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Curriculum Statement: Chemistry


"Every great and deep difficulty bears in itself its own solution. It forces us to change our thinking in order to find it" - Neils Bohr


The knowledge and skills that pupils will gain


The knowledge and skills that a pupil will gain in chemistry are based on the ability to analyse a problem and suggest solutions through investigation. Students have opportunities to deepen scientific knowledge and instil curiosity throughout their time at school enabling them to contribute to the changing world around them. Working scientifically is embedded in all three science strands so that students can develop scientific thinking, experimental skills, analyse and evaluate and use the correct terminology to express their ideas. However, the study of chemistry will also allow pupils to acquire and gain new knowledge about the role and importance of chemistry in the 21st century.


Curriculum features: continuity, progression and sequencing


The year 9 chemistry curriculum is designed to ensure students studying GCSE Chemistry have a thorough grounding in the fundamental concepts covered at KS4. In year 9, ‘How Science Works in Chemistry’ is an underlying theme, with the study of ‘Acids and Alkalis’, ‘Matter’, ‘Chemical Patterns’ and ‘Chemical Reactions’. At KS4, the chemistry department follows the AQA syllabus, allowing us to deliver a course which offers challenge to students of all abilities and backgrounds, irrespective of their starting point. Year 10 lays the foundation of key principles in organic, inorganic and physical chemistry, extending this further in year 11. Practical activities and experiments are integral to the delivery of the course, where teachers will take every opportunity to promote active learning in the classroom. For those pupils pursuing chemistry at KS5, the Edexcel syllabus has been chosen as a stimulating and challenging course. ‘A’ Level Chemistry is a natural extension from GCSE, where year 12 builds on key principles in organic, inorganic and physical chemistry, with year 13 providing an opportunity to study these disciplines at a more advanced level.    


Tradition, Excellence, Character: Co-Curriculum enrichment


The chemistry department prides itself in the tradition of having a student led society, where pupils are encouraged to pursue their passion in the world of chemistry.  Debate is encouraged, furthering their ability to communicate their ideas with others, enhancing character through discussion and respect for conflicting opinions. Students have the opportunity to demonstrate excellence by entering a range of National Competitions such as the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge and taking part in relevant trips and visits.