Key Stage 4

Key Stage 4

Key Stage 4 represents a two-year programme in which most of the courses studied by students will progress to GCSE or IGCSE qualifications.

This is the first point at which the range of subjects studied begins to narrow, and students must think carefully about their areas of interest, in the subjects and in terms of their possible future studies and their career aspirations. The programmes become significantly more specialised, which provides increased challenge and interest for the students.

The high level of challenge in the programmes at Key Stage 4 supports strongly the vision of a confident learning community: the skills, attitudes and mutual support developed through the Key Stage 3 programme and through the continued focus on Responsibility for Learning will enable students to successfully meet the demands of the courses.

The learning of students focuses on:

• The knowledge and understanding of concepts and topics within the examination courses for each subject

• Developing student experience and capacity to analyse, evaluate and review to ensure access to higher GCSE grades

• Building the learning skills and attitudes in Responsibility for Learning, to enable pupils to develop as more capable students, and to respond positively to a demanding and challenging programme

• Development of responsibility for themselves and for others in the community through more opportunities to organize and run events and clubs

• Supporting the students in developing an understanding of themselves, of responsibilities in life, developing and presenting a personal profile, and preparing for independence and life after school

– Subjects and exams –

The KS3 curriculum is designed to ensure students engage with a broad and balanced range of subjects. The courses are mostly from the Cambridge curriculum and build on the Key Stage 2 curriculum, increasing the depth of knowledge in each subject through learning provided by subject specialists. . This provides all students with a thorough and unshakeable foundation from which students can go on to explore in any direction they choose, before progressing to the more specialised curriculum in Key Stage 4.

Languages, Literature and the Humanities are taught alongside Science, Mathematics, ICT and the expressive arts. The curriculum introduces a third language (German or French) which students will follow through to GCSE, and also Spanish Social Studies, which is taught in Spanish.

All subject teachers combine a rigorous approach with enjoyable and stimulating material which challenges students whilst catching their imagination.

English is developed in all subjects. It is critical to the success of students in all their studies, providing them with the means by which they both gain knowledge, and express it accurately. To support this, English development is monitored carefully, and students are expected to speak in English throughout the school day.

The focus on developing the skills and attitudes for Responsibility for Learning is integrated into the curriculum in each subject. This dimension of our programme at Oakley College provides a very effective approach for establishing these skills and attitudes, preparing students for the demands of GCSE and A Level courses in Key Stage 4 and Key Stage 5, respectively.

Personal and Social Education is a key part of the curriculum. This, along with Citizenship, is taught twice per week by the form tutors. The PSHE programme provides students with the information and awareness through which they can make informed decisions about health, careers and lifestyle as well as equipping them with a background from which they can make effective social and personal choices.

– Curriculum Programme –

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