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Year 8 Options

This page is designed to help you choose some of the courses you will follow in the next three years.

You are required to follow a ‘core’ curriculum in the following subjects: English Language, English Literature, Maths, Additional Science, Religious Studies and Physical Education. You will see therefore that you are already able to obtain qualifications in a wide range of subjects.

It is an expectation by the Government and the school that all students should achieve A*-C grades in English and Mathematics, and make strong progress in 8 subjects. Many students are also expected to achieve the Government’s English Baccalaureate standard by obtaining A*-C grades in English, Mathematics, Science, a humanities subject (Geography or History) and a modern foreign Language.

Students should therefore seriously consider the merits of selecting a humanities subject and a language alongside the core subjects when choosing their options.

Students will need to choose three subjects in addition to the core curriculum. Students should base their decisions on the following factors:
1. Enjoyment of the subject
2. Attitude to learning in the subject
3. Academic success in the subject (look at termly grades for this information)
4. Whether the subject will help with progression post 16 (6th Form, Career Paths)

Click on the titles below to open and close

Cambridge IGCSE First Language English is designed for students whose mother tongue is English.
The course allows students to:
• develop the ability to communicate clearly, accurately and effectively when speaking and writing
• learn how to use a wide range of vocabulary, and the correct grammar, spelling and punctuation
• develop a personal style and an awareness of the audience being addressed.

Students are also encouraged to read widely, both for their own enjoyment and to further their awareness of the ways in which English can be used. Cambridge IGCSE First Language English also develops more general analysis and communication skills such as synthesis, inference, and the ability to order facts and present opinions effectively.

Exam Board and Specification:
Cambridge International Examinations (CIE)
First Language English (0522)
International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE)

Topics to be studied:
• Unit 1 (Core) Reading Comprehension Examination
OR Unit 2 (Extend) Reading Comprehension Examination
• Unit 3 Writing Examination
• Unit 5 Speaking and Listening Examination (recorded)

Assessment Criteria:
100% Examination
Candidates will be assessed on their ability to:
AO1: Reading
R1 understand and collate explicit meanings
R2 understand, explain and collate implicit meanings and attitudes
R3 select, analyse and evaluate what is relevant to specific purposes
R4 understand how writers achieve effects.
AO2: Writing
W1 articulate experience and express what is thought, felt and imagined
W2 order and present facts, ideas and opinions
W3 understand and use a range of appropriate vocabulary
W4 use language and register appropriate to audience and context
W5 make accurate and effective use of paragraphs, grammatical structures, sentences, punctuation and spelling.
AO3: Speaking and listening
S1 understand, order and present facts, ideas and opinions
S2 articulate experience and express what is thought, felt and imagined
S3 communicate clearly and fluently
S4 use language and register appropriate to audience and context
S5 listen to and respond appropriately to the contributions of others.

Delivery of the Course
The way that the course is delivered depends entirely on the ability of the cohort, since the course is tailored to fit each group individually.

Progression and Possible Career Routes
A B grade in IGCSE First Language English can lead to A levels in Psychology, Sociology, History, Physics, Biology, Chemistry, and Media Studies, among others.
University degrees, Higher Apprenticeships and many job applications will often require at least a C grade in English Language (this includes IGCSE). These could lead into careers from electrical engineering, to travel journalism, to news broadcasters, to medical professionals, and a whole host of other opportunities.

It is required that all students study Mathematics at GCSE.

Our Mathematics syllabus aims to develop a positive attitude to Mathematics, including confidence, enjoyment and perseverance in the subject.

The focus in Maths has changed in recent years making problem solving key and linking topics to real-life applications.

Throughout the syllabus, there is scope for problem solving, using numerical information, tackling quantitative problems, and using statistical techniques and Information Technology. Mathematical themes include Number and Algebra; Space, Shape and Measures; Data Handling; Using and Applying Mathematics.

Exam Board and Specification:
Edexcel Mathematics A (1MA0).
Topics to be studied:
Many topics are studied in Mathematics, they fall into the Number, Algebra, Geometry, Measure and Data Handling and forms a smooth progression from topics studied in KS3.
Students will be working towards:
1. Developing fluent knowledge, skills and understanding of mathematical methods and concepts.
2. Acquiring, selecting and applying mathematical techniques to solve problems
3. Reasoning mathematically, making deductions and drawing conclusions.
4. Comprehending, interpreting and communicating mathematical information in a variety of forms appropriate to the information and context.

Assessment Criteria:
*Two exam papers taken in May/June:
*Non-Calculator Paper 1 hour 45 minutes
*Calculator Paper 1 hour 45 minutes
Each is worth 50% of the GCSE.

Delivery of the Course:
Students will be taught in six classes and set by ability. Students will receive 4 hours of lessons a week. All students are required to have their own calculator and geometry set. In Maths we work through a process of Diagnosis, Therapy and Testing. We use Personalised Learning Checklists (PLC’s) and assessment to identify strengths and gaps in knowledge and understanding and skills. This helps us to ‘diagnose’ problem areas and put interventions, targeted teaching and ‘therapy’ in place to address any gaps. Students are then tested to assess the impact of the therapy and to further diagnose areas of development.
Students are fully supported through the course with extra curricular revision and clubs on offer.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
We offer A-Level Mathematics to those who achieve an A/A* at GCSE.
Many post 16 courses require a C or better at GCSE Mathematics.

Religious Studies is a core subject which every student will take in both years 9 and 10 at GCSE level. Religion and beliefs inform our values and are reflected in what we say and how we behave. RE is an important subject in itself, developing an individual’s knowledge and understanding of the religions and beliefs which form part of contemporary society.

