Mathematics

Teaching Staff:

Mr Hewson
MrsPoole
Mr White
Mrs Walsh
Mrs Gavin
Mr Zulfiqar
Miss Whitaker

Subject Overview:

Mathematics is a core subject in many careers and further education pathways. The mathematics department are completely devoted to ensuring that all students maximise their progress in maths, enabling them to have the best possible opportunities in further education or employment when they leave school. As a team we work hard to develop inquisitive, enthusiastic and confident mathematicians who share our love of the subject and are equipped with problem solving and reasoning skills to prepare them for adult life.

Key Stage 3:

Our KS3 scheme of work is focused around the core elements of number, algebra, geometry and measure, probability and statistics. The curriculum is designed to develop fluency, reasoning and problem solving skills in maths, building on the knowledge of basic skills students arrive with from primary school. As a team we ensure that our KS3 lessons are challenging and engaging in order to develop students passion for maths and to set them on the path for excellence at GCSE.

Key Stage 4:

Students will follow a three year scheme of work at KS4 that culminates in two external examinations at the end of year 11. One of these is a calculator paper and one is a non-calculator paper. We currently follow the Edexcel syllabus for students who are sitting the higher tier exam and the OCR syllabus for students who are sitting the foundation tier. Students are set regular assessments throughout the programme of study, which the maths department use to track their progress and ensure that lessons and regular home works are personalised and tailored to meet their needs.

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English

Teaching Staff:
Mr Pearcy (Head of Subject)
Miss Black
Miss Coldwell
Miss Taylor
Miss O’Neill
Mrs Ardery
Miss Dover
Mrs Onslow
Miss Ryan

Subject Overview:

The exciting new curriculum for KS3 is based on a thematic approach, allowing the students to study a rich a diverse range of texts, thoroughly preparing them for the GCSE units. Students develop their skills in the spoken and written word, developing an understanding of how to express themselves through a variety of speaking and listening activities, as well as the traditional reading and writing tasks. Students will learn to read and respond to a range of texts and genres. It is made clear to students how important a thorough grasp of the English language is with regards to future education and also in the world of work. As well as this, students are taught social skills such as how to have empathy with another speaker, or how to tackle a difficult subject sensitively as not to offend others.

Key Stage 3:

Students will cover a range of texts and topics across KS3. Year 7 begin by studying texts connected to the theme of memories. In year 8 the initial focus is on crime and punishment and in year 9 students are focused on the them of adventure, discovery and disaster. The department endeavours to select engaging and interesting texts, which are used to teach reading, writing and speaking and listening skills.

Key Stage 4:

To prepare your child for their GCSE examinations in year 11 (2017), s/he will be assessed each half term through year 10 and 11 by using specimen examination papers. The assessments will be carried out in controlled conditions and will be marked according to the GCSE mark scheme as outlined by AQA.
Further information can be found about the new English specifications on the following website: http://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/english/gcse
Supporting your son/daughter
Students should be encouraged to read the texts studied in English at home.
The texts your son/daughter will need a detailed understanding of are as follows:
• William Shakespeare: Macbeth (Shakespeare play)
• Charles Dicken: A Christmas Carol
• J.B Priestley: An Inspector Calls (Modern texts)
Any revision guide endorsed by AQA English Language (8700) and English Literature (8702) will support your son/daughter in preparing for his/her examinations. Students should be encouraged to revise spelling, punctuation and grammar rules when editing pieces of extended writing.
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Business Studies

Teaching Staff:
Mr Summers
Mr Giles
Miss Morgan
The Business department strives to ensure that all students who follow the course acquire the skills and experience necessary to work for/or run their own business. We have engaging lessons that are taught by experienced teachers and this subject provides an excellent progression pathway to further study and work. Many of our year 13 students move on to study Business at University.

Key Stage 3: N/A

Key Stage 4:

At Key Stage 4 students follow the Cambridge Nationals Award in Business and Enterprise. This is a respected qualification and gives all students the opportunity to plan and run their own businesses; these have taken many forms from upcycling, to soft drinks, to building computers or providing personal training.

