Springwell Learning Community

Curriculum

Our Key Stage 4 curriculum is continually revised to match the needs of individuals with academic outcomes. We are currently able to offer a wide range of GCSE’s which include English Language, English Literature, Maths, Core Science, Additional Science, ICT.

GCSE English

AQA English Language: this GCSE consists of two examinations, each being 1 hour and 45 minutes long. Across the two equally weighted papers, students will answer reading assessment questions on texts from the 19th, 20th and 21 century, followed by answering one writing task on each paper. Grades 1 – 9 will now be awarded with grade 9 being equivalent to an A* under the old specification.

GCSE English prepares students with the skills necessary to access all forms of reading and writing once they have left school which will assist them in accessing further education. Students develop reading skills through the study of a range of texts, while writing skills encourage students to be inventive with language whist considering how form, audience and purpose are important in the language choices they make. Texts are selected according to the ability of each student, providing a personalised approach to the subject and regular assessment informs students of their progress and areas for improvement. Additionally, students are assessed in ‘Speaking and Listening’, communication skills that are essential to all areas of modern life.

GCSE Maths

We have recently seen the introduction of the new GCSE specification for mathematics (9-1) with the first assessment from June 2017. The pupils are assessed in 5 different areas:

NUMBER, RATIO, PROPORTION AND RATES OF CHANGE, ALGEBRA, GEOMETRY AND MEASURES, STATISTICS AND PROBABILITY. 

All the assessments are examination based and the pupils take three papers of an hour and a half. One paper is non – calculator and in the final two pupils are allowed to use a calculator. The grading’s are 9-1 overall with questions targeted at grades 1-5 at foundation level and 4-9 at the higher tier. Currently a grade 4 is equivalent to the old grade C.

The curriculum now emphasises the importance of mathematical reasoning and problem solving. All the pupils at Sevenhills are encouraged to engage with GCSE maths through the provision of personalised lessons which endeavour to make maths fun through enabling the pupils to think for themselves.

BTEC Science  

The economic wealth and health of our society depends on the on the identification and development of the next generation of Scientists. Through science education young people have the opportunity to contribute to this and in doing so play an active role in our wellbeing. The primary science course offered by Sevenhills Academy is BTEC Principles of Applied Science. It is equivalent to GCSE Science but has a slightly different focus in that it looks at science in a vocational context. Very few jobs exist that do not require a good understanding of biology, chemistry and physics, and the BTEC course is most suited to providing this. Whether you are a budding nurse, or wish for a career in engineering, food processing or in the chemical industry the BTEC will provide you with the basic skills to develop your interest and knowledge. The course is assessed by both coursework and examination. It offers the advantage that the exam can be taken twice, and hence reduces the pressure on terminal examination. Coursework can be completed up to distinction (A*) standard. If you want to research evidence for the Big Bang, or look at how humankind is changing the environment, or perhaps look at the worldwide threat of antibiotic resistance, this is the course for you.

The other qualifications we offer are Functional Skills Maths, Functional Skills English, BTEC Science, BTEC Health and Social Care, BTEC Sport, IFS Finance.

ECDL

The BCS Level 2 ECDL Certificate in IT Application Skills qualification is equivalent to a GCSE and consists of four mandatory units at Level 2, Word Processing Software, Spreadsheet Software, Presentation Software, and Improving Productivity using IT. The learner must pass all four mandatory units to be awarded the qualification. This qualification is designed for young people who are looking to gain knowledge and skills of IT software applications to progress their learning in IT, or any subject where basic IT skills are required. This qualification covers core IT applications commonly used in many organisations around the world.  

Completing this qualification will improve learners understanding of key IT applications and teach them how to use the software efficiently. They will learn how to choose the right software application and use different techniques to get a job done. It enables learners to use a computer confidently and effectively, and encourages problem-solving, creativity and communication. The qualification provides learners with skills to improve productivity through IT and enables them to review and adapt their on-going use of IT tools and systems to make sure that activities are successful.

NCFE Art

The NCFE Level 2 Certificate in Art and Design qualification is equivalent to a GCSE and has been accredited by the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF) and consists of 3 mandatory units and 4 optional units. To achieve the NCFE Level 2 in Art and Design learners must successfully demonstrate their achievements of all learning outcomes and assessment criteria detailed in this Qualification.