Religious education provokes challenging questions about the ultimate meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God, the self and the nature of reality, issues of right and wrong, and what it means to be human. It can develop pupils’ knowledge and understanding of Christianity, of other principal religions, other religious traditions and worldviews that offer answers to questions such as these.

RE also contributes to pupils’ personal development and well-being and to community cohesion by promoting mutual respect and tolerance in a diverse society.

Exam Board and Specification:
The exam board is AQA. Students will study two units (units 2 &3). Students will study 8 topics form a possible 12.

Religion and Planet Earth
• religious beliefs about the origins of life;
• religious views about the nature of Planet Earth, e.g. awe and wonder;
• religious beliefs about care and responsibility for the planet – stewardship;
• the work being done to look after the world – conservation, earth summits, international action, targets to reduce carbon emissions/greenhouse gases, sustainable development;
• problems caused by pollution, such as acid rain, oil spills, toxic chemicals and pesticides;
• effects of modern lifestyles – through emissions from cars, factories and waste, recycling;
• the debate about and the effects of climate change (global warming) – severe weather, droughts, floods, famine, destruction of crops, effect on plants and animals;
• the use and abuse of natural resources, e.g. oil;
• destruction of natural habitat, including deforestation.

Religion and Prejudice
• types of prejudice, including religion, race, colour, gender, age, disability, class, lifestyle, looks;
• the causes and origins of prejudice, including ignorance, stereotyping, scapegoating, influence of parents or media, victims of prejudice, experience;
• concepts of tolerance, justice, harmony and the value of the individual;
• religious attitudes to prejudice and discrimination;
• effects of prejudice and discrimination (including the idea of positive discrimination);
• religious responses to prejudice and discrimination by individuals, groups, society and the law;
• religious believers who have fought against prejudice, e.g. Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Desmond Tutu.

Religion and Early Life
• the concept of the sanctity of life in relation to its preservation;
• children being seen as a blessing and gift and the miracle of life;
• the issues surrounding when life begins, including at conception, development of backbone, when heart starts beating, at viability, when the baby is born;
• the issues concerning the quality of life, including severe handicaps, unwanted children, poverty and suffering;
• reasons used by religious believers for and against abortion;
• the Law and abortion, including the 1967 and 1990 Acts;
• the rights of those involved, e.g. mother, father and unborn child;
• alternatives to abortion, e.g. keeping the child; adoption and fostering;
• Pro-Life and Pro-Choice arguments and pressure groups.

Religion, War and Peace
• the causes of war;
• conflict, including examples of recent wars;
• the reasons why religious believers might go to war, including the criteria for ‘Just War’ and ‘Holy War’;
• religious believers and pacifism;
• victims of war, including refugees, those maimed;
• the concepts of peace and justice and the sanctity of life in relation to war and peace;
• organisations which help victims of war, e.g. The Red Cross, The Red Crescent;
• the work of a religious believer who has worked for peace;
• peacekeeping forces, e.g. United Nations, NATO;
• issues such as terrorism, weapons of mass destruction and nuclear proliferation;
• arguments for and against nuclear weapons, including proliferation;
• religious beliefs and teachings and modern statements about war and peace

Religious Attitudes to Matters of Life (Medical Ethics)
The concept of the sanctity of life in relation to medical research and practice in the areas of:
• Human genetic engineering, including designer babies, saviour siblings,
• Embryology,
• cloning,
• Stem cell (therapeutic);
• transplant surgery,
• Blood transfusion,
• Experiments on humans;
• The desire to have children and the ways in which this can be fulfilled through:
• Fertility treatments such as in vitro fertilisation (IVF),
• Artificial insemination by donor (AID or DI),
• Artificial insemination by husband (AIH),
• Surrogacy;
• The implications of artificial methods of reproduction for those who take part and for the children produced.

Religious Attitudes to the Elderly and Death
• The concepts of the sanctity and quality of life;
• Senior citizenship, including experience, retirement, role within the family, ageism, finance and health;
• The role of the family and community in caring for the elderly and the nature of individual
and corporate responsibility, including the work of homes for the elderly, hospitals and hospices;
• The law concerning death and euthanasia;
• The problems associated with a definition of death and the significance of the heart and the brain together;
• the use of life support machines to sustain life and the problems associated with making decisions about whether to continue life by artificial means or whether and under what circumstances a machine should be switched off and a life terminated;
• The issue of the right to self-determination in relation to euthanasia;
• The distinction between active and passive euthanasia and the contemporary debate about euthanasia;
• The comfort given by religions to the dying and the mourning

Religious Attitudes to Drug Abuse
• Religious attitudes to the use of drugs, including medically prescribed, legal and illegal drugs;
• The religious beliefs and teaching concerning the mind and body and rights and responsibilities;
• Legally accepted drugs and their effects, including caffeine, alcohol, tobacco;
• The use of the taxes raised on alcohol and tobacco for medical research and treatment;
• The reasons why illegal drugs may be taken; physical, mental, and social consequences of taking drugs for social and recreational purposes.
• issues concerning obtaining drugs and the effects on other people, e.g. stealing to pay for their habit, drinking or taking illegal drugs and driving, family problems;
• The effectiveness of methods aimed at reducing drug abuse and rehabilitating users;
• The law and drugs, including the debate about the classification and legal status of different drugs, including cannabis, ecstasy, heroin, solvents, alcohol

Religious Attitudes to Crime and Punishment
• An understanding of the religious beliefs about law and order;
• Concepts of right and wrong, conscience, duty and responsibility;
• The debate about the causes of crime including social, environmental and psychological explanations;
• The different types of crimes, including against the person, property and the state and religious offences;
• The aims of punishment, defined as protection, retribution, deterrence, reformation, vindication and reparation;
• The appropriateness of different forms of punishment in achieving the aims of punishment, including:
• The handling of young offenders,
• The effects of imprisonment,
• The meaning and implications of life imprisonment,
• Issues arising out of parole and early release,
• The debate about the death penalty (capital punishment);
• Alternatives to prison, including electronic tagging, probation, fines and community service and the debate about prison reform.

