Science Key Stage 4 | Rainhill High School

Science Key Stage 4

“You cannot hope to build a better world without improving the individuals. To that end each of us must work for his own improvement, and at the same time share a general responsibility for all humanity, our particular duty being to aid those to whom we think we can be most useful.” - Marie Curie

All pupils will continue their studies in Science in KS4, and continue to study Biology, Chemistry and Physics, combining to make a double GCSE worth two qualifications. Pupils will also consider science as part of the options process, and some will opt to take ‘Separate Sciences’. This takes up one of the option block choices (5 extra lessons a fortnight) and these pupils will gain 3 separate GCSEs in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. This route includes some extra topics, which are particularly useful (although not necessary) if pupils are hoping to continue their studies into A Level.

Students will continue to study in a spiral curriculum, re-visiting topics as they increase in complexity, application and depth. At KS4, students will have three separate, subject specialist teachers, and study all three sciences at the same time.

Students will continue to engage with retrieval, practice, practical investigation and real-world application, as they more complexly consider their future careers and impact on the world around them.

We teach and certificate the AQA Trilogy Combined Science (9-1) and AQA Separate Science (Biology, Chemistry and Physics) GCSEs.

Reading for Pleasure

Book TitlePublishing InformationWhat's it about?
How to Grow a Human – Phillip BallWilliam Collins 0008331774‘A cutting-edge examination of what it means to be human and to have a 'self' in the face of new scientific developments in genetic editing, cloning and neural downloading. After seeing his own cells used to grow clumps of new neurons – essentially mini-brains – Philip Ball begins to examine the concepts of identity and consciousness.’
I think you’ll find it’s a bit more complicated than that – Ben GoldacreFourth Estate 9780007505142‘In Bad Science, Ben Goldacre hilariously exposed the tricks that quacks and journalists use to distort science. In Bad Pharma, he put the $600 billion global pharmaceutical industry under the microscope. Now the pick of the journalism by one of our wittiest, most indignant and most fearless commentators on the worlds of medicine and science is collected in one volume.’
What If? – Randall MunroeJoh Murray 1848549563‘From the creator of the wildly popular, hilarious and informative answers to important questions you probably never thought to ask.’
There Is No Planet B – Mike Berners-LeeCambridge University Press 1108439586‘Feeding the world, climate change, biodiversity, antibiotics, plastics - the list of concerns seems endless. But what is most pressing, what are the knock-on effects of our actions, and what should we do first? Do we all need to become vegetarian? How can we fly in a low-carbon world? Should we frack? How can we take control of technology?’
Bad Science – Ben GoldacreFourth Estate 000728487X‘Since 2003 Dr Ben Goldacre has been exposing dodgy medical data in his popular Guardian column. In this eye-opening book he takes on the MMR hoax and misleading cosmetics ads, acupuncture and homeopathy, vitamins and mankind’s vexed relationship with all manner of ‘toxins’.’
Oil: Anatomy of an Industry – Matthew YeomansNew Press 1422365107‘Matthew Yeomans begins his investigation into the role of oil in America by trying to spend a day without oil--only to stumble before exiting the bathroom (petroleum products play a role in shampoo, shaving cream, deodorant, and contact lenses). When Oil was published in cloth last year, it was quickly recognized as the wittiest and most accessible guide to the product that drives the U.S. economy and undergirds global conflict.’
The Disappearing Spoon – Sam KeanBlack SWAN 0552777501‘Why did Gandhi hate iodine (I, 53)? Why did the Japanese kill Godzilla with missiles made of cadmium (Cd, 48)? How did radium (Ra, 88) nearly ruin Marie Curie's reputation? And why did tellurium (Te, 52) lead to the most bizarre gold rush in history?’
Strange Glow – Timothy J JorgensenPrinceton University Press 0691165033‘More than ever before, radiation is a part of our modern daily lives. We own radiation-emitting phones, regularly get diagnostic x-rays, such as mammograms, and submit to full-body security scans at airports. We worry and debate about the proliferation of nuclear weapons and the safety of nuclear power plants. But how much do we really know about radiation? And what are its actual dangers?’
Just Six Numbers – Martin ReesW&N 178022690X‘How did a single genesis event create billions of galaxies, black holes, stars and planets? How did atoms assemble - here on Earth, and perhaps on other worlds - into living beings intricate enough to ponder their origins? This book describes the recent avalanche of discoveries about the universe's fundamental laws, and the deep connections that exist between stars and atoms - the cosmos and the microscopic world.’

Text Books & Revision Guides

Revision Guide - Combined Science Trilogy (Higher / Foundation)CGP9781782945598 9781782945604
Revision Guide – Separate Science; Biology / Chemistry / PhysicsCGP9781782945574 9781782945567 9781782945581
AQA GCSE (9-1) Combined Science Trilogy Student BookHodder9781471883286


Website AddressDescription of what is offeredPassword
YouTube – CognitoFantastic YouTube channel targeted exactly at GCSE AQA Science, with brilliant clear animations and descriptionsn/a
Senecalearning.comBite-sized chunks of AQA specific learning, you can access and test yourself on topic by topicSet your own notes with excellent diagrams, topic questions and practice exam questions arranged by topicn/a
Quizlet.comThousands of flashcards with key information, and practice questions to test yourselfSet your own


We encourage all of our pupils to engage in enrichment and extra curricular activities in school. We are currently offering the following enrichment in KS3 but for up to date information, please consult the latest edition of the Parent Newsletter.

Club or ActivityWhen & WhereWho can I ask for more information?
Physics/Chemistry Support3-3:30 - B205Dr Shin
Science Support3-3:30 - S204Mr Pownell
Biology Support ClinicTuesday 3-3:30 - B201Dr Gordon
Chemistry SupportMonday / Fri 3-3:30 - S205Mr Sharman
AM LP Preparation8-8:40am - B204Mr Hurst

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