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Religious Education

Teaching staff:

Mr Fox
Ms Reeves
Ms Hussian
Mr Farquharson

Subject overview:

Religious Education is a core subject at the Academy. RE or Issues and Beliefs (KS4) affords students the opportunity to formulate their own judgements and consider other worldviews on a wide range of social issues as well as analysing the core beliefs of world faiths such as Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism and Judaism. Teachers of RE at the Academy take a challenging, skills based approach to delivering the subject. Students analyse the impact of world faiths on individuals and wider society, they also evaluate the differing views towards diverse topics such as Euthanasia, Children’s Rights and Expressing belief.

Key Stage 3:

The key stage 3 curriculum is based around a locally agreed syllabus with original units of learning developed by outstanding RE teachers in the Academy. Year 7 explore a wide range of beliefs and worldviews. Engaging units of learning range from the history of belief and religion to expressing belief through art. Year 8 explore the big questions of how the world was created, who or what is God and moving on to studying the problem of prejudice and discrimination in today’s society. Year 9 explore units of learning based around religious views on human rights, animal rights and different ethical issues in today’s society such as medical ethics, war and the right to kill. All units of learning prepare students for their GCSE in this subject.

Key stage 4:

At key stage 4 students follow the WJEC board specification. Students study two units based around eight topics. In year ten they study Unit 1 content based around the topics of Our World, Is it Fair, Relationships and Looking for meaning. In year 11 they study Unit 2 content based around the topics of Conflict, Authority, Medicine and Expression. Each unit has a 1 hour 45 minute exam both of which are assessed at the end of year 11 leading to a GCSE qualification in Religious Education.

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Art and Design

Teaching Staff:

Miss Wild
Mrs Wyatt
Miss Williams
Mr MacMichael

Subject Overview:

The Art and Design department strive to ensure all students obtain a GCSE in either Art or Textiles by the end of KS4. We aim to develop the drawing and painting skills of all our students. Art is a broad subject and students can study a variety of techniques including; 3D design, Textiles, Photography, Graphics and Illustration. Art is a very popular, with many students choosing to continue the subject in KS5.

Key Stage 3:

Art and Design students study a wide range of subjects in KS3. The topics covered are Vincent Van Gogh, Portraits, Pop Art, Architecture, Aboriginal Art, Franz Marc and Egyptian Art. We ensure all students study core skills, to prepare them for GCSE.

Key Stage 4:

At the Academy of Saint Francis of Assisi we follow the AQA syllabus in Art and Design. It is a very popular option subject, with some students choosing to specialise in Textiles. The course is completed over 3 years, ending with a 10 hour exam. Unit 1 (portfolio work) is worth 60% of the mark and Unit 2 (exam) is 40%. We study the following topics; Mexican Day of the Dead, Pop Art, Natural Forms, Fairytales and Sea Life.

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Social Sciences

Teaching Staff:

Miss Sedgwick

Subject Overview:

The social sciences department ocver two level 2 qualifcations – GCSE Psychology and level 2 BTEC Health and Social Care. Psychology provides students with a scientific understanding of why people do the things they do and allow students to see the practical applications of psychological research. Health and Social Care teaches learners about the underlying principles in health and social care and the wider context of the services we use.

Key Stage 3: N/A

Key Stage 4:

At the Academy of St Francis of Assisi, GCSE Psychology students study the AQA specification. Our students will study topics including communication, memory, aggression and prejudice and discrimination. In health and social care our students student the Pearson level 2 BTEC. This consists of 3 coursework based unit and external exam titled “Human lifespan and development”.

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Food and Nutrition

Teaching Staff:

Mrs Bentley
Miss Millar
Mrs Wyatt
Mr Middleton

Subject Overview:

The Food and Nutrition department allows all students to succeed . We aim to develop practical and theoretical knowledge that will equip students for the KS4 curriculum and beyond. We do this by having high expectations of all students attainment and personal conduct.
Our department has the following aims:
To create an environment where there is an emphasis on success and potential, and where all individuals and their achievements are valued and celebrated.
To develop a broad and balanced curriculum which encompasses a wide range of learning experiences and reflects the need of the local community.
To continually develop staff skills and provide a modern and diverse curriculum.
To develop an understanding of technological processes and products, their manufacture and their contribution to our society.
To foster enjoyment, satisfaction and purpose in designing and making things.