Topics to be studied:

Unit 2
• Religion and Planet Earth
• Religion and Prejudice
• Religion and Early Life
• Religion, War and Peace

Unit 3
• Religious Attitudes to Matters of Life (Medical Ethics)
• Religious Attitudes to the Elderly and Death
• Religious Attitudes to Drug Abuse
• Religious Attitudes to Crime and Punishment

Assessment Criteria:
Students will be examined on their understanding of Christian and Sikh perspectives on the topics of study. Students will also be assessed on giving valid arguments from two points of view including their own, religious and secular. They will be required to have detailed understanding of key terminology and be able to give examples where possible.
There are two papers to sit at the end of the second year unit 2 and unit 3.

Delivery of the Course:
Students will receive two lessons in year 9 and one lesson in year 10 per week for RE.
In addition to this after school and lunchtime revision will be available.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
RE is an excellent GCSE to have and opens up a wide variety of career paths such as working in the Police Force, Law, Social and Youth Work, Journalism, Teaching and Medicine. Universities see RE GCSE and A level as a highly academic courses which are challenging and relevant to today’s society.

What is matter made of? Why does an electric heater get hot? How does the human body work? How do buildings remain standing? Why do we look like our parents? What is the origin of the universe? What causes a rainbow? Where do we get metals from? What is the Periodic Table?

Science is a rigorous and demanding discipline which prepares students for the future by giving them skills in problem-solving, logic and reasoning and the ability to communicate at all levels. Science is a key skill for many careers and an education in science can open many doors to interesting jobs and careers.

Exam Board and Specification:
AQA Science A and AQA Additional Science
There are three written exams and a Controlled Assessment for each, leading to 2 GCSE qualifications.

Topics to be studied:
BIOLOGY
Keeping healthy, enzymes and digestion
Ecosystems, plants and animals in their habitats, human effects on the planet
Variation and Inheritance
Evolution

CHEMISTRY
Resources – rocks, metals, fuels
Structure, properties and uses of materials
The Periodic Table, atomic structure and analysis

PHYSICS
Types of energy; generating and using energy and renewable resources, electricity
Motion, forces, momentum
Radioactivity
Stars, galaxies and the universe

Assessment Criteria:

Delivery of the Course
3 hours per week in year 9, taught by Specialist Science Teachers
4 or 5 hours per week in years 10 and 11, taught by Specialist Science Teachers

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
Single Science A-level courses, Further and Higher Education, Apprenticeships
Possible careers: medical profession – nurse, dietician, physiotherapist, pharmacist; biochemist; engineer; materials scientist; nuclear physicist……the list is endless!

What is matter made of? Why does an electric heater get hot? How does the human body work? How do buildings remain standing? Why do we look like our parents? What is the origin of the universe? What causes a rainbow? Where do we get metals from? What is the Periodic Table?

Students will learn to answer these and other BIG questions about Life, the Universe and Everything, giving them a thorough grounding in the fundamental ideas of science and how the world works.

Science is a rigorous and demanding discipline which prepares students for the future by giving them skills in problem-solving, logic and reasoning and the ability to communicate at all levels. Science is a key skill for many careers and an education in science can open many doors to interesting jobs and careers.

Exam Board and Specification:
AQA Biology, Physics and Chemistry. There are three written exams and a Controlled Assessment in each subject, leading to 3 GCSE qualifications.

Topics to be studied:

BIOLOGY
Keeping healthy, understanding how the human body works
Ecosystems, plants and animals in their habitats, human effects on the planet
Variation and Inheritance
Evolution

CHEMISTRY
Resources – rocks, metals, fuels
Structure, properties and uses of materials
The Periodic Table, atomic structure and analysis
Chemistry of organic materials

PHYSICS
Types of energy; generating and using energy and renewable resources, electricity
Motion, forces, momentum, electromagnetism
Radioactivity and medical applications of physics
Stars, galaxies and the universe

Assessment Criteria:
There are three written exams and a Controlled Assessment in each subject, leading to 3 GCSE qualifications.

Delivery of the Course:
6 hours per week, taught by Specialist Science Teachers

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
Single Science A-level courses, Further and Higher Education, Apprenticeships
Possible careers: medical profession – nurse, doctor, physiotherapist, pharmacist; biochemist; engineer; materials scientist; nuclear physicist……the list is endless!

Albert Einstein said “Creativity is intelligence having fun”. GCSE is not all about having fun but it is about expanding the creative side of your brain. You do not necessarily have to want to follow a career in the Arts but it develops your ability to problem solve creatively.

There are also hundreds of careers which have an Art founding and a GCSE in Art would lead you to any of these. Many of our A Level Art students go on to study Art based degree courses in a number of subjects when they leave Wrotham School.

During the course we go on visits to enhance your learning. These are both in the UK and abroad such as Barcelona and Paris.

