08 June 2017
The stress of sitting the final external examinations for our grade 9 and 11 students is now over and all we can do is hope that the hard work has not been in vain and that the students will get the rewards their efforts deserve. The Science team certainly prepared the students very thoroughly and put on several extra hours of free tuition every week. The papers were probably on the hard side and demanded detailed learning, especially the recall of formula, but we had prepared very well and certainly covered every topic that came up. So now…fingers crossed as we wait for the results.
In class there is still much to be done as we head into our final half term and the end of year internal examinations and assessments.
Grade 7 is having a great time exploring solutions, separation and purification techniques. This is a good opportunity for them to develop their lab investigation skills and learn how to handle apparatus safely. They were recently crystallising salt from rock salt and having a competition to see who could grow the biggest copper sulphate crystals. Grade 8 is investigating magnets and electromagnets. They will also be having a competition to try to build the strongest electromagnet possible. Our grade 9 students are looking at Genetics and Selection. They will be considering the contributions made in these areas by Charles Darwin and Gregor Mendel. Grade 9s finish the year with a self-study reflection and research into the energy crises and man’s influence on the ecosystem - very topical given Donald Trump’s recent controversial withdrawal from the Paris agreement.
Grade 10 Coordinated Science students have done well in terms of getting through the syllabus content well ahead of time. They are looking at the respiratory and circulatory systems and will considering the harmful effects of cigarette smoking. We may well have time to revisit the more difficult topics from earlier in the course. Cambridge is making a few changes to the IGCSE course for next year’s grade 10. The new course is more demanding and is designed to bring Coordinated Science more in line with the pure science subjects.