Introduction

The physics department aim is to stimulate inquisitiveness for the world around us and develop and understanding of how it works. We believe that to develop an understanding of the subject requires an open-ended approach to teaching, the intention being to encourage students to think and apply information in a safe learning environment. Experimentation is an essential part of this process and every opportunity is taken to undertake practical work in lessons.

Over any one academic year a wide, but varying programme of enrichment opportunities are available for Stretford Grammar School pupils.

Meet the team:

Mr. S. Chillingworth Curriculum Leader for Physics
Mr. C. Drayton Teacher of Physics

Enrichment:

A variety of activities are arranged as and when they arise over any one academic year. This might include lectures at a variety of Universities, participation in associated events and competitions.   The Department also has a strong link with the Ogden Trust through which it has organised visits by a planetarium for KS3, bursaries and awards for KS4 and 5, visits to lectures by Brian Cox. In recent years students have been afforded the opportunity to undertake GCSE Astronomy, Lectures and visits to Manchester University enabling them to appreciate some of the wider variety of career paths physics can give you.

 

Year 9

In year 9 we complete the teaching of the KS3 Curriculum and overlap this with the start of the GCSE syllabus.

Heating and cooling

Heat transfer mechanisms – conduction, convection, radiation and evaporation

Energy transfer by design

Specific Heat capacity

Heating and insulation of buildings

Energy forms, transformation and conservation

Energy and efficiency

 

Key Stage 4

Unit  1:

The work covered in Year 9 and:

Using electrical energy -Electrical appliances, electrical power and the cost effectiveness and payback time.

Fuel for electricity – the advantages and disadvantages of different energy sources used in the generation of electricity.

Energy and the environment

The National Grid.

The nature of waves, how they are described and measured.

The electromagnetic spectrum and communication

Sound and it’s properties

The expanding universe and the ’Big Bang’

 

Unit 2:  Motion, electricity and atomic physics

Forces and their effects

Kinetic energy of objects speeding up and slowing down

Currents in electrical circuits

Using mains safely and the power of electrical appliances

What happens when radioactive substances decay and dangers of their emissions

Nuclear fission and nuclear fusion

 

Unit 3:  Physics 3

Medical applications of physics

Using physics to make things work

Keeping things moving

 

Unit 4: Controlled assessment

Students will undertake at least 1 ISA assessment when they have developed the skills below linked to the study of Units 1, 2 and 3. This will include:

Planning to test scientific ideas

Assess and manage risks when carrying out practical work

Collect, select, analyse and interpret primary and secondary data

Use of scientific models and evidence to develop hypotheses, arguments and explanations.

 

Key Stage 5:

Physics AS

Unit 1:

Content summary:

This unit involves the study of mechanics (rectilinear motion, forces, energy and power)

and materials (flow of liquids, viscosity, Stokes’ Law, properties of materials, Young’s’

modulus and elastic strain energy).

Part of this topic may be taught using applications that relate to, for example, sports.

The other part of this topic may be taught using, for example, a case study of the

production of sweets and biscuits. It may also be taught using the physics associated

with spare part surgery for joint replacements and lens implants.

 

Assessment:

This unit is assessed by means of a written examination paper of 1 hour 30 minutes

duration, which will consist of objective questions, short questions and long questions.

 

Unit 2:

Content summary:

This unit involves the study of waves (including refraction, polarisation, diffraction and standing (stationary) waves), electricity (current and resistance, Ohm’s law and non ohmic materials, potential dividers, emf and internal resistance of cells, and negative temperature coefficient thermistors) and the wave/particle nature of light.

Several different contexts may be used to teach parts of this unit including music, medical physics, technology in space, solar cells and an historical study of the nature of light.

 

Assessment:

This unit is assessed by means of a written examination paper of 1 hour 30 minutes duration, which will consist of objective questions, short questions and long questions.

 

Unit 3:

Content summary:

This unit involves an experiment that is based on a physics-based visit or a case study of an application of physics.

 

Assessment:

This unit is assessed by means of an experiment that is founded on either a physics based

visit or a case study of an application of physics. Students write a report that is either internally marked and externally moderated or externally marked by Edexcel.

 

Physics A2

Unit 4:

Content summary:

This unit involves the study of further mechanics (momentum and circular motion), electric and magnetic fields, and particle physics.

Several different contexts may be used to teach parts of this unit including a modern rail transport system, communications and display techniques.

Particle physics is the subject of current research, involving the acceleration and detection of high-energy particles. This area of the specification may be taught by exploring a range of contemporary experiments.

 

Assessment:

This unit is assessed by means of a written examination paper of 1 hour 35 minutes duration, which will consist of objective questions, short questions and long questions.

 

Unit 5:

Content summary:

This unit involves the study of thermal energy, nuclear decay, oscillations, astrophysics and cosmology.

Several different contexts may be used to teach parts of this unit including space technology, medical physics and the construction of buildings in earthquake zones.

The astrophysics and cosmology section of this specification may be taught using the physical interpretation of astronomical observations, the formation and evolution of stars, and the history and future of the universe.

 

Assessment:

This unit is assessed by means of a written examination paper of 1 hour 35 minutes duration, which will consist of objective questions, short questions and long questions.

 

Unit 6:

Content summary:

This unit involves planning an experiment, carrying out an experiment and analysing experimental results.

 

Assessment:

Students must plan an experiment and then carry out a plan of an experiment which may be their own plan, a plan provided by Edexcel or a plan devised by the centre.

Students write a report that is either marked by the teacher and externally moderated or externally marked by Edexcel.

 

How will Students be assessed?

Pupils are assessed throughout the year by marked classwork, homework, common assessments, project tasks and end of year exams.