Exam Board and Specification:
AQA Art and Design

Topics to be studied:

Coursework: 60%
Pupils study a common theme and will broaden their experience in both 2 and 3 dimensional work including traditional and new technologies. They will be taught how Art and Design is related to social and historical context in a practical environment.
The aims are to teach students to select and record information. They will explore a diverse range of processes, materials and techniques before developing different kinds of outcomes.

Controlled Test: 40%
Preparation for the examination begins in the January of the second year. Pupils must respond to a theme or task set by the examination board. Pupils must research and develop their idea over four months and are then given ten hours to complete their final outcome.

Assessment Criteria:
Coursework = 60%
Controlled Test = 40%

Delivery of the Course:
This course will be delivered through taught lessons with students being expected to work with creativity and independence. There will be opportunity for students to access the Art department outside of curriculum hours and to partake in extra curricular visits.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
The Creative Industries employ over 2 million people and is one of the fastest growing sectors in the UK.
Graphic Designer, Advertising, Illustrator, Art Teacher, Art/Museum Gallery Curator, Theatre Set Designer, Medical Illustrator, Visual Merchandiser, Film Director, Ceramicist, Sign Maker, Animator, Website Designer, Fashion Designer, Photographer, Interior Decorator, Furniture Design and more…

This optional BTEC is equivalent to 1 GCSE. It requires students to study four separate units in order to develop their knowledge, skills and understanding of a range of areas of Business.

The skills which they will develop include verbal and written communication for business purposes, interview and job applications, sales closing techniques, research, team work and independent study.

Exam Board and Specification:
Edexcel BTEC First Award

Topics to be studied:

Module Content:
This is a practical work-related course. You will learn by completing projects, assignments and through one online exam. All units are based upon realistic or real life workplace situations, activities and demands.

The units studied are:
• Unit 1: Enterprise in the Business world
• Unit 2: Finance for Business
• Unit 7: Sales and Personal Selling
• Unit 8: Recruitment, Selection and Employment

Why study BTEC Business?
• This is a practical course which will give you the opportunity to complete assignments and activities based on realistic situations linked to working in a variety of businesses. It will provide you with grounding in what it is like to work as well as developing your, Communication, Numeracy, ICT, Time Management and Teamwork Skills. You will be assessed on the assignment work that you undertake during the two year and will be given at the end of the course.

Assessment Criteria:
Coursework / Examination requirements:
75% coursework spread over three Units. 25% externally assessed online examination for Unit 2

Delivery of the Course:
This course will be delivered through a mix of teaching and independent study. Lessons as far as possible will mirror an office environment.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
When you have completed the course, you can move on to a level three qualification such as the BTEC National Diploma in Business. Many students move on to a level three course and then progress to study Business or Law at University or find work in sectors such as Administration, Accounting, Customer Service, Finance, Retails, Personnel or Sales.

This course will assist you in developing practical work based skills, knowledge and understanding. Whist achieving the BTEC First Award in Business you will acquire a wide range of useful employability skills.

An ideal opportunity to start your journey in becoming a business tycoon. You could be the next Alan Sugar, Richard Branson, Mark Zuckerberg or Michelle Mone if you choose this course.

This optional GCSE requires students to study three separate units in order to develop their knowledge, skills and understanding of a range of areas of Business.

The skills which they will hone will include researching and analysing information, understanding economic concepts.

Exam Board and Specification:
Edexcel – Syllabus 5bS01, 2, 3.

Topics to be studied:
• Unit 1: Introduction to Small Business –Students will learn how to: spot a business opportunity, show enterprise, put a business idea into practice, make the start-up effective, understand the economic context.

• Unit 2: Investigating Small Business – Students will use the context to research, analyse and evaluate a selected task on enterprise issues.

• Unit 3: Building a Business. Students will study: marketing, meeting customer needs, financial management, people management, the wider world affecting business.

Assessment Criteria:
• Unit 1: An externally assessed 45 minute multiple choice and objective test.
• Unit 2: An internally assessed piece of coursework completed under controlled conditions.
• Unit 3: An externally assessed 90 minute written examination.

Delivery of the Course:
This course will be delivered through a mix of taught lessons and independent study and where possible will mirror an office style environment.

Career Progression to Post 16 Education:
When you have completed the course, you can move on to a level three qualification such as the BTEC National Diploma in Business.

Career Progression to the World of Employment:
This course will assist you in developing a knowledge and understanding of the Business world. Many students move on to a level three course and then progress to study Business or Law at University or find work in sectors such as Administration, Accounting, Customer Service, Finance, Retails, Personnel or Sales.

This academic course in Catering offers a unique opportunity for pupils to develop their knowledge and extend their skills within Catering.

It will provide opportunities to develop pupils’ interdisciplinary skills, a range of food preparation skills and a capacity for imaginative, innovative thinking, creativity and independence.

Exam Board and Specification:
WJEC Board.

Topics to be studied:
Unit 1: Catering skills related to food preparation and service

Controlled assessment – 60%

There are two controlled tasks (coursework). One to be completed in year 10 and the other in year 11. This is worth 60% of the overall GCSE grade.

TASK 1- Year 10: [20%]. A task set by the exam board. Student to research the task, prepare and cook several dishes in four hours and then evaluate. Last year’s task was preparing 3 sweet and one savoury dish for afternoon tea.

TASK 2- Year 11: [40%]. Students are given a task where they have to carry out research and show their knowledge of a food related topic. Then prepare and cook a two course meal and evaluate their work. Last year pupils investigated healthy eating. Students prepared a two course meal with accompaniments in three hours.

