Science at Rowan High School…


Rowan High School is a maintained, mixed secondary school that specifically caters for children who have a diagnosis of autism and in some cases, other additional needs.  The ability of each student varies greatly and as a result, it is essential for the curriculum to allow opportunity for all students to be both supported and challenged, to ensure maximum progress is made in Science. 

The rationale for this curriculum is to engage all students through a variety of both practical and theoretical activities accessible by students of all abilities. 

If you have any further questions please direct them to Miss Mcloughlin at school who will be happy to help.


The intent of the Science curriculum is to encourage and inspire students to be more aware and gain an understanding of the world around them.  An aim of studying Science is to stimulate their natural curiosity in finding out why things occur in the way they do.  It is also essential that students gain an understanding of key concepts that may help them solve problems in unfamiliar situations and use the scientific methods of investigation taught in the laboratory, to solve problems in a disciplined and methodological way in their lives.  In addition to this, it is imperative that students recognise the contribution that Science makes in society and towards their own personal development through awareness of health and safety matters, and the need to respect our environment and living things.   

The Science curriculum at Rowan High School is designed to ensure the students are taught a range of concepts from across all of the scientific disciplines and the statutory topics required in the National Curriculum.  Topics are taught in an order, where possible, taking into account the time of year and season to maximise learning opportunities outside of the classroom.


Delivery of the broad range of content is differentiated to ensure all students attending Rowan High School can access each lesson.  A plethora of teaching styles are utilised to engage all students who have a range of different preferred learning styles.  As there is a broad spectrum of content to cover, there are numerous opportunities for investigative work which includes practical activities and theoretical.  Where possible, content is differentiated to accommodate learners who may be on differing accreditation pathways, such as Entry Level Certificate or GCSE. 

Schemes of Learning are continuously reflected upon and subsequently adapted to improve the learning experience for students.  This could be including information relating to new scientific discoveries or phenomena that coincides with topics covered in the curriculum, or to include cross-curricular links with other subjects.

Topics covered in Key Stage Three are built upon at Key Stage Four to deepen students’ understanding and to prepare them for their accreditation pathways.  Areas are taught in an age-appropriate manner and as and when is appropriate for the students’ development, such as puberty for example.

A range of assessment techniques are employed, both summative and formative to monitor the progress made by each student.  Progress is recorded through the Doddle program adopted by the school, which allows areas for development to be easily identified for each student.

Curriculum Overview at Each Key Stage

The Science curriculum at Rowan High ensures that students are able to build upon their knowledge as they move upwards through the school.  As students have a range of abilities, it is essential that each topic is accessed by all, and therefore, the curriculum has been designed to have a degree of flexibility, particularly where KS3 meets KS4, to allow students the time they need to thoroughly learn and be assessed appropriately where necessary.  It has been essential to ensure that the curriculum has not been narrowed, and that all students will access all of the curriculum, at a level appropriate for them, throughout their time at Rowan High School.

Key Stage 3

Throughout Years 7 and 8, students study a combination of themes that are based on Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Environment and Working Scientifically.   There is no formal assessment at the end of Key Stage Three Science, however, students undertake appropriate assessment throughout.

Key Stage 4

Throughout Key Stage 4, all students study Entry Level Certificate in Science, accredited by AQA.  In addition to this, students are co-taught AQA Trilogy GCSE Science to ensure they are able to access the GCSE qualification, should it be appropriate for them to do so.  All themes: Biology, Chemistry and Physics are studied which provide many opportunities for practical investigations and practice exam questions.

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