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Curriculum

Key Stage 4

  • English Language and Literature
  • Maths
  • Three Baccalaureate subjects – Science, Humanities, Languages or Computing
  • Three other subjects

Every student studies the following:

English Literature and Language (4 Lessons per week)

English is one of the essential qualifications that all students should strive to achieve.   The course we offer gives students access to two qualifications – English Language and English Literature.   The best result for the two will count as the main English qualification whilst the second will count as an ‘other subject’

Maths (4 Lessons per week)

Maths is the second essential qualification.   Where students are finding the subject difficult, intervention will come into play which may limit access to other courses.

Dual Science (5 lessons a week)

All students will do a dual science qualification – this means that any grade which is achieved is doubled up and can therefore fill two of the three baccalaureate subjects.   Only the top set science group will tackle the triple award science in which each subject is counted separately – biology, chemistry and physics.

Religious Education (1 Lessons a week)

Religious education is a subject which remains compulsory on the curriculum.   Students study this course using 1 lesson a week from the beginning of year 9.   The RE grade can count as an ‘other subject’.

Physical Education / Performing Arts (3 lessons a week)

All students should take part in some physical activity in the curriculum.   The school is offering a BTEC qualification (Level 2) in either Sport or Performing Arts.   We have found that most students who want to carry on with a sporting qualification move onto BTEC Level 3 courses and so this is an ideal preparation.   The performing arts qualification has an element of dance, drama and music in it and offers an option for those who want to follow a more creative route.

Students are therefore left with two further options to give a total of  9 qualifications to be studied.   Note that one of these options has to be a baccalaureate subject – these are shown in the option boxes in yellow.

Here are the subjects which make up the options

GCSE History

The history course looks at Medicine through time (including a topic on healing the wounded in World War 1), Nazi Germany and the Cold War 1945 – 1991.   Assessment is done by taking three examination papers in the summer of year 11.

GCSE Geography

The Geography course features 2 main topics – ‘Living with the physical environment’ which looks at tectonic hazards, weather hazards, climate change, tropical rainforests, hot deserts, coasts and rivers  and ‘Challenge in the human environment’ including urban change in the UK and Brazil, the changing economic world, water and energy management.   Assessment is done by taking three examination papers in the summer of year 11.

GCSE French

The French course focuses on the four skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking.   A speaking test is carried out in school and then listening, reading and writing are tested in formal exams at the end of year 11.

GCSE German

The German course focuses on the four skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking.   A speaking test is carried out in school and then listening, reading and writing are tested in formal exams at the end of year 11.

GCSE Computing

The computing course focuses on the ability to write code .   The course is assessed using a 10 hour coursework  project and an exam at the end of year 11.

GCSE Music

This course develops students’ ability to appreciate, perform and write their own music.   It is not essential that students can already play a musical instrument but it is a distinct advantage.   Some peripatetic tuition is available but at a small cost.   The course is assessed by two recorded performances, two compositions completed in school and a listening exam.   A qualification at GCSE music will develop your independence, resilience, creativity and communication for use in further studies or apprenticeships.

GCSE Art

The course develops students’ ability to appreciate and create art.   Each student is expected to produce an extensive portfolio of evidence that includes artworks in a variety of materials, alongside written annotation.   40% of the final mark is the exam which includes a portfolio of preparation work and a final outcome produced in a 10 hour exam completed over two days.

GCSE Technology

This course develops a students’ ability to design, produce and evaluate a product.   The course will integrate aspects of Textiles and resistant materials to produce an end product.    The course is assessed through a design folder developed in school, an examination taken at the end of year 11 and a final product.

GCSE Food Preparation and nutrition

This new GCSE Food Preparation and Nutrition is an exciting and creative course which focuses on practical cooking skills to ensure students develop a thorough understanding of nutrition and the working characteristics of food materials.

Food preparation skills are integrated into five core topics: nutrition and health, food science, food safety, food choice and food provenance.   Upon completion of this course, students will be qualified to go on to further study, or embark on an apprenticeship or full time career in the catering or food industries.

GCSE Drama

The drama course develops a student’s skills in performing and appreciating live theatre.   The course is assessed through a final performance and a written portfolio which is undertaken following a 10 hour preparation period.

GCSE Photography

The course develops students’ ability to appreciate and create photography.   Each student is expected to produce an extensive portfolio of evidence including studio and site based work which shows a clear understanding of the technical aspects, experimental use of the camera and materials, alongside written annotation.   40% of the final grade is the exam which includes a portfolio of work and a final outcome produced in a 10 hour exam completed over two days.

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