Key Stage 3: N/A

Key Stage 4:
The Academy uses a variety of teaching and learning styles in Food and Nutrition lessons. The principle aim is to develop pupil’s knowledge, skills and understanding in the subject. Teachers ensure that the pupils apply their knowledge and understanding when developing ideas, planning and making products, and then evaluating them. We do this through a mixture of whole-class teaching and individual or group activities. Within lessons, we give pupils the opportunity both to work on their own and to collaborate with others, listening to other pupil’s ideas and to treat these with respect. Pupils critically evaluate existing products, their own work and that of others. They have the opportunity to use a wide range of materials and resources, including ICT.

At the Academy of St Francis of Assisi we follow the WJEC syllabus in Food & Nutrition. Our students complete a full course GCSE and will be examined on 2 practical examinations and coursework and 1 theory examination at the end of year 11. GCSE students have free access to food facilities during lunchtimes and after school.

Structured sessions and boosters are provided for students failing to achieve their target grades and additional monitoring procedures implemented.

Controlled Assessment study support sessions are available at specific times throughout the year after school, half-term and Easter. G&T sessions are also structured to support those students aspiring to achieve the highest grades.
Task 1 : Afternoon Tea
Task 2 – International cuisine and prepare and make a two course meal.

For the theory exam students build knowledge over the 3 years about the catering industry, nutrition, cooking methods, presentation, environment, Food laws.

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Science

Teaching Staff:
Miss Boylan (Head of Department)
Mrs Pugh (Assistant Head Science)
Mrs Sherlock
Mr Drane
Miss Eley-Baylon
Miss Robinson
Mr Wishart
Mr MacMichael

Subject Overview:

Studying Science will encourage you to be inspired, motivated and challenged by following a broad, coherent, practical, satisfying and worthwhile course. Scientists try to explain phenomena and solve problems using evidence.
Science will prepare you for a job that will put you in the driving seat; giving you skills and knowledge to improve the world around us, and even the future of the planet.
Here at The Academy of St Francis of Asissi, we aim to encourage a deeper understanding of the world around them through stimulating and engaging contexts. Science is a practical subject and through the medium of practical investigations pupils are encouraged to work collaboratively, logically and independently.

Key Stage 3:

At key stage 3 we deliver a scheme which breaks down the content into structured modules based around key areas of biology, chemistry and physics. The curriculum provides a wide range of topics and opportunities which meet the needs of all of our students and which equips the students with skills that will enhance their attainment at key stage 4.
The main focus at key stage 3 is to engage students with thought provoking, enjoyable lessons. We want students to be enthusiastic about their learning and develop a thirst to learn more at GCSE.

Key Stage 4:

We follow the Edexcel syllabus in Science. Our students will complete the full course GCSE and will be examined on Biology, Chemistry and Physics for both Core and Additional Science. There examination will include; B1 Influences in life, C1 Chemistry in our world, P1 Universal Physics, B2 The components of life, C2 Discovering Chemistry and P2 Physics for your future.
GCSE Combined Science (New Specification) This new combined science course is designed to give all students a broad understanding of all three sciences at a level that will allow you to be an effective citizen in the 21st century and also leads to further study in science. It follows similar content to that of the core and additional pathway but includes a lot more detail and content.
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Music

Teaching Staff:
Head of Music: Mr Stewart
Guitar/Bass/Composition Teacher: Mr Carey
Piano Teachers: Miss Jones and Miss Smith
Singing Teacher: Miss Bradshaw
Drum Teacher: Mr Stewart

Subject Overview:

The music department is a vibrant and lively department with students’ keen to achieve their potential. We strive to ensure students are successful and obtain a GSCE qualification at the end of KS4. We aim to develop essential creative skills; such as performing, composing and listening, underpinned by theoretical knowledge and understanding. Music is a popular choice at GCSE and students also benefit from extra musical tuition from our specialist instrumental teachers once a week. There is also a range of extra-curricular music provision in place such as; ASFA Samba Bateria, Vocalize, Music Production, Keyboard Skills, Guitar Skills and general practise opportunities within the department. Students are also involved in many performance performance opportunities in and out of school.

Key Stage 3:

The KS3 music curriculum explores practical music-making as a priority. Developing confidence and creativity early on is essential to being successful at GCSE. Students explore these projects; Body Percussion, Vocalising and Beat Boxing, African Music, Ukulele/Guitar Skills, Keyboard Skills, Ensemble Skills and Samba Drumming. These projects provide opportunities to study a range of instruments, genres and traditions from around the world.

