Strategic Lead for Science: Miss Z LeGray-Wise |

Science Curriculum

The Aims of the Science Curriculum

Our curriculum is designed to inspire a lifelong curiosity in students about themselves, the world, the universe and its mysteries. It should empower students so they can evaluate and form their own ideas about how and why things happen using critical scientific thinking. This includes the ability to engage confidently in the ever-changing technical world.
At Kirkburton we strive for a quality science education throughout our curriculum which encompasses the following aims for ALL students-

  • To install a lifelong interest and fascination about Science
  • To prepare pupils and impart knowledge/skills to enable their further study beyond KMS including preparation for greater demands of the new GCSEs
  • To empower pupils using a growth mindset and skills/knowledge gained in lessons to consolidate, apply and link ideas about Science to explain phenomena. This may well take them outside their learning ‘comfort zones’
  • To allow pupils to explore their natural curiosity about the world through the use of science inside and outside the classroom
  • To provide opportunities which give pupils experience, skills and knowledge through a varied curriculum that encompasses all Scientific disciplines and a relevance to the ever changing technical world
  • To build the demands of the curriculum from Y6-8 in line with AREX (age related expectations)
  • To design a programme of study which challenges pupils and allows them to revisit and use previous knowledge/skills in a spiral curriculum
  • To provide opportunities for the development of SMSC, literacy, oracy and numeracy skills throughout the curriculum
  • To allow pupils to assess through the different methods and track progress against the AREX allowing them to understand where and how to improve.
  • To allow pupils to take responsibility for their own learning and progress in science inside and outside of the classroom
  • To build pupils resilience and give them the confidence to challenge their knowledge and understanding.

Science is one of the STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Maths and Engineering) we promote the study of science as a major career path for all pupils.

We study biological, chemical and physical process, through topics which show the links between these different disciplines, using the ‘big ideas’ of science, such as particles and energy, to underpin these scientific processes. Throughout our science curriculum we try to show how science is used in the ‘real’ world. We look at aspects such as forensics, cooking, medicine and sports science. This provides pupils with a context within which these scientific processes are used as well as embedding science as a part of everyday British culture.

Pupils engage in a range of investigations, learning to; plan, carry out, analyse and evaluate experiments, as well as assessing risk to make sure their experiments are safe. They learn how scientific models and theories help to explain their observations, as well as learning how these models and theories can change as new observations are made.

Pupils learn how science has developed as a discipline over time, by studying the history of key scientific ideas and the leading British and world scientists and cultures that have contributed to this understanding. Through the curriculum we aim to develop in pupils an appreciation of the power of science to improve peoples’ lives.

Curriculum Overview

The science programme of study at K.M.S has been revised in the light of the new national curriculum 2014, the new style GCSE exams and with the collaboration of colleagues from the other schools in the Shelley College pyramid. This collaboration has helped to ensure that the curriculum at Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3 is fully covered in the most appropriate way to meet the needs of all our pupils. A greater emphasis on pupils’ numeracy and literacy skills has been built into science lessons to enhance pupils’ understanding of the scientific concepts they study, as well as helping them to communicate their ideas more clearly.

Year 6

Autumn Term

Introduction to Science
Pupils discover the vital skills needed to be successful in Y6 Science. They learn the safety rules, how to draw accurate diagrams, measuring and enquiry skills, as well as the experience using a Bunsen burner for the first time.

Human Body
Pupils visit MRS GREN and the major organs systems of the human body especially the circulatory system. They start to build a picture of hierarchy within the human body. They research and discover how to live a healthy life by exploring nutrition, smoking, alcohol and drugs/medicines.

Pupils use working scientifically skills to explore the key contact and non-contact forces they come across in everyday life. They start to use scaled force arrows to represent forces. Simple machines are also investigated.

Spring Term

Changing Materials
Pupils are introduced to particles and their arrangement in the states of matter. They recognise reversible and irreversible changes through practical work and learn important safety skills as well as common equipment names and uses.

Living Things and Their Habitats
Pupils study the importance of habitats, the language around food chains and webs and how the organisms within these habitats depend on each other. They also revisit the importance of plants, understanding their functions and structures.

Summer Term

Pupils will learn the symbols and how to draw circuits accurately. They will also experience making and designing their own circuits, and investigating how components like switches and voltage affect circuits.

Pupils understand how organisms are categorised and the features of those categories. They use this to independently construct classification keys using observable features. Pupils then recognise diversity and visit variation, adaptation and eventually evolution. They understand how scientists came up with the theories using what they have learnt about fossils previously.

Year 7

Autumn Term

Pupils use particle theory to explain and understand a variety of phenomena such as diffusion, gas pressure and solubility. They start to think about conservation of mass and understand the importance of theories to scientists.

