Year 10 Curriculum (2019-21 Cohort)

Core Curriculum

All students study the following core curriculum; across Britain and when combined with other optional subjects, they are considered to be of the utmost importance in the education of young people.

English Language

Through the study of English Language students will:
– Learn how to analyse texts
– Understand how writers create meaning through their use of language and structure
– Create own texts, developing skills in narrative, descriptive and non-fiction writing
– Develop skills in speaking and listening to a variety of audiences

Course breakdown
Paper 1: Exploration in Creative Reading and Writing 50%
• Reading fiction text and writing to describe and narrate

Paper 2: Writer’s Viewpoints and Perspectives 50%
• Comparing non-fiction texts and writing to express a point of view

Non-examination assessment: Spoken Language 0%

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8700
Course Specification English Language
Exam Component 100%

English Literature

Through the study of English Literature students will:
– Explore a variety of texts including poetry, plays and prose
– Learn about the context of the texts studied, covering a wide historical range and encompassing different cultures, religions and social contexts
– Study a selection of texts in real depth and develop your own interpretations of them

Course breakdown
Paper 1: Shakespeare and the 19th century novel 40%
• Study of Macbeth or Romeo and Juliet, and The Sign of Four or Jekyll and Hyde

Paper 2: Modern Texts and Poetry 60%
• Study of a modern novel or play and a range of poetry from different periods

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8702
Course Specification English Literature
Exam Component 100%


There will be an increased emphasis placed on problem solving. Students will need to be able to use and apply maths in other contexts, interpreting and evaluating results and solutions. Good mathematical reasoning and communication skills will also be important so students can present arguments clearly through both method and results.

The course has an examination time with a minimum of 4.5 hours of exam time being specified. Topics and areas covered by the specifications include:
• Number skills
• Algebra
• Ratio, proportion and rates of change
• Geometry and measures
• Probability
• Statistics

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8300
Course Specification Mathematics
Exam Component 100%

Students study either GCSE Combined Science Trilogy, or they will study separate sciences GCSE Biology, GCSE Chemistry and GCSE Physics. A decision will be made in discussion with and guided by the teachers of the department. All students start by following the same programme of study with the courses diverging part-way through Year 10.

Combined Science Trilogy

The GCSE Combined Science Trilogy course will enable students to build upon the topics that they have studied in Year 7, 8 and 9. Students will study a range of biology, chemistry and physics topics including:


• Cell biology

• Bioenergetics

• Ecology


• Atomic structure

• Chemical changes

• Organic chemistry


• Energy

• Waves

• Magnetism and electromagnetism

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8464
Course Specification Science Combined
Exam Component 100%


Separate Sciences – Biology, Chemistry & Physics

Students who choose to study the separate sciences will cover all of the same exciting topics from the GCSE Combined Science course but in greater detail.

Separate Sciences – Biology
• Organisation
• Infection and response
• Inheritance, variation and evolution

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8461
Course Specification Biology
Exam Component 100%

Separate Sciences – Chemistry
• Bonding, structure and the properties of materials
• Quantitative chemistry
• Chemistry of the atmosphere

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8462
Course Specification Chemistry
Exam Component 100%

Separate Sciences – Physics
• Forces
• Electricity
• Particle model of matter

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8463
Course Specification Physics
Exam Component 100%

Common Curriculum

All students follow a common curriculum of mandatory subjects. These are not examined, but form an integral part of a broad and balanced curriculum that aims to develop the whole student, including an understanding of and appreciation for values and beliefs within our country’s society.

Physical Education

Text to follow

Personal, social, health & careers education

The programme supports the aims of the school and in particular the creation of a social ethos which encourages students to feel secure, and to be tolerant and respectful towards each other, and to give students the maximum opportunity to develop all their abilities.

The teaching of discrete PSHE and Citizenship is delivered to students across the school in tutor groups once every two weeks. Through this programme we aim to equip students with the skills, knowledge and understanding necessary to develop an understanding of and respect for themselves, to develop a healthy lifestyle, learning how to recognise and manage risks and how to make safe and healthy choices, to develop effective and fulfilling relationships and to respect the needs and rights of others, and to develop an understanding of our society and local community and learn how to play an active part in community life.

Optional Courses

Students are provided with extensive information, advice and guidance through the options process and choose further courses from the following selection. Guided by, and in discussion with teachers, students study an additional three or four courses; this may depend on the number of courses they take as part of their core curriculum. Students’ choice of language is also guided and a number study more than one.

The following examined courses are available as part of the options scheme.


The course is divided into two units of work: a portfolio and an examination. The portfolio consists of class-based projects that contribute 60% of the final mark. The final unit is the examined unit which is worth 40% of the final mark.

