Science at Larches     


Science is integral in our society; for many students, this can be difficult to see but we aim to equip them with the skills and knowledge to question the world around them.  Our planet faces significant challenges, not least the impact of climate change, food production, disease and a devastating reduction in biodiversity.  We hope that the students at Larches will become well-informed members of society and be able to think critically for themselves.

Our aims:

At Larches High School in Science, we will enable pupils to:

  • Develop their scientific knowledge and skills of scientific enquiry to help better understand and answer the big scientific questions about the world around them.
  • Confidently solve problems while making informed judgements, in preparation for a happy and successful life in a society influenced by rapid scientific and technological change.
  • Gain an understanding of how scientific ideas have developed, changed historically and how science will lead the way in the future.
  • Use scientific vocabulary effectively, including the use of scientific nomenclature and units and mathematical representations. To allow students to fully understand the complexities of a problem or explain their findings.

Curriculum overview

Key Stage 3

Students in KS3 will follow the National Curriculum for Science over a three year period.  See below for the breakdown of topics covered.  They will have 4 x 45 minute lessons per week.

Key stage 4

Students in KS4 follow the AQA Trilogy GCSE scheme of work, leading to the equivalent of two GCSE grades at the end of Year 11.  Details of the topic areas covered are in the table below.  There are six examination papers in total, two each for Biology, Chemistry and Physics related units.  Required practical tasks are completed over the two year course and these may be tested during the exams.  Students have a total of 5 x 45 minute lessons per week.

Curriculum overview

Year 7 Year 8 Year 9 Year 10 Year 11
Term 1 Intro to investigation – scientific thinking, asking scientific questions


Cells – microscopy, plant and animal cells, specialised cells.



Matter – particle model, SLG, separating

Investigative skills, how to plan and carry out an investigation


Space – gravity, mass, weight, the universe, days, night, years, seasons.



Atoms – comparing elements and compounds. Introduction to the periodic table.

Genetics – variation, evolution and inheritance


Waves – light waves, sound waves, properties of waves, wave effects, uses of waves


The periodic table, trends in metals, non metals and groups. Chemical symbols of common elements

Cell biology, Cell division, Transport in cells


Atomic structure and the periodic table




Structure, bonding and the properties of matter



Homeostasis and the human nervous system


Hormonal coordination in humans


The rate and extent of chemical change




Observing and recording motion


Reproduction and variation


The development of understanding of genetics/evolution


Term 2 Electricity – basics in electrical circuits, charge, current







Earth structure and cycles





Movement – skeleton, muscles, gas exchange


Energy and electromagnets – electrical circuits, current, charge, potential difference, resistance, electrostatic



Earth resources – natural and synthetic cycles, extracting metals, recycling.



Organisms – breathing and digestion, heathy eating, understanding breathing, gas exchange and smoking


Energy – stores and systems, using formula, changes in energy power, energy transfers, work done, heating, cooling





Renewable/non renewable energy.





Digestion, enzymes

Structure, bonding and the properties of matter (cont)

Animal tissues, organs and organ systems


Plant tissues, organs and organ systems




Chemical quantities and calculations



The development of understanding of genetics/evolution (cont)


Classification of living organisms




Chemical analysis


Waves and light


Term 3 Ecosystems – plant and human reproduction



Reactions – intro to chemical reactions, metals and reactions in oxygen and water. Acids and alkalis.



Intro to forces, what are they, how do things work/move

Ecosystems – food chains/webs, ecological balance


Reactions – conservation of mass, endothermic and exothermic




Forces – drag, speed, distance and velocity time graphs, balanced and unbalanced.

Ecosystems – respiration, photosynthesis


Reactions – energy diagrams, catalysts, exploring combustion, word equations, chemical and physical changes


Forces in action – levers and pivots, moments and balance, work done, simple machines


Latter half of summer term: Start GCSE Trilogy Science course (Cell biology)

Infection and response


Particle model of matter


Chemical changes


Bioenergetics – photosynthesis and respiration


Energy changes


Atomic structure and radioactivity




Mr Andy Rogers – KS3/4 Science teacher (subject lead)

Miss Jo Grime – KS3/4 Science teacher

Mrs Natalie Rogers – KS4 Science teacher

Useful links (GCSE Bitesize) (KS3 Bitesize) (online learning/revision)