Science

mma_vandyke_2010_1_538The science department is staffed by 8 graduate specialists, ably assisted by three technicians.  Nine well- equipped laboratories are available for science lessons and are served from a large, central preparation area. All laboratories have wireless internet access and digital projectors.  The department also has two trolleys of laptops and two digital visualisers to enhance teaching and learning, together with interactive whiteboards.

Clubs and Trips
All students are given the opportunity to participate in the Crest Awards scheme, working towards the silver and gold awards.  There are a variety of trips organised during the year including trips to ‘Science Live’, an interactive science show, and ‘The Big Bang Fair’.  Each year there is an opportunity for students to participate in workshops in university laboratories, including involvement in the Salters Chemistry camps.  Students and their parents are encouraged to attend lectures from scientists in the Vandyke Theatre.  Dr William Murray, the particle physicist leading the hunt for the Higgs Bosun particle in the Large Hadron Collider in Geneva, gave a fascinating lecture to a receptive group of Vandyke students, parents, staff and governors as well as students, parents and staff from other local schools.

A Levels
Chemistry, biology, physics and applied science are taught at A level.  All the subjects are delivered by specialist teachers, who organise one-day trips to lectures, shows and workshops at universities designed to enthuse and support students through their study.  All the subjects have large practical components and the department is well-resourced to carry these out, students being encouraged to work independently to prepare them for the future.

Options in science
All students in Year 9 have seven hours of science a fortnight.  They start with a short practical skills topic and then move quickly onto the new GCSE content, covering physics, chemistry and bioogy in rotation. All students have the opportunity to follow the course that best suits their talents and abilities and the science team spend time with all students to ensure they have chosen and are following the correct path.

Students in year 10 and 11 study science for 10 hours a fortnight.  This will lead to either 3 GCSEs in biology, physics and chemistry or 2 GCSEs in core and additional science. 

All science courses are supported by Show my Homework where lesson worksheets, powerpoints and homeworks are posted regularly. The science separtment also has a twitter account @VandykeSciDept where notifications and interesting facts are regularly posted.