The portfolio unit is completed after Christmas in Year 11 and the examination unit then begins. Students have up to ten weeks to develop their projects before completing a final piece in examination conditions over a 10 hour period. To successfully undertake the course students need good KS3 results and a commitment to producing independent work, along with a passion for the subject.

Exam Board OCR
Specification J171
Course Specification Art (Fine Art)
Exam Component 40%
Controlled Assessment 60%

GCSE Business

GCSE provides an excellent foundation for students who have an interest in Business. GCSE Business provides students with a practical insight into how businesses operate and is a really valuable subject whether students are keen to pursue their studies at a higher level or whether they are looking to enter the workplace through completing apprenticeship or relevant work experience.

Students are assessed through two formal exams.
Unit One: Influences on Operations and Human Resource Management on Business Activity (50%)
Unit Two: Influences of Marketing and Finance on Business Activity (50%)

Students will study key topics in both Year 10 and Year 11:

• Business in the Real World: The purpose and nature of business, business aims and objectives and types of business ownership.

• influences on Business: Technology, ethical and environmental considerations, the economy and legislation.

• Business Operations: The production process, the concept of quality and the provision of good customer service.

• Human Resources: Organisation structures, recruitment and selection of employees, motivation of employees and staff training.

• Marketing: Market segmentation, the purpose and methods of market research and elements of the marketing mix.

• Finance: Sources of finance available to business, cash-flow, financial terms and calculations and analysing the financial performance of a business.

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8132
Course Specification Business
Exam Component 100%

NCFE Level 2 Technical Award in Business & Enterprise

The Level 2 Technical Award in Business and Enterprise provides an excellent grounding in the basics and business and enterprise. The qualification provides both an academic and vocational element to study and will assess students through both internally and externally assessed coursework activities.

As part of the course students will be required to carry out market research, interview local business and produce a business project that they will present to the class.

Students will visit local businesses to help them carry out market research and will listen to presentations from guest speakers.
The Level 2 Technical Award is an ideal introduction to business and enterprise and offers a good starting point for students to continue with their studies in business to a higher level.

Students will be assessed through completing for key mandatory units including:

• Unit One: Introduction to Business & Enterprise: internally assessed portfolio of evidence

• Unit Two: Marketing in Business & Enterprise: externally assessed assignment

• Unit Three: Finance for Business & Enterprise: internally assessed portfolio of evidence

• Unit Four: Plan, develop and participate in a business or enterprise project: internally assessed portfolio of evidence.

Exam Board NCFE – V Cert
Course Specification Business & Enterprise
Controlled Assessment 100%

Level 2 CACHE Award in Child Development and Care

The course is a vocational course which sets students up for further study at Key Stage 5 or to move into employment through apprenticeships. There are three units to the course, two of which are assessed through the production of portfolios, the third encompassing an external exam.
Unit 1 focuses on planning and preparing to work with children aged 0-5 and as such looks at best practice, activities which promote the development of children and the role of observations in demonstrating the development of children over time. Students will gain an understanding of the importance of catering for individual needs of children in order to facilitate development.

Unit 2 looks at how children develop between the ages of 0-5. The unit covers the different strands of development, for example physical and emotional and looks at how these develop and factors which can affect these development strands. This unit also looks at the role and use of care routines as well as supporting children through transition points and events in their lives.

Students are assessed externally at the end of the course through a short exam (Unit 3) which also covers elements of both portfolio units.

Course SpecificationCACHE Award in Child Development and Care
Exam Component5%
Controlled Assessment95%

GCSE Computer Science

Computer science is the study of modern computing devices and how they work. If you enjoy programming, solving problems and understanding how computers work then this could be the course for you. 

The course consists of two examinations:

Paper 1

• Fundamentals of algorithms

• Programming

• Fundamentals of data representation

• Computer Systems

Paper 2

• Fundamentals of data representation

• Computer Systems

• Fundamentals of computer networks

• Fundamentals of computer security

• Ethical, legal and environmental impacts of digital technology

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8520
Course Specification Computer Science
Exam Component 100%

Level 2 Cambridge National Certificate in Creative iMedia

The Level 2 Cambridge National in Creative iMedia will equip students with a range of IT and digital media skills to enable them to progress onto sixth form or college Level 3 courses in either IT or Digital Media. This is a vocational course which involves creating digital applications such as computer games, digital animations and digital graphics. Students will also develop transferrable skills such as research, planning, designing and evaluating.

