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Head of Department: Mr Robert Wicks

Members of staff: Mrs Kathryn Hamblett, Mr Michael Swettenham, Mr Charles White, Dr Alison Drasdo (part time), Mrs Melanie Haywood (part time),  Mrs Sharon Watson (Biology Technician)

Biology is a natural science concerned with the study of life and living organisms, including their structure, function, growth, origin, evolution, distribution, and taxonomy. It looks at the worlds of both plants and animals, including humans, and the greater environment within which they interact and survive. Numerous links can be made between different biological areas, separate branches of the sciences and other curriculum areas, in order to give pupils a relevant and comprehensive appreciation of the subject.

Students studying Biology at King’s will look at Biology from the very small to the very large. That is they will use microscopes from Year 7 to learn about cells and microscopic organisms, study organs of the body through class demonstrations, carry out practical work to understand how animals and plants function in order to survive and become environmentally aware by analysing changes to ecosystems.

Biology is taught as part of a Key Stage 3 Science course during Years 7 and 8, whereas in Year 9 students begin a programme of study based around GCSE Biology. They will be taught by a subject specialist from Year 9 following the AQA GCSE Biology specification. The GCSE course provides a broad and balanced learning experience that becomes more challenging over each year. It provides students with a fantastic grounding for A level Biology which also follows the AQA Biology specification.

Teaching of the subject throughout the school encompasses a number of approaches. Practical work is vital to strengthen students understanding of topics and we aim to provide regular opportunities to engage students using this type of activity. Group discussion tasks are used to develop a more open ended style towards learning, as the students can discuss ideas more freely and build up ideas before presenting them back. We also use ICT based activities where appropriate and GCSE and A level students have access to an online resource called Kerboodle. On top of these, students will experience teacher led presentations and demonstrations, short video clips, whole class discussion, extended writing tasks, debating and group presentations.

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