Unit 2: Catering, Food and the Customer

1¼ hour Written Paper – 40%

The paper will study the following areas:
• The industry – food and drink
• Job roles, employment opportunities and relevant training
• Health, safety and hygiene
• Food Poisoning and legislation
• Food preparation, cooking and presentation
• Nutrition and menu planning
• Costing and portion control
• Specialist equipment
• Communication and record keeping Environmental considerations

Assessment Criteria:
60% controlled assessment tasks and 40% exam.

Delivery of the Course:
Students will study Catering for three lessons per week and be expected to complete 90 minutes of homework per week. Students will cook once a week in preparation for their catering controlled tasks and they will be expected to bring ingredients from home on a WEEKLY basis.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
Due to the academic nature of the course it is well regarded at all educational establishments for progression to A’ Levels, NVQs and BTECs and University.

Possible Career options include: Food Quality Controller, Catering and Hospitality Industry, Food Production, Quality Assurance Advisor, Home Economist, Food Scientist, Dietician, Consumer Advisor, Sensory Analyst, Food Buyer, Chef, Public Health Officer, Nutritional Advisor and Product Development Manager.

Try to imagine a world without computers. There would be no PCs or laptops, and so no word processing or spreadsheets, no communication using the web, no online shopping or photo enhancement. There would be no mobile phones or digital cameras, because these are computers at heart and without the understanding of computer science these would fail to exist. Computer Science covers a huge amount, from the design of computers, through to programming them, and understanding applications.

Computer science teaches you how to use computers to make the world work as it does. You will learn how to make a computer behave how you want, tackling complex tasks through the use of mathematical equations and code. At the end of the course you will have a good working knowledge of computer systems, be able to programme games, as well as analyse problems and fix coded errors.

Exam Board and Specification:
OCR GCSE Computing (Computer Science)

Topics to be studied:
Unit A451: Computer Systems and programming
You will have 1 hour and 30 minutes to complete this exam. This unit covers the body of knowledge about computer systems on which the examination will be based.

Unit A452: Practical investigation
This is an investigative computing task, chosen from a list provided by OCR. This is a controlled assessment which assesses the following; research, technical understanding, analysis of problem, historical perspective, use of technical writing skills, recommendations/evaluation.

Unit A453: Programming project
This unit is a controlled assessment where students will need to understand standard programming techniques. They will be expected to design a coded solution to a problem including suitable algorithms, input and output formats, use variables and structures and test the product.

Assessment Criteria:
60% controlled assessment tasks and 40% exam.

Delivery of the Course:
Students will study Computer Science for three lessons per week and be expected to complete 90 minutes of homework per week.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
This will allow students to study Computing courses either at A-Level or at College. Possible career routes could be; Games Developer, Multimedia Programmer, Systems Developer, Computer Graphics Artists, Network Engineer, Web Designer, Robotics Programmer, Information Systems Manager or Software Designer/Engineer.

You could be a star on the stage or in the movies!
GCSE Drama will help students to develop many transferable skills that employers often require in their employees, for example, confidence, strong communication and presentation skills, ability to work effectively as a team, and working under pressure to deadlines.

Exam Board and Specification:
Edexcel

Topics to be studied:
Module Content

The course consists of 3 units:
Unit 1- Drama Exploration
Unit 2- Exploring Play Texts
Unit 3- Drama Performance

Assessment Criteria:
• Commitment to group work through good attendance
• Ability to work co-operatively as a team
• Confidence to perform in front of others and experiment with creative ideas
• Perseverance and focus in order to work to deadlines
• Supportive personality and respectful of others
• Willingness to communicate and develop ideas

Coursework Requirement:
Unit 1- Drama Exploration: 30% of the GCSE
• In this unit, students will explore a theme or topic as a stimulus to deepen their understanding of how explorative drama strategies, elements and medium can be used to communicate meaning and create dramatic form.
• Controlled assessment of this unit is through practical drama workshops led by the teacher and documentary response to the workshops of maximum 2000 words.
Unit 2- Exploring Play Texts: 30% of the GCSE
• In this unit, students will explore and interpret a play text using explorative strategies, and the medium and elements of drama to communicate meaning, themes and issues within the play. Students will also be required to experience and evaluate a live theatre performance as part of the written element of the unit.
• Controlled assessment of this unit is through practical drama workshops led by the teacher; documentary response to the workshops of maximum 1000 words; and a live performance evaluation of maximum 2000 words.
Exam Requirement:
Unit 3- Drama Performance: 40% of the GCSE
• In this unit, students will work as a group to devise a 30 minute piece of drama, which will be performed live to a visiting external examiner. Students will be examined on use of style and form, voice and movement, characterisation and role, and communication. There is no written component to the examination.

Delivery of the Course:
This will be delivered through a mix of practical and theory and requires a high level of commitment to after school rehearsals. This course will be supported by various visits to theatre productions.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:

Career Progression to Post 16 Education:
A GCSE Drama qualification will enable progression to A level Theatre Studies, A Level Performing Arts or BTEC Level 3 Performing Arts, and onto higher education to study Drama, Theatre or Performance.

Career Progression to the World of Employment:
As well as being a useful qualification for progression into drama and performing arts related careers.

The ability to speak a second language opens up a whole range of possibilities both in terms of future career prospects and personal fulfilment.