The course consists of four units of study. Each unit is worth 25% of the overall grade:

• Unit R081: Pre-Production Skills – Examination

• Unit R082: Creating Digital Graphics – Coursework

• Unit R086: Creating Digital Animation – Coursework

• Unit R092: Creating Digital Games – Coursework

Exam Board OCR
Specification J817
Course Specification Creative iMedia
Exam Component 25%
Controlled Assessment 75%

GCSE Design and Technology

Students develop the knowledge, skills and understanding of Design & Technology within an overall design and make approach to everyday products. The students design and manufacture products using a combination of wood, metal, plastic, composite and smart materials. Typical examples of products include: contemporary lighting, house signage, bespoke furniture, etc.

The course will enable students to understand and appreciate the design and manufacture of products, making a more discerning purchaser. It will help students to be creative in their approach and will use a range of design techniques to design and create products including CAD/CAM.
During Y10, students will work with a variety of materials on a range of small projects. Alongside the practical element they will build upon their knowledge and understanding of the core technical principles used in Design & Technology.

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8552
Course Specification Design and Technology
Exam Component 50%
Controlled Assessment 50%

GCSE Drama

The course studies dramatical techniques and skills found within and around modern and historical productions. In addition, students can opt to develop technical skills such as; sound and lighting. The diverse nature of drama allows for those who prefer backstage or production roles to gain a recognised qualification for doing so without the pressure to perform.

The first year of study involves developing understanding of a variety of practitioners, followed by a devising unit where students work with a variety of stimuli. Practical work is supported by development log coursework. Students will need to visit live theatre.

In the second year, pupils explore set text through a series of workshops. They will examine the text in a variety of ways. This year also involves developing evaluative skills as well as completing another performance unit, assessed by a visiting examiner. For their final performance, students can offer performance or support for two extracts from a published play.  Students will need to visit live theatre.

The subject itself does require a good aptitude for English skills, including textual analysis and as such, some students may struggle to cope with the demands of the written content, but support is provided. Drama continues to help form the backbone of transferrable work life skills and as such provides an avenue into many future career paths. If students have a real passion for drama, the course is well suited for further study at A-Level.

Unit 1 – Understanding drama. 40% of GCSE. 1:45hr Written exam.

Unit 2 – Devising drama. 40% of GCSE. Unit 2 looks at creating, analysis of own work and evaluation.

Unit 3 – Texts in practice. 20% of GCSE. Students will perform 2 extracts from a published play to an external examiner.

GCSE Drama is delivered in units within school, with various modern and traditional texts being used as focus points. Students have the chance to perform in front of their peers and external audiences in a variety of forms as well as undertaking responsibility within Drama club and visiting the theatre on a regular basis.

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8261
Course Specification Drama
Exam Component 60%
Controlled Assessment 40%

Level 2 Award in Engineering

Level 2 Award in Engineering focus on applied learning, i.e. acquiring and applying knowledge, skills and understanding through purposeful tasks set in a context that will have many of the characteristics of real work. Everything students will learn is centred on three key areas: engineering design, producing engineering products and solving engineering problems. For example, students will learn how to analyse a product so they can see what features make it work and how it meets certain requirements. Students will learn how to take ideas from different products in order to produce a design specification and design ideas for a product. Students will develop the skills needed to work safely with a range of engineering processes, equipment and tools and will use these skills to produce an engineered product. Each unit has an applied purpose which acts as a focus for the authentic work-related learning.

Exam Board WJEC – Eduqas
Specification 9790A1
Course Specification Engineering
Exam Component 25%
Controlled Assessment 75%

GCSE Food Preparation and Nutrition

A qualification in Food Preparation and Nutrition will equip learners with the knowledge, understanding and skills required to cook and apply the principles of nutrition and healthy eating. It encourages learners to cook, as well as make informed decisions about food and nutrition and allows them to acquire knowledge in order to be able to feed themselves and others affordably and nutritiously.

Learners will be able to demonstrate effective and safe cooking skills using a variety of food commodities, as well as understand the characteristics and properties of a range of foods. They will understand the importance of good nutrition, diet and health and how good food choices contribute towards a healthy lifestyle. Furthermore, learners will demonstrate a good understanding of food safety and the role of food science and how it affects the properties of foods.

Teaching begins by ensuring that students have a good solid understanding of how to work in a practical environment, resulting from a series of practical lessons. Alongside this, the key principles of healthy eating and nutrition are reinforced. Students who opt to study food/catering finish with an excellent understanding of food, nutrition and cooking.

Exam Board WJEC Eduqas
Specification C560
Course Specification Food Preparation and Nutrition
Exam Component 50%
Controlled Assessment 50%


GCSE French

The speaking and writing elements of the syllabus form a large part (50%) of the overall GCSE, so students will need to be able to organise their work and time effectively.

