Hellesdon High School

& Sixth Form Centre

Science

The Science department at Hellesdon high school is a vibrant, exciting place where students can develop their understanding of the world around them. 

Science Teachers - Education and experience

The Science team is a large, energetic and diverse department made up of 15 teachers and 5 technicians. Lessons are taught in one of eleven large laboratories all of which are well equipped and allow our pupils to enjoy regular practical lessons. We believe that by teaching good lessons, encouraging hard work and embedding core knowledge, all pupils are able to make good progress. Our all-through curriculum is designed so that students of all abilities make good progress in developing skills, whilst forming and maintaining robust and solid subject knowledge. There is regular spiralling of learning, where topics are regularly revisited to develop and maintain knowledge.

Useful Links

KS3:

KS4:

KS5

KS5 Biology websites:

KS5 Chemistry websites: 

KS5 Physics websites:

 

Key Stages

Key Stage 4 - Science

From Years 9 to 11 students study either AQA Combined Science Trilogy or AQA Separate Sciences. Both courses cover Biology, Chemistry and Physics with Combined Science leading to two GCSE grades and Separate Science leading to three GCSE grades. The KS4 course builds upon and develops the learning from KS3 where again the fundamental topics are studied, but to a deeper level, there is also a very big emphasis on practical skills, which were developed throughout KS3 and application of knowledge. Mathematical skills and literacy skills are developed through the course. The curriculum is bespoke and with the support and guidance from the Science department, it prepares the students very well for the rigour of the GCSE examinations.

Students who follow the AQA Combined Science Trilogy course will take six 75-minute long exams at the end of Year 11. Students who follow the AQA Separate Sciences course will take six 105-minute long exams at the end of Year 11. There is no coursework in either of the courses but pupils ae expected to participate in several required practicals.

 

Key Stage 5 - Science 

At KS5 we offer A-levels in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. All three subjects follow the AQA course and these are 100% exam based.

Biology: In A-level Biology, we further explore the processes within living organisms. The content is assessed solely via exams at the end of year 13; there are three exams in total. An endorsement of practical skills is taken alongside the A-level, which is awarded separately. These are assessed by teachers and will be based on direct observation of students’ competency across 12 practical tasks that students complete over the 2-year course.

Chemistry: At KS5 students study physical, inorganic and organic chemistry

The year 12 physical chemistry unit underpins the fundamental concepts such as atoms, compounds, molecules and equations; amount of substance; acidā€base and redox reactions; electrons, bonding and structure which goes into greater depth in year 13 with reaction rates and equilibria; pH and buffers; enthalpy, entropy and free energy; and transition elements.

The inorganic units in year 12 focus on the Periodic Table and periodicity; group 2 and group 7; along with period 3 and year 13 studying the transition metals and the reactions of ions in aqueous solution. 

The organic units in year 12 looks at analytical techniques and the homogenous series alkanes, alkenes, alcohols, and haloalkanes. This goes into greater depth in year 13 where aromatic compounds, carbonyl compounds, carboxylic acids and esters, nitrogen compounds, polymers and  organic synthesis are studied.

Physics: A-Level Physics is the study of the Universe around us and how it works. From quantum phenomena and subatomic particles, to stars and galaxies, and other topics in between. Using maths as a tool to describe what we find and practical work to confirm it, we can predict the motion of a tiny proton in a magnetic field, or the forces experienced by a person riding a rollercoaster, or the energy emitted by a star.