Studying French can create and develop an interest not just in how people communicate but also in other cultures. This is particularly relevant and useful in today’s multicultural and multilingual society. With easier access to international travel more and more people are deciding to travel abroad even if just for short periods and the ability to speak another language is a major asset. In addition employers are increasingly aware of the value of being able to speak French or another language.

This will help improve our students’ opportunities in the future.

Exam Board and Specification:
Edexcel GCSE French/Foundation

Topics to be studied:
• Yourself and your family
• Your free time
• Health and healthy lifestyle
• Local area and amenities
• Holidays
• Education and future plans
• Business and work

Assessment Criteria:

Writing: 30%
To be done in class time (2 weeks preparation-6 hours) and 1 hour exam
Students must be able to write 200 words about a topic prepared beforehand and must be able to remember it.

Speaking: 30%
To be done in class time (2 weeks preparation- 6 hours) Students should be able to speak between 4 and 6 minutes from memory on a topic given and include most of the criteria included in the writing exam as well as good pronunciation and accent.

Reading and Listening: 20% and 20%
Students must practice their listening and reading skills on the different websites provided (atantot, linguascope, languages online, Sunderland school website, Asshcombe school MFL website) and practice in class.

Students must practice by reading as much as possible in the target language, reading magazines, texts on the internet and practice in class.

Delivery of the Course:
Students will study French for three lessons per week and be expected to complete 90 minutes of homework per week. Study will be supported with opportunity to visit France.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
This will allow students to study languages at A level and then at university. Students could become translators, interpreters, teachers or work in business.

If you enjoy learning about people and their societies, economies, cultures and the environment and you are keen to learn and develop a wide range of skills, then Geography may be for you!

Geography is the study of Earth’s landscapes, peoples, places and environments. It is about the world in which we live.

Geography is, in the broadest sense, an education for life and for living. Learning through geography (whether gained through formal learning or experientially through travel, fieldwork and expeditions) helps us all to be more socially and environmentally sensitive, informed and responsible citizens.

Exam Board and Specification:
AQA GCSE Geography A 9030.

Topics to be studied:

Unit 1: Physical Geography
• The Restless Earth
• Living World
• The Coastal Zone

Unit 2: Human Geography
• Population Change
• The Development Gap
• Tourism

Unit 3: Local Fieldwork Investigation

Assessment Criteria:
Unit 1 (Physical) written paper – 37.5% of the full GCSE
Unit 2 (Human) written paper – 37.5% of the full GCSE
Unit 3 is a controlled assessment worth 25% of the full GCSE

Delivery of the Course:
Students will study Geography for three lessons per week (3 hours in total) delivered by subject specialists. Homework is compulsory.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
Business & Finance – eg. Advertising, Market Research
Education, Professional and Social Services – eg. Police Service, Teaching, Armed Forces
Scientific Services – eg. Cartography (Map Making), Technology, Research
Leisure, Travel & Tourism – eg. Air Traffic Control, Tour operator
Management & Administration – eg. Personnel Management, Civil Services
Environmental Management – eg. Urban & Rural Planning, Architecture

History is the study of the past, you will learn about different time periods and changes over time.

You will also get to study some topics in depth. You will develop your extended writing skills, analyse evidence and take part in a variety of activities. You can go on to study History at A Level and at University.

Exam Board and Specification:
GCSE History B (Edexcel).

Topics to be studied:
Unit 1- Medicine and Treatment through Time, 1 hour 15 min exam- 25% of total grade
Unit 2- Life in Germany 1919-1945, 1 hour 15 min exam- 25% of total grade
Unit 3- Source Enquiry on the transformation of surgery, 1 hour 15 min exam- 25% of total grade
Unit 4- Controlled Assessment- Protest in 1960s USA, Controlled Assessment, 25% of total grade

Assessment Criteria:
3 exams (each worth 25%, 75% of the course in total)
Controlled Assessment (25%)

Delivery of the Course:
A variety of activities will be used in class, similar to the way history is taught at Key Stage 3, in addition exam practice will take place and additional revision sessions will be offered outside of lesson time.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
The skills of argument, analysis, detecting bias and reporting are valued by many employers.

History is seen as a particularly useful subject for the following career paths:-
Heritage, tourism, archive work, restoration/ architecture, librarian, teaching, archaeology, local and national government, civil service, diplomatic service, media and writing, journalism and sports journalism, law, armed forces, police force and acting. A large proportion of History graduates go on to work in business and finance using the analytical skills they have gained.

In an ever developing world in technology, ICT will prove to be key for future success, in your own lives and in your future career choices. ICT engages people with the modern world and follows trends in design and computing. ICT will always change and develop and will allow confident young people the chance to adapt and change with it.

Exam Board and Specification:
ICT Creative Technology BTEC from Edexcel.

Topics to be studied:

Unit 1: An Online World
1 hour exam
This unit will help you understand the main technologies and processes behind the internet and investigate how they come together to let you view websites and send information across the world. The internet and web of tomorrow will be even more powerful, more connected, more intuitive and a more important part of our lives.

Unit 3: A Digital Portfolio
Controlled Assessment
For this unit, your digital portfolio will have a clear purpose and audience to show them who you are and what you are capable of. It should have a structure that is logical and easy to navigate and must be in a format that can be uploaded and viewed on the web.

Unit 4: Animation
You will be working as a trainee computer animator for Walt Disney Studios. They are seeking an animation which is suitable for web and will be placed on their home page to advertise the latest Disney Production.

Unit 7 Digital Video
You are working for 20th Fox and you will be creating the opening sequence to a Horror film called the haunted. You will be filming and editing videos to produce a quality trailer.