Key Stage 4:

The KS4 music curriculum focuses on four main strands; performing, composing, listening and appraising. The weighting for these areas is 30%, 30% and 40%. Throughout the course you complete two performances: one solo and one ensemble; two compositions: one in a style given by the exam board and one in a style of your choice; an appraisal of one of your compositions using musical terminology and a 90 minute listening exam analysing a range of styles and traditions from around the world. You will specialise on one instrument and be expected to practise regularly as well as attending one of the extra- curricular ensembles. The students who are most successful in this subject are the students who immerse themselves in as many music-making opportunities as possible.

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History

Teaching Staff:
Miss Allen – Head of History
Mr Roche
Miss Roscetti

Subject Overview:

History is a popular subject at the Academy and pupils have the opportunity to study both ancient and modern periods, across different continents. History also gives our pupils a strong background in politics, economics and social justice.

Key Stage 3:

Our KS3 curriculum provides a firm foundation to study History further at GCSE. Pupils study topics such as Ancient Greece, the Romans, Victorian London (through an investigation of Jack the Ripper) and Black Peoples of the Americas. As well as solid subject knowledge, skills such as source analysis, handling interpretations and essay writing are embedded in KS3 lessons.

Key Stage 4:

At KS4 pupils study the WJEC Modern World History Specification A syllabus. Currently, this involves an outline study of Germany 1919 – 1990 as well as in-depth studies of the USA 1920 – 1929 and the Making of Modern Britain, 1951 – 1979. Pupils also write 2 pieces of coursework in Year 11 which accounts for 25% of their final mark.

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ICT/Computing

Teaching Staff:
Miss Turner
Mrs Barrett
Mrs Talbot

Subject Overview:

The ICT/Computing department teach students the principles of information and computational thinking and how to apply this knowledge in their programming. Pupils are equipped to make informed decisions in a digital world and know how to report any concerns they may have. Students are taught to combine digital material from a range of sources to create content that is suitable for a specified purpose and audience. Through this they become capable and creative users of a range of technologies.

Key Stage 3:

At KS3 students are taught how to be digitally literate including how to keep themselves and their data safe online.
Students will also be able to analyse data and information and combine digital artefacts in a variety of formats to suit a range of purposes.
Computing skills include the ability to understand and construct algorithms and use logic to explain how they work. Students will also be able to design and create simple programs to fulfil specific functions and to debug any errors that may occur.

Key Stage 4:

We follow the Cambridge Nationals syllabus for ICT. Cambridge Nationals are designed specifically for students aged 14–16. They’re industry-relevant, geared to key sector requirements and very popular with schools and colleges because they suit such a broad range of learning styles and abilities and are an excellent start for vocational study and enable progression to Level 3 qualifications.
Students will follow the OCR GCSE syllabus for Computing which will teach them to:
*develop their understanding of current and emerging technologies
*acquire and apply a knowledge, some technical skills and an understanding of the use of algorithms in computer programs to solve problems using programming
*use their knowledge and understanding of computer technology to become independent and discerning users of IT, able to make informed decisions about the use and be aware of the implications of different technologies
*acquire and apply creative and technical skills, knowledge and understanding of IT in a range of contexts

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Design and Technology

Teaching Staff:
Mrs Wyatt (Head of Subject)
Mr Middleton
Mr Woolley

Subject Overview:

The Design & Technology department develop the skills, knowledge and understanding of students through a range of projects. Students develop their awareness of how design and technology can improve or meet the needs of people within society. Students will learn to become problems solvers and creative thinkers, which leads to the development of design ideas for a range of products. Research and investigating consumer’s views and market research is integral to the design process. Students will use a wide range skills and knowledge to create practical prototypes of their ideas and bring their ideas into reality.

Key Stage 3:

The Design & Technology department strive to develop the knowledge, skills and understanding of students to succeed at KS3 and onto KS4. Students will experience a range of projects that develop their design skills, problem solving, creative thinking and practical skills. Students will develop their personal skills through independent learning, team work and organisational skills. Projects covered are clocks, bird boxes, wooden puzzle and mood light.

Key Stage 4:

KS4 students will follow the AQA specification in Resistant Materials. Students produce a portfolio of coursework and a practical outcome based on the topic set by the exam board. The coursework involves research, investigations, designing, planning, making and evaluations. Coursework is 60% of the overall grade with an external examination 40%.