Over the course of Key Stage 4, students develop their ability to use an increasing range of vocabulary and to use a number of different tenses.
The course focuses on interesting areas of life, including health, sport, home, friends, relationships, leisure, entertainment, travel, education and work.

Exam Board EdExcel
Specification 1FR0
Course Specification French
Exam Component 100%

GCSE Geography

The course consists of three main units:

Physical Geography: This unit encompasses many aspects of the physical side of the subject. Students will gain an understanding of current issues such as changing climates and managing and sustaining ecosystems. They will also look at natural hazards and physical cycles and systems such as the water cycle. This unit also expands their knowledge of physical landscapes and environments.

Human Geography: This unit brings in elements of economic development with counties and how this is measured and promoted through systems and processes such as Aid. Students also focus on population & environments, including a key study on urban environments. Students will deepen their understanding of the UK as well as issues such as resource reliance and security.

Geographical Skills and Fieldwork: This unit is about developing student’s enquiry, investigative and field study skills, including field work.

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8035
Course Specification Geography
Exam Component 100%

GCSE History

GCSE History will enable students to study the subject through in-depth studies and themes over a period of 2000 years. The subject provides students with the opportunity to study national and international histories and also investigate and explore periods of historical change. The subject focuses on four areas:

• The study in changes of crime and punishment from Anglo-Saxon times to the present day. This topic looks at reasons behind these changes.

• A depth study into The American West, examining the way in which the American West was settled in and developed between 1840-1895.

• A period enquiry into Anglo-Saxon and Norman England Including the build-up to Hastings and how England changed under the Normans.

• A modern world study focusing on Weimar Germany and the rise of the Nazi Party. Students are asked to compare and analyse historical interpretations.

The subject is well-balanced between traditional aspects of history and looking at key events of the 20th century.

Exam Board EdExcel
Specification 1HI0
Course Specification History 
Exam Component 100%


GCSE Media Studies

30% Non-exam assessment – Independently create a media product based on a theme – assessed by teachers
The theme for the non-exam assessment changes each year- students need to be prepared to create anything the exam board picks as their annual theme. We won’t know the topic until June of year 10! Students will be asked to produce a statement of intent and create a media product for an intended audience.

70% Exam – (2 written examinations)
Paper 1 (worth 35% of total GCSE grade) focuses on media industries, audiences (section A) and representation (section B).
Paper 2 (worth 35% of total GCSE grade) focuses on analysing media productions and the theoretical framework using media language (section A) and contexts of the media (section B).

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8572
Course Specification Media
Exam Component 70%
Controlled Assessment 30%

GCSE Music

Unit 1 – 30% – 1 composition of your choice (minimum of 1minute 30secs) & 1 solo performance (minimum of 2 minutes)

Unit 2 – 30% – Group performance with 2 or more live performers (minimum of 2 minutes) & Composition (minimum of 2mins 30 secs)

Unit 3 – 40% – Learn to identify, describe and analyse elements of music, conventions and use of music technology within 4 areas of study: The Concerto Through Time, Rhythms of the World, Film Music, and Conventions of Pop.

Exam Board OCR
Specification J536
Course Specification Music
Exam Component 60%
Controlled Assessment 40%


GCSE Photography

Unit 1- Skills Portfolio
Students will explore a range of techniques. This is an opportunity to develop existing skills to a higher standard and experiment with new ones.

Unit 2- Personal Portfolio
Students are to develop a portfolio of work based on a personal theme, this will involve exploring the work of a chosen artist, recording from observations and experimenting with different processes and developing a story around your chosen theme.

Unit 3- Externally Set Task
Students select a theme from 10 starting points set by the exam board. It follows the same structure as the Personal portfolio but concludes with a 10 hour exam, which takes place over 2 days. In the exam you will create a top quality final piece.

When responding to the titles given in their chosen activities, students learn new skills and a variety of processes and techniques that can be used when making images. We cover:

• taking photographs, exploring imaging techniques such as depth of field, film speed, lighting, exposure and viewpoints

• editing and refining digital images using specialist software

• use of camera equipment, format and lenses

• elementary darkroom practice

• lighting and exposure techniques

• alternative print exposure techniques

• digital manipulation of images (image scanning, use of digital camera), photomontage and story grams.

Exam Board OCR
Specification J173
Course Specification Photography
Exam Component 60%
Controlled Assessment 40%

GCSE Physical Education

60% examination assessed. (2 x Written exam, 1 hr15 mins each exam )

Paper 1:
• Applied anatomy and physiology;
• movement analysis;
• physical training; and movement analysis, use of data.