Assessment Criteria:
80% controlled assessment tasks and 20% exam.

Delivery of the Course:
Students will study ICT for three lessons per week and be expected to complete 90 minutes of homework per week.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
This will allow students to study IT related course for Level 3 qualifications. Students could become web designers, animators, computer programmers or students choose to go into network management.

‘Writing about music is like dancing about architecture’. The GCSE Music course focuses heavily on practical content, with both performance and composition forming the majority of the final qualification. Students explore in depth, through music-making activities, the actual techniques involved in creating music, both in performing and composing. At KS3 pupils successfully get involved in playing and working on the core skills that enable them to partake in musical activity. However at KS4, students explore the reasons why a performance is successful; why pulse is necessary; how and why harmony works; how structure works and how all of the many elements in music contribute to the success of any given piece. They do this through practical music-making on their instrument of choice.

Students will be encouraged to be creative yet do so with intent, based on what they learn during the course. The creative skills and processes that students learn will lend themselves to many areas in life. As most people will know, learning how to ‘do’ music requires much patience and commitment to refinement so this alone will help prepare students for their future lives, regardless of what may interest them after their GCSEs.

Topics to be studied:
Students will look at various genres of music and will study various musical content, context and themes. Students will learn technicalities in producing music and have ample opportunity to participate in all elements of performance.

Assessment Criteria:
Coursework: 60% (internally assessed)
Broken down into two units:

Unit B351 – Integrated Tasks – 30% of qualification:
Pupils create 1 solo performance on their chosen instrument and 1 solo original composition for the same instrument.

Unit B352 – Practical Portfolio – 30% of qualification:
Pupils create 1 ensemble performance using the same instrument as in Unit B351 OR a different instrument, and 1 composition or arrangement.

The content for the performances/compositions/arrangement are dictated by a combination of Area[s] Of Study which focus on particular musical content/contexts/themes. (Both tasks require accompanying written commentary/log/evaluation).

Controlled Tests: 40% (externally assessed)

Unit B353 – Creative Task – 20 %:
Pupils are set a ‘creative task’, usually to be completed in 45 minutes, where they must create and communicate a short piece of music in response to a set extending beyond a sentence stimulus set by OCR. A choice of six stimuli will be offered: a rhythmic phrase; a note pattern; a melodic phrase; a chord sequence; a set of words; music to describe a sequence of events.

Unit B354 – Listening Test – 20%:
Pupils sit a final listening exam for 1 hour and 30 minutes. Candidates will be expected to answer questions based on extracts of music played during the test. The following types of question will be asked: multiple choice; short answer questions; questions that require an answer using either a series of single words or phrases, or prose or extending beyond a sentence.

Delivery of the Course:
This course will be delivered through a mix of practical and theory. It is a requirement of the course that students experience all elements of performance.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
This course is ideal for students who wish to go on and study a course in Level 3 music or Performing Arts and who have aspirations to study Music at University. It is also a good course for students who aspire to have a career in Music.

This specification has been designed to encourage students to be able to design and make products with creativity and originality, using a range of materials and techniques.

Packaging, labelling and instructions are encouraged as part of the complete design proposal and advertising, points of sale, etc. can be used to supplement the making experience and help create products which can be evaluated for their commercial viability.

Students will be enthused and challenged by the range of practical activities possible as the specification seeks to build upon the multimedia approach.

Exam Board and Specification:
AQA Product Design

Topics to be studied:
Design and Technology is a practical subject area which requires the application of knowledge and understanding when developing ideas, planning, producing products and evaluating them. The distinction between Designing and Making is a convenient one to make, but in practice the two often merge. For example, research can involve not only investigating printed matter and people’s opinions, but also investigating e.g. proportions, adhesives, colour, structures and materials through practical work.
• Designing Skills
• Making Skills

Assessment Criteria:
• Unit 1: Written Paper (45551)
• 40% of total marks
• 2 hours, 120 marks
• Unit 2: Design and Making Practice (45552)
• 60% of total marks
• Approximately 45 hours, 90 marks
• Consists of a single design and make activity selected from a range of board set tasks for assessments.

Delivery of the Course:
Students will study Design and Technology for two lessons per week and be expected to complete 60 minutes of homework per week.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
On completion students can go on to study a combination of A Levels and BTEC courses or Apprenticeships. A Level Product Design is offered and enables students to study a wide range of Degree courses at University. Career routes include Architecture, Product Design, Interior design, Fashion design, Motor vehicle design, Market research, Branding, model making, Set design to name just a few.

The ability to speak a second language opens up a whole range of possibilities both in terms of future career prospects and personal fulfilment.

Studying Spanish can create and develop an interest not just in how people communicate but also in other cultures. This is particularly relevant and useful in today’s multicultural and multilingual society.

With easier access to international travel more and more people are deciding to travel abroad even if just for short periods and the ability to speak another language is a major asset. In addition employers are increasingly aware of the value of being able to speak Spanish or another language. This will help improve our students’ opportunities in the future.

Exam Board and Specification:
Edexcel GCSE Spanish Higher/Foundation.

Topics to be studied:
• Yourself and your family
• Your free time
• Health and healthy lifestyle
• Local area and amenities
• Holidays
• Education and future plans
• Business and work

Assessment Criteria:

Writing: 30%
To be done in class time (2 weeks preparation-6 hours) and 1 hour exam
Students must be able to write 200 words about a topic prepared beforehand and must be able to remember it.

