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KS3 Science

Department: KS3 Science (Year 7 & Year 8)
Our Curriculum Aims:

  • Developing scientific curiosity and highlighting the societal importance of science. 
  • Development of core scientific and analytical skills as well as scientific literacy. 
  • Ensuring a firm knowledge and skills base for the transition to Key Stage Four (GCSE).

The Department Subject Achievement Map identifies the skills and the nature of the knowledge needed to progress in the subject from year 7-8. The Subject Achievement is a document for staff and can be found in the O-365 folder Curriculum – Curriculum Subject Resources.

For each topic studied in Year 7-8, Topic Descriptor Sheets detail the knowledge and skills needed to progress in that particular topic. Topic Descriptor Sheets can be found in pupils’ books at the beginning of each new topic, and they are also available electronically on O-365 STU Science.

Key Stage Three Curriculum Overview

Year 7

  Name of topic Key Content of the Topic Assessment points

HT 1

Unit 1:
cience Skills

  • Working safely in the laboratory 
  • Making observations and recording measurements 
  • Scientific diagram drawing 
  • Designing valid scientific investigations (a fair test) 
  • Presenting data and drawing conclusions
  • Considering errors in an investigation

End of Topic Test Y7 Science Exam

HT 2

Unit 2:
Cells & Living things

  • Living or not? You decide! What defines a living thing? 
  • Classification & using keys 
  • Vertebrates and Invertebrates 
  • Fungi, plants, bacteria and protoctista
  • Introduction to microscopy, using a microscope to view cells 
  • Plant and animal cells, specialised cells and their functions 
  • How cells become tissues, organs, organ systems and organisms

End of Topic Test Y7 Science Exam

HT 3

Unit 3:
Energy & Electricity

  • Different energy forms & energy transfers
  • Energy from foods Sources of energy, renewable & non-renewable 
  • The laws of charge 
  • Electrical circuits, conductors and insulators 
  • What is current? 
  • What is voltage? 
  • Electrical safety 
  • Electroplating objects

End of Topic Test Y7 Science Exam

HT 4

Unit 4:
Particles

  • Properties of materials 
  • The Particle Model – a Scientific Theory 
  • Changes of state 
  • Air pressure & expansion of gases 
  • Expansion of solids
  • Calculating density of regular and irregular solids

End of Topic Test Y7 Science Exam

HT 5

Unit 5:
Solutions

  • Soluble or insoluble substances, and factors affecting solubility
  • Coloured solutions 
  • What is meant by a pure substance? 
  • Measuring melting and boiling points 
  • Do all substances follow the solid-liquid-gas pattern on heading? 
  • Separating mixtures using different practical techniques

End of Topic Test Y7 Science Exam

HT 6

Unit 6:
Reproduction & Adaptations

  • Sexual & asexual reproductions 
  • Maturation (puberty) in humans 
  • Male and female reproductive systems 
  • Fertilisation, development of the embryo, birth and parental care 
  • Flowering plants – pollination & fertilisaton 
  • Methods of seed dispersal Investigating germination
  • Considering habitats, and seasonal variations 
  • How organisms are adapted to their environment 
  • Investigating behaviour in woodlice

End of Topic Test

Due to timing, this topic is not assessed as part of the Y7 Science Exam

ALL 
HTs

CASE & associated investigations

Throughout Year 7, your son will carry out multiple investigations to help him apply his scientific knowledge and gain confidence with interpreting and analysing data. These are important skills needed at GCSE. He may also receive lessons from the CASE (Cognitive Acceleration through Scientific Education) program. These lessons help him to develop logical thinking skills and learn key scientific terminology and techniques.

Feedback in CASE lessons and following investigation tasks

Each unit varies slightly in length depending on the content covered and skills being developed. Units are typically taught in the order shown above. However, there may be some variation if a class has more than one teacher. The Y7 Science Exam will take place in June 2022.

Year 8

  Name of topic Key Content of the Topic Assessment points

HT 1
&
HT 2

B1:
Environment

  • Collecting data on habitats and living organisms 
  • The importance of sampling 
  • Food chains & food webs 
  • Interdependence – how populations depend on each other
  • Predator-Prey relationships 
  • Representing data in pyramids of number and pyramids of biomass
  • The effect of toxins and bioaccumulation in food chains

End of Topic Test Y8 Science Exam

HT 1
&
HT 2

C1:
Elements & Compounds

  • Elements & the Development of the Periodic Table 
  • How elements combine to form compounds 
  • Naming compounds, formulae and notation 
  • Metals vs. non-metals 
  • Revisiting Particle Theory & changes of state (from Y7)

