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“Equipped with his five senses, man explores the universe around him and calls the adventure Science.”
Science pervades every moment of our daily lives. The Science Department at Birkdale aims to provoke curiosity in our students so they have a desire to find out how the world around them works. We want our students to explore the Universe and in doing so find awe, wonder, knowledge and joy.
We recognise that students have a range of scientific knowledge & experience and variation in their cultural capital. Irrespective of starting points, we aim to develop students’ capacity to understand the world around them by improving knowledge, skills and habits needed to become effective learners. Within our science curriculum, we seek to provide students with:
The goal of science education is not knowledge of a body of facts and theories but a progression towards key ideas which enable understanding of events and phenomena of relevance to students’ lives. We want our students to make connections between what they learn and the big ideas that are intrinsic to science.
Big ideas of science
Big ideas about science:
We explicitly teach key tier two vocabulary that is assigned to each unit to ensure that we are addressing the closing of the word gap. We develop tier 3 vocabulary throughout each unit to support learning. Both tier 2 and tier 3 vocabulary is assessed and developed with google forms quizzes as part of the homework policy. Through verbal questioning, science teachers continually check on cultural capital and ensure that contexts are based on prior experiences or students are introduced to important concepts using effective scaffolding. We provide all students with opportunities to improve their cultural capital during extra curricular activities and educational visits, such as STEM competitions, Science Live Lectures, Animal Club, Science Fiction Film Club, Garden Design & Build, Silversmithing Club & others.
Students of all abilities work towards 2 or more GCSEs in science. We have a fluid process of setting in years 8-11 to ensure that all students are able to access the right level of support where it is needed but are also pushed to achieve as highly as possible. Prior and current attainment are used to support decisions made in setting. Disadvantaged and SEND students have priority seating to allow for enhanced scaffolding and teacher assessment & feedback within work checks. We actively encourage selected disadvantaged and SEND students to opt for triple science, allowing access to this higher attaining, more comprehensive route with greater learning hours.
Arbor data with lower thresholds for groups are used to trigger enhanced parental communications.
From 2021, disadvantaged students will receive GCSE revision guides to support learning. This group will also have priority access to extracurricular intervention / revision sessions
|Science - Foundation Stage - Years 7 & 8||Science - Foundation Stage - Year 9 |
Examination Stage - Years 10 & 11
|Year 7 - 6 hours per cycle |
Year 8 - 6 hours per cycle
|Core Science (Biology / Chemistry / Physics) |
2 hours for each Biology / Chemistry / Physics in year 9, rising to 3 hours in years 10 and 11
4 hours for each of Biology / Chemistry / Physics in year 9, rising to 5 hours in years 10 and 11
|Curriculum Leader - Mr Woodley (Physics) |
Deputy Curriculum Leader - Mrs Woodley (Chemistry)
|Teacher of Biology - Mr Bennett |
Teacher of Biology - Ms Flood
Teacher Chemistry - Mr Dunning
Teacher of Physics - Mrs Monaghan
Teacher of Science - Miss Kelly
|Science Laboratory Technician - Mr Leece |
Junior Laboratory Technician - Ms Plamena Dimitrova