This module will revise the electrical symbols and circuit diagrams as well as current. It introduces the different types of energy as well as the concept of density. Pupils will undertake the first GCSE practical and write it up.

Spring Term

Organisms Including Reproduction
The topic revisits hierarchy in the body and extending the ideas and skill introduced in Y6. Cells are introduced as are their structure/function and the features of eukaryotes and prokaryotes. Microscopes are also introduced.

This is a journey through reproduction; from puberty to conception and labour. The factors that affect variation will also be explored.

In this module pupils move into looking at speed and time and motion graphs as well as balance and unbalanced forces. They also carry out some exploration of relative motion. Pupils then make some discoveries about gravity and explore the differences between weight and mass as well as Space.

Summer Term

Pupils explore the role of plants in the ecosystem as well as our dependence on them for food production, the role of the insect in this and how poisons can build up.

Pupils explore the properties of acids, alkalis and neutral substances, how to make a substance neutral and how salts are formed in this process. Pupils investigate neutralisation.

Year 8

Autumn Term

Pupils develop an understanding of how gas exchange occurs and how the body is adapted for it. Pupils will link the structure of the respiratory system, gas exchange to anaerobic and aerobic respiration. Pupils will consider the impact of smoking and asthma. Pupils revisit nutrition and how the digestive system is adapted to break down food.

Light and Sound
Pupils investigate light and sound waves, developing a knowledge of sound waves traces and investigate which is the best material for reflecting sound. Pupils develop an understanding of how we hear. Pupils also investigate the reflection, refraction and dispersal of light. They explore the spectrum and how we see especially in colour.

Spring Term

Pupils revisit electrical symbols, circuit diagrams and current. They then develop this knowledge and link it to different energy stores, how thermal energy is transferred through conduction, convection and radiation. Pupils complete one of the GCSE required practicals.

Pupils use the Periodic Table to develop a knowledge of patterns and trends. They will be able to understand the difference between atoms, elements and compounds and to begin to understand how molecules are arranged and formed. Pupils will begin to explore the key words ‘ceramics’, ‘polymers’ and ‘composites’.

Summer Term

Pupils will develop an increased understanding of forces with a focus on resultant forces in 4 directions and the effects of unbalanced forces. Pupils will develop mathematical skills within science, exploring pressure in solids, and fluids. Pupils explore compression and stretching including Hooke’s law.

Plants and Ecosystems
Pupils develop an understand of the process of photosynthesis, how it occurs, the factors that affect it and how leaves are adapted to undertake it.

Pupils will develop practical skills whilst exploring the most common types of chemical reactions, exploring the concept of conservation of mass. Pupils will develop a deeper understanding of the purpose of risk assessments and construct necessary risk assessments.

Check out what is going on in British Science Week here:

What career…?

Students who succeed in science can look forward to careers in health, engineering, technological industries, academia, media and many others.



Science encourages individual to hold their own beliefs and have respect for others whose belief may differ. By its very nature it encourages pupils to question and interrogate hypothesis and formulate their own conclusions using the evidence they have available to them. Pupils through team work will be given opportunities to decide on what’s the best course for the group through discussion. Pupils also discuss how theories have changed (e.g. Atomic theory) through peer review and experimentation until they become widely held within the scientific community.

The rule of Law

Pupils are taught the need for safety rules in the laboratory and during practical’s. They are encouraged to take responsibility for their own and others safety through the use of risk assessments. They also understand that breaking the rules have consequences.

Individual Liberty

Science encourages individual to hold their own beliefs and have respect for others whose belief may differ. By its very nature it encourages pupils to question and interrogate hypothesis and formulate their own conclusions using the evidence they have available to them. Science also encourages team work and debate and allows pupils to recognise that everyones contributions are important and valid. Pupils also are encouraged take responsibility for their own learning and progress in science inside and outside of the classroom.

Mutual Respect

Pupils are encouraged to explore their natural curiosity about the world through the use of science inside and outside the classroom so they can see that living in society today means we share a common goal of responsibility for our planet and the organisms who live on it. Where appropriate to a topic, the ethical and ecological issues are discussed (e.g. bioaccumulation). Pupils learn to work collaboratively and how to cooperate with others during practical work/classwork. They must learn that everyone has their own strengths, ways of working and aspects of knowledge allowing others the room to express their views and feel listened to.

Tolerance of those of Different Faiths and Beliefs

Scientific facts remain the same no matter the culture, language or religious beliefs of individuals. Science transcends boundaries to help us prepare for a better future. Pupils are encouraged to recognise that contributions from all cultures are important, valid and needed to make sense of the world around us and universe beyond that.

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