End of Topic Test Y8 Science Exam

HT 1
&
HT 2

P1:
Forces & Motion

  • Examples of forces, and how force is measured 
  • Measuring and calculating Speed 
  • Friction: friend or foe? 
  • Investigating friction 
  • Balanced and unbalanced forces 
  • Terminal velocity 
  • Moments

End of Topic Test Y8 Science Exam

HT 3
&
HT 4

B2:
Muscles & Bones

  • The skeleton, structure & functions 
  • Bones, strength, length and structure 
  • Types of joints 
  • Muscles 
  • Investigating muscle endurance

End of Topic Test Y8 Science Exam

HT 3
&
HT 4

C2: Minerals, Metals & Extraction

  • Minerals and their composition
  • The importance of economic ore minerals and the uses of the metals that they yield
  • Investigation to identify mineral using tests 
  • Rock types and their classification 
  • Extracting lead, iron and copper from their oxides 
  • Reactivity of Group I and Group II metals 
  • Deriving the Reactivity Series of Metals 
  • Displacement Reactions

End of Topic Test Y8 Science Exam

HT 3
&
HT 4

P2: Heat Transfer

  • Heat & Temperature 
  • Conduction in solids, good and poor conductors 
  • Convection 
  • Radiation Investigating heat loss 
  • Energy efficient homes 
  • Revisiting evaporation (from Y7)

End of Topic Test Y8 Science Exam

HT 5
&
HT 6

B3: Food & Digestion

  • Why do we need to eat, exploring food labels and a balanced diet and understanding the effects of an unbalanced diet 
  • Testing food samples for carbohydrates, protein and fat 
  • Teeth 
  • The role of the Digestive System
  • Digestive enzymes and absorption 
  • Excretion, egestion and kidney structure & function

End of Topic Test Y8 Science Exam

HT 5
&
HT 6

C3: Rates of Chemical reaction

  • Classifying reactions as fast or slow 
  • Investigating the effect of surface area 
  • Investigating the effect of temperature 
  • Investigating the effect of concentration of solution
  • The role of catalysts

End of Topic Test Due to timing, this topic is not assessed as part of the Y8 Science Exam

HT 5
&
HT 6

P3: Light & Sound

  • Properties of light 
  • Investigating reflection, scattering, refraction and dispersal of white light into a range of colours 
  • Effect of colored filters on white light, how do objects appear in different coloured light 
  • Properties of sound 
  • Sound and hearing, the human ear

End of Topic Test Due to timing, this topic is not assessed as part of the Y8 Science Exam

Each unit varies slightly in length depending on the content covered and skills being developed. Units are typically taught in the order shown above. However, there may be some variation if a class has more than one teacher. The Y8 Science Exam will take place in June 2022.

What can parents do to support their sons? 
Look at your son’s Science exercise book(s) on a regular basis, talk to him about his work, confidence and progress in each topic. Encourage him to be pro-active and act on feedback from his teacher(s). The Topic Descriptor Sheets are useful quick-check guides to the teaching content being covered, and skills your son is developing. 

  • Encourage him to be organised with independent study tasks or revision for assessments, and please encourage him to take pride in his presentation. If he is asked to research a topic, then he must list the sources of information that he has used at the end of the piece of work. 
  • Take opportunities to relate what your son has learnt in his Science lessons to the world around him. For example, you could discuss topical aspects of Science which are in the news, watch relevant documentaries together and visit museums. 
  • If you have any questions or concerns about your son’s work or overall progress, please do not hesitate to contact his Science teacher(s) or Mrs Hill (Head of KS3 Science).

Recommended Revision Guide
The Collins KS3 Science All-in-One Revision and Practice book is available, through ParentPay. This book is highly recommended and excellent value for money. It is a revision guide with an excellent set of notes, and workbook with answers in the back. You could even take the answers out of the back and quiz your son! N.B. There is some content in this book that AGSB pupils do not cover at KS3, but your son can still broaden his knowledge by looking at those sections which will be covered at KS4.

Additional Support Available for KS3 Students
All pupils can access practice exam questions and additional revision materials are also available in topic folders on O-365 STU Science. They also have access to online textbooks via their Kerboodle log-in, these are recommended for consolidation and revision. In addition, there is a weekly “drop-in” session to support pupils on a one-to-one basis. Pupils can receive help with a current topic, on-going revision or help to catch-up following absence.

From Year 9 Onwards
Pupils are taught separate Science subjects; Biology, Chemistry and Physics, and also have the option to take Geology at GCSE. Please see these departments’ individual Curriculum Guides for further details.