The Science Department is dedicated to providing challenging lessons where students can learn about science in a safe and positive environment. Our aim is to create confident young scientists who have an enquiring mind and a good work-ethic.
Key Stage 3
At Key Stage 3 students are taught within their tutor groups until Christmas when they are then organised into sets. The curriculum that the students follow in years 7 and 8 is varied, exciting and builds a strong foundation for GCSE.
The curriculum for Year 7 includes the following topics (not necessarily in this order):
- Biology: Cells; Body systems; Reproduction
- Chemistry: Particles; Elements, Atoms and Compounds; Reactions; Acids and Alkalis
- Physics: Forces; Sound and Light; Space
The curriculum for Year 8 includes the following topics (not necessarily in this order):
- Biology: Health and Lifestyle; Ecosystem Processes; Adaptation and Inheritance
- Chemistry: The Periodic Table; Separation Techniques; Metals and Acids; The Earth
- Physics: Electricity and Magnetism; Energy; Motion and Pressure
Key Stage 4
Years 9 to 11 build upon the skills and knowledge acquired during years 7 and 8, however the girls will now begin studying content for their GCSE examinations. The girls will be taught in sets, and will cover a wide range of interesting content and activities including practical experiments, debates, presentations and role plays!
There are two pathways; combined science and single science.
- Combined science: Combined science is a double award, which means the girls will achieve two GCSEs at the end of the course. It includes content from Biology, Chemistry and Physics and will be assessed over six exam papers. Each of the papers will assess knowledge and understanding from distinct topic areas. Combined science GCSEs will be graded from 1 to 9, with 9 being the top score. Exam questions on these papers will be mixture of multiple choice, structured, closed short answer and open response. There is no coursework content but the students will be required to complete a series of practical experiments. Questions on these experiments will appear in the examinations.
- Single Science: Students on the single science pathway will be awarded three GCSEs; biology, chemistry and physics. The girls will sit a total of six exam papers, two for each GCSE. Each of the three GCSEs will be graded on a scale from 1 to 9, with 9 being the highest. Exam questions on these papers will be mixture of multiple choice, structured, closed short answer and open response. There is no coursework content but the students will be required to complete a series of practical experiments. Questions on these experiments will appear in the examinations.
Key Stage 5
At key stage 5 students have the option to study Biology, Chemistry and Physics A-level. Teaching is split between Didcot Girls’ School and St. Birinus School. For more information please visit the D6 website.
The Science Club at Didcot Girls’ School is a thriving mixture of explosions, experiments and competition winning projects. Year 7 and 8 girls are part of the Junior Science Club and girls in Years 9, 10, 11 and the 6th Form are members of Senior Science Club.
What the girls think about Science Club:
'I enjoy Science Club because you can make crystals, get Crest Awards and do experiments.'
'I love Science Club because you can do fun experiments at the same time as learning lots of new things.'
'I love Science Club as we always do something fun and different. Our experiments don’t always go right but you can guarantee that you will have loads of fun.'