Speaking: 30%
To be done in class time (2 weeks preparation- 6 hours) Students should be able to speak between 4 and 6 minutes from memory on a topic given and include most of the criteria included in the writing exam as well as good pronunciation and accent.

Reading and Listening: 20% and 20%
Students must practice their listening and reading skills on the different websites provided (atantot, linguascope, languages online, Sunderland school website, Ashcombe school MFL website) and practice in class. Students must practice by reading as much as possible in the target language, reading magazines, texts on the internet and practice in class

Delivery of the Course:
Students will study Spanish for three lessons per week and be expected to complete 90 minutes of homework per week. Study will be supported with an opportunity to visit Spain.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
Students will study Spanish for three lessons per week and be expected to complete 90 minutes of homework per week.

You will need a positive attitude – this will help you meet new challenges more easily!

As a BTEC student you have to take responsibility for your own learning!

Your teachers will not expect to have to stand over you all the time to check what you are doing. This will help you develop the skills to be mature and independent.

Organisation is really important!

Exam Board and Specification:
The Edexcel Level 1 / 2 BTEC First Award in Sport.

Topics to be studied:
Unit 1: Fitness for sport and exercise covers aspects such as:
• Knowing about the components of fitness and the principles of training
• Components of skill-related fitness:
• Why fitness components are important for successful participation in given sports
• Exercise intensity and how it can be determined
• The basic principles of training (FITT)
• Additional principles of training
• Exploring different fitness training methods
• Additional requirements for each of the fitness training methods
• Fitness training methods for: flexibility training, strength, muscular endurance, power training, aerobic endurance training and speed training
• Investigating fitness testing to determine fitness levels
• The importance of fitness testing to sports performers and coaches
• Requirements for administration of each fitness test
• Interpretation of fitness test results.

Unit 2: Practical sport covers aspects such as:
• Understanding the rules, regulations and scoring systems for
selected sports.
• Practically demonstrate skills, techniques and tactics in selected sports.
• Being able to review sports performance.

Unit 4: The Sports Performer in Action

In this unit you will:
• Know about the short-term responses and long-term adaptations of the body systems to exercise.
• Know about the different energy systems used during sports performance.

And/or

Unit 5: Training for Personal Fitness

In this unit you will:
• Design a personal fitness training programme.
• Know about exercise adherence factors and strategies for continued training success.
• Implement a self-designed personal fitness training programme to achieve own goals and objectives.
• Review a personal fitness training programme.

And/or

Unit 6: Leading Sports Activities

In this unit you will:
• Know the attributes associated with successful sports leadership
• Undertake the planning and leading of sports activities
• Review the planning and leading of sports activities.

Those units are constantly under review and the best ones will be selected depending on the cohort of the group.

Assessment Criteria:
80% controlled assessment tasks and 20% exam.

Delivery of the Course:
Students will study Btec Sport for two lessons per week and be expected to complete 90 minutes of homework per week.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
This will allow you access to the following career progressions
Sports Industry – leisure centre, health clubs, coaching, teaching, physiotherapist, sports journalist, personal trainer, sports instructor, armed forces, emergency services.

A GCSE in Physical Education will encourage students to be inspired, moved and changed by following a broad, coherent, satisfying and worthwhile course of study and to develop an awareness and appreciation of their own and others’ cultures in relation to physical education.

It will encourage creativity and decision-making skills to enable students to plan effectively for performances and to respond to changing situations. GCSE Physical Education also students to perform in a range of physical activities, and to become increasingly effective in their performance in different types of physical activity and roles such as player/participant, leader and official.

Exam Board and Specification:
Edexcel GCSE in Physical Education.

Topics to be studied and Assessment Criteria:
Unit 1: The Theory of Physical Education

This unit has two sections:
Section 1.1: Healthy, active lifestyles
Section 1.2: Your healthy, active body.

Students, taking the full GCSE, will gain knowledge of the impact of a healthy, active lifestyle on their cardiovascular, respiratory, muscular and skeletal systems and general wellbeing.

Students will learn:
• that, although they can be looked at separately, body systems do not work in isolation and that good physical and mental health depends on the interaction of all these body systems during exercise and physical activity. This will inform students’ own practical performance and general wellbeing.
• about the impact of physical activity and exercise on the cardiovascular, respiratory, muscular and skeletal systems (over the short and long term), and also how lifestyle choices (such as exercise, diet, rest and drugs) affect those systems, fitness levels and the mind and body in general.
• how a lifestyle that contributes positively to physical, mental and social wellbeing, and which includes regular exercise and physical activity in conjunction, is what makes a healthy, active lifestyle.

1 hour 30 min exam based around short answer, multiple choice and long answer questions

Unit 2: Performance in Physical Education

This unit has two sections:
Section 2.1: Practical performance
Section 2.2: Analysis of performance.

This unit is assessed under controlled conditions, and students need to undertake two different controlled assessment tasks.

Section 2.1:
Students need to undertake practical performances in different contexts, within selected physical activities, in the role of either player/participant, official or leader.
In the GCSE in Physical Education students must offer four performances.

Section 2.2:
Students need to undertake an analysis of performance in a selected physical activity.

Delivery of Course

Students will study ICT for two lessons per week and be expected to complete 90 minutes of homework per week.

Progression and Possible Career Routes:
The Edexcel GCSEs in Physical Education allow students to progress to higher level general qualifications, such as the Advanced GCEs in Physical Education, as well as related qualifications such as Diplomas in Sport and Active Leisure, and qualifications with a vocational focus, such as BTEC Firsts and Nationals in Sport or Sport and Exercise Sciences.