The Chemistry Department aims to develop skills of understanding, problem solving and practical investigation and to produce responsible and creative scientists who have enthusiasm for learning and an ability to use and communicate their knowledge.
Chemistry begins in the stars. The stars are the source of the chemical elements, which are the building blocks of matter and the core of our subject.
Chemistry is the study of atomic particles and how they combine and react. Pupils acquire a knowledge and understanding of chemical patterns and apply them to familiar and unfamiliar situations. This is a highly practical subject and a third of lesson time is spent carrying out practical work, which pupils are encouraged to link to theoretical ideas.
The subject puts emphasis on the importance of the scientific method, enabling pupils to design, carry out and evaluate experiments. Through this, they develop chemical knowledge, skills and understanding that enables them to problem-solve in a wider context.
The SP-S2 courses are taught initially by whole class teaching using common course materials but there is still an emphasis on the development of practical skills. Throughout the year pupils are encouraged to develop their thinking skills and to become independent learners whilst carrying out a variety of exciting investigations and experiments.
Study skills are developed from SP onwards, introducing revision techniques such as mind maps and concept diagrams, in preparation for the first national examination. Pupils are encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning; self-assessment and target setting are actively encouraged. At all stages pupils are encouraged to be open-minded and questioning and to appreciate the importance of chemistry in their lives.