solving skills. Students will develop their interest in and passion for the subject and understand how society makes decisions about scientific issues and how biology contributes to the success of the economy and society. The course covers eight units: 1. Biological molecules 2. Cells 3. Organisms exchange substances with their environment 4. Genetic information, variation and relationships between organisms 5. Energy transfers in and between organisms 6. Organisms respond to changes in their internal and external environments 7. Genetics, populations, evolution and ecosystems 8. The control of gene expression

 

AQA SCHEME OF ASSESSMENT

The A-Level examinations will assess your knowledge and understanding from units 1-8 in three written papers. Paper 1 and 2 are both worth 35% of the A-Level course with the remaining 30% coming from Paper 3. Practical work is at the heart of Biology and is placed at the heart of the course. Practical work will be completed in lessons, with skills being assessed by teachers. These skills will be formally examined in the written examinations (15% of every paper relates to practical work). Furthermore, students who study the A-Level course will gain a separate endorsement of practical skills which are assessed by their teachers during lessons.

Approximate course timings

 Term

 Teacher A

 Teacher B

Year 12

Autumn

Biological molecules + Practical 1

Nucleic Acids

DNA Genes and protein synthesis

Cell structure + required practical 2

Transport across cell membranes + Required Practical 3 and 4 

Spring

Genetic Diversity

Biodiversity & Required Practical 6

Cell recognition and immune system

Exchange

Summer

Populations and ecosystems and Practical 12

Populations and Evolution

Mass Transport + Required practical 5

 

 Year 13

Autumn

 

Photosynthesis + Required practical 7 +8

Response to stimuli, Practical 10

Nervous coordination

Energy and ecosystems

Respiration + Practical 9 

Spring

 

Homeostasis + practical 11

Gene expression

Inherited Change

Recombinant DNA

 

Summer

 

Revision and Exam Preparation

 

Internal Assessment:

Year 12 students will sit assessments in November and February based on typical A level exam questions to inform their progress grades. 

They will also sit a formal mock exam in June which will consist of short multiple choice questions and longer more demanding A level questions to test their application and practical skills.  The results of this will be used to inform their predicted grades for UCAS.

Students are also assessed throughout the year with topic tests after each module of teaching.

In Y13, students will be assessed in October and November and will also sit a mock exam in February covering all of the content of the course taught up to this point. The assessments will focus on short (multiple choice) and longer more demanding A level exam questions.