Paper 2:
• health, fitness and well-being in physical activity and sport;
• sociocultural influences;

40% non-examination assessment (practical performance and controlled assessment)
Students are assessed on their practical performance in three activity areas. These are assessed throughout the course, with a written analysis of performance, focused on one of these three areas. Performance outside of school can be assessed in activities such as equestrian, skiing, dance and numerous others. (Recorded evidence will need to be provided.)

Exam Board AQA
Specification 8582
Course Specification Physical Education
Exam Component 60%
Controlled Assessment 40%


GCSE Religious Studies

GCSE Religious Studies challenges students with questions about belief, value and meaning enabling them to develop their own attitudes towards religious issues in society. Students will also gain an appreciation for how religion, philosophy and ethics form the basis of our culture and British Values.
Religious Studies students develop critical thinking skills, the ability to work with abstract ideas and research and leadership skills that are sought after qualities for potential employers and in higher education. In addition, health professionals, the police force, social workers, teachers and many more professional bodies note Religious Studies as a valuable course because of the insights it provides in working with diverse groups of people.

Theme 1: Relationships

Theme 2: Life and Death

Theme 3: Good and Evil

Theme 4: Human Rights

Beliefs, teachings and practices of Christianity and Islam

Religious, Philosophical and Ethical Studies in the Modern World – 50% 2 hour written exam
Study of Christianity – 25% 1 hour written exam
Study of Islam – 25% 1 hour written exam

Exam Board WJEC – Eduqas
Specification C120P3
Course Specification Religious Studies
Exam Component 100%

GCSE Spanish

The speaking and writing elements of the syllabus form a large part (50%) of the overall GCSE, so students you will need to be able to organise their work and time effectively.

The specification develops students’ ability to converse, whether in written or spoken form, in a number of familiar common topic areas, including:

Generally out and about: visitor information, basic weather, local amenities, accommodation, public transport and directions.

Customer service and transactions: cafés and restaurants, shops, dealing with problems.

Personal information: general interests, leisure activities, family & friends, lifestyle, healthy eating & exercise.

Exam Board EdExcel
Specification 1SP0
Course Specification Spanish
Exam Component 100%

Level 2 Cambridge National Certificate in Sport Science

The Cambridge National in Sport Science helps students appreciate how sport science underpins sport at all levels. They learn about anatomy, physiology, injury prevention, improving personal fitness through appropriate training and diet, and the role of psychology in improving performance.
This course is ideal for students who have a keen interest in the world of sport and exercise and leads to opportunities for further study in A-Level Physical Education and CTEC Sport. Both are currently offered in the sixth form.

It is also relevant to those wishing to pursue a career in the health and fitness industry, or who wish to apply the principles to their own training.

Mandatory units:

• Reducing the risk of sports injuries – 1 hour Written paper, OCR-set and marked

• Applying principles of training – Centre-assessed task, OCR moderated

Optional Units (2 to be selected from):

• Sport psychology – Centre-assessed tasks, OCR moderated

• Sports nutrition – Centre-assessed tasks, OCR moderated

• Technology in sport – Centre-assessed tasks, OCR moderated

Exam Board OCR
Specification J812
Course Specification Sport Science
Exam Component 25%
Controlled Assessment 75%

Level 2 BTEC Tech Award in Travel & Tourism

The travel and tourism sector is the UK’s third-largest employer, accounting for 9.5 per cent of total employment. Tourism is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the UK in employment terms, employing nearly 3 million people.
Travel and tourism looks set to continue to grow as an industry as people want to travel further and see new places.

If you are interested in travel and learning about the various factors, which influence where we like to go on holiday then this is the course for you. With a mix of portfolio construction and an external examination you will develop a range of skills valuable to a future employer.

Component 1: (Internally Assessed)

Travel and Tourism Organisations and Destinations – Investigate the aims of UK travel and tourism organisations and explore travel and tourism and tourist destinations.

Component 2: (External)
Influences on Global Travel and Tourism – Learners will explore the different factors that may influence global travel and tourism, and how travel and tourism organisations and destinations respond to these factors. Learners will examine the potential impacts of tourism at global destinations and how destinations can manage the impacts of tourism and control tourism development to achieve sustainable tourism.

Component 3: (Internal Synoptic Assessment)
Customer Needs in Travel and Tourism – Investigate how organisations identify travel and tourism trends and explore how to meet the needs and preferences of travel and tourism customers.

Exam Board Edexcel
Course Specification Travel & Tourism
Exam Component 40%
Controlled Assessment 60%


Letters to parents
Safeguarding & E-Safety