This qualification aims to develop learners’ skills, techniques, use of visual language and formal elements in art and design. It will also extend learners’ knowledge and understanding of the design process, extend learners’ understanding of health and safety issues relating to art and design process. Also aim to provide the opportunity for personal development and provide a basis for progression onto further study. In line with these aims, the objectives of the qualification are to enable the learner to use raw materials, tools and equipment safely and competently. To develop analytical and research skills, evaluate own work, develop ideas and learning through the design process. Provide evidence of key skills attainment, where appropriate.

BTEC Health and Social Care

The Health and Social Care course is specially tailored for the individual leaner and can be taken over 1 or 2 years. The course is delivered as a Level 2 CERTIFICATE which is equivalent to 2 GSCE`s.

The CERTIFICATE course has 4 units and 2 exams which includes a units on The Human Lifespan ~ the life stages when growing up (The Exam), Health and Social Care Values ~ how people are treated such as respect, dignity, confidentiality and safeguarding, Effective Communication in Health and Social Care ~ how we communicate with others, Human Body Systems – how the human body works, Creative and Therapeutic Activities in Health and Social Care ~ understand how professionals support and encourage individuals to take part in activities to benefit their health and Healthy Lifestyles ~ what is a healthy diet and understanding the negative effects of smoking, drinking alcohol, and unsafe sex. (The Exam). This course provides an opportunity for work experience in a school environment or other health and social care settings depending on the needs of the student and offers vocational learning.

GCSE Finance

Finance is a GCSE subject which offers the students an opportunity to gain a Level 2 Certificate in Personal Finance. It has been designed for people who are, or who will shortly be starting on a period of life when they can no longer depend on others for their financial provision. The students will consider the legal and practical constraints on the sources and uses of money; the methods of organising their money through personal budgeting; the use of appropriate bank and building society accounts and the consequences of overspending or debt. This subject offers students the ability to learn about future money management whilst equipping them with the transferable skills they will require in adulthood to be independent. This qualification is currently assessed by online exams which provides an overall assessment grade.

Functional Skills

Functional Skills Maths promotes mathematical thinking and transferable skills rather than rote learning. Students learn that math’s is useful in everyday situations and the world of work. Students cover units such as number, equations and probability which builds learners’ confidence with the core skills required for employment, including the capacity to problem solve and use technology effectively.  Students gain a level 1 or 2 qualification.

Functional Skills English encourages learners to develop their English skills and transfer them in ways that are appropriate to their situation. Learners achieve an accreditation of achievement by learning a range of English skills in real-life settings so learners can use subject skills in a functional way throughout life. Assessments are broken down into three units Reading, writing and speaking and listening this provides a flexible assessment structure that can be adapted to meet the needs of individual learners. Students gain a level 1 or 2 qualification.

All students have weekly sessions of PSHE, PE, Food Technology and interventions to ensure all their needs are met and they have the opportunity for social and emotional development.

PSHCE

Personal, Social, Health, Citizenship Education helps to give children and young people the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to lead confident, healthy and independent lives. It aims to help them understand how they are developing personally and socially, tackling many of the moral, social and cultural issues which are affecting them as they grow into adulthood. The course is delivered in three aspects including Relationship Education, Substance Misuse Awareness and Stress and Mental Health Awareness. The short courses are aimed at awareness levels which are certificated at Level 1.

SMSC is the foundation of all our practice and is evident not only in every lesson but throughout the Academy day. We run several successful community learning days where we plan activities and projects with local charities and businesses to develop our learning outside the classroom and prepare our students for life in modern Britain.

A bespoke curriculum has been developed with Wellspring Academy Trust to support vulnerable students at Key Stage 3. This includes Maths, English, Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning (SEAL), Food Technology and PE; also included is ‘Elements’ modelled on Springwell Academy’s ‘Blended Curriculum’ which is a response to teacher frustration over the ‘off the shelf’ curriculum we had previously been using, which was not meeting the needs of our cohort of pupils. Teachers wanted the opportunity to develop their own themes in such a way as to ensure they were engaging for the needs of all pupils.

More information on these qualifications can be found at:

www.wjec.co.uk
www.aqa.co.uk
www.ncfe.org.uk
www.edexcel.com