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Geography

Teaching Staff:
Mr Roche
Miss Wilson
Mrs Moore

Subject Overview:

In Geography we are currently working to upgrade the curriculum to make it more varied and exciting for all of our learners. We aim to develop a lifelong interest in the subject in its many forms. We live in a much smaller world than ever before and our aim is to provide our students with the necessary geographical knowledge and skills required of them to be successful within it. So, be your interest in sport, coasts, travel, tectonics or shopping, geography is a subject which can help you understand the world we live in and how it works.

Key Stage 3:

The aims for KS3 Geography are twofold; to develop a sense of curiosity and interest in the subject, and to teach the knowledge and skills students will need in order to be successful in KS4. Topics covered in Year 7 include; Development, Travel and Fashion. Year 8 topics include; Crime, Ecosystems, Coasts and Sport. The knowledge and skills gained during this study will equip the pupils with what they need to progress onto KS4 Geography, and to understand the modern world they live in.

Key Stage 4:

The KS4 curriculum follows the AQA Syllabus A GCSE. It is examined with two examination papers, one of Physical Geography and one on Human Geography. As well as these examinations here is a Controlled Assessment piece completed in class. The Human topics covered are; Globalisation, Tourism, Changing Urban Environment and Population. Physical topics covered are; Tectonics, Coasts and Ecosystems.

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Modern Foreign Languages

Teaching Staff:
Miss Desabraz
Mrs Hawley

Subject Overview:

The Modern Foreign Languages department aims to create a vibrant and engaging learning environment. We encourage the engagement with the subject by organising experiences where students can be completely emmersed in languages. Students also learn about the cultures of the places where the languages are spoken. The curriculum is based around real life situations both in a leisure and business context. Students will have access to many different resources including interactive ICT resources, DVDs and CDs.

Key Stage 3:

At key stage 3 the students are introduced to languages through Spanish. All students study a range of different contexts including holidays, school and talking about yourself. The students follow the Mira scheme of work and this includes an accelerated pathway for students wishing to study a language at GCSE.

Key Stage 4:

AQA GCSE Spanish and/or French: Students will learn how to understand and communicate in another language in a range of contexts. Students will learn how to use their literacy, numeracy, ICT, personal, learning and thinking skills in order to make progress in their language learning.

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Drama

Teaching Staff:
Mrs Ousey (Head of Subject)
Miss Heron

Subject Overview:

As much as Drama is about performance, it is also crucial that our students learn the skills necessary to equip them for life – cooperation, respect, team-building, listening, communicating, evaluating – these skills are an inherent part of the Drama curriculum, across all the key stages. We aim to foster within students an enthusiasm for the arts, nurtured through extra-curricular projects, theatre trips and visits from leading practitioners.

Key Stage 3:

From the beginning of Year 7, the focus is on developing basic drama techniques, from physical theatre to working cohesively as an ensemble. Students enjoy learning through role-play, as we explore topics like Elizabethan theatre, where students are given the opportunity to discover some of Shakespeare’s best-known plays. ‘Survivors’ is another unit we cover where students investigate being stranded on a mystery island. The curriculum is revised yearly to meet the needs of the students, but always covers a wide scope of skills and topics and enables them to start Year 8 with a solid drama foundation. In Year 8, we look at classic genres, like slapstick comedy and the western – these units are always popular for their physicality, and their universal appeal. Year 8s also deal with more serious topics, like 9/11 and we begin to look at scripts, in readiness for the GCSE course.

Key Stage 4:

Year 9 is our foundation GCSE year, where students who have chosen Drama as an option get the chance to look at more long-term, mini-GCSE style projects. They are introduced to the classic Italian masked drama of commedia dell’arte, devising from a given stimulus, and also look at a script in more detail. Unlike Key Stage 3, where students perform several short pieces over a term, at Key Stage 4, our students create their performances over a term, building on previous lessons’ work, refining and polishing their performances until they are happy with their work. In Year 10, we perform a scripted piece, working on characterisation and ensemble performance, as well as creating drama from scratch. This is further developed in Year 11, when students work towards their moderation performances, and the final written exam. There is more focus on written work at Key Stage 4, as the written component of the curriculum will be worth 60% of the student’s grade from 2017 onwards.