Northampton School for Boys



Team Leader - Mr D. Hodgson

The Science facilities at Northampton School for Boys are housed in a purpose built block, opened by the Queen Mother in 1956, re-modelled in 1993 and extended in 1995. There was a further extension in 2010 with the creation of the Wolfson Laboratory and we now have nine laboratories, two classrooms and a computer room. All of the laboratories are equipped with projectors and some with interactive whiteboards. There are also two prep-rooms, a staf workroom and a lift During the summer of 2012 the windows in the block will be remodelled.

The course covers the four main areas of science – Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Earth Sciences. The course is split up into topics with either a task or a test upon completion. Where there is a test this will form the basis of the termly report. There is a significant element of practical work using Bunsen burners and other potentially dangerous equipment which means that safe and sensible behaviour is expected at all times. Some practical sessions are extended as investigations.

Year 7

Unit / Module

Brief Outline

Biology 1


Structure and function of body systems


In B1 you will discover what plants and animals are made of. You will also meet some tiny organisms that can only be seen under a microscope. You will explore how different structures work together to keep an organism alive. Finally, you will discover how new plants and animals arise through the process of reproduction.

Chemistry 1

Particles and their behaviour

Elements, atoms and compounds


Acids and Alkalis

What is stuff made of? Everything is made up of chemicals- the food you eat, the plastic in your phone….and you!


In C1 you will learn about the atoms that make up everything on the Earth and beyond. You will explore how chemical reactions make vital materials and transfer energy for almost everything we do.

Physics 1


Sound and Light


The first astronaut to walk on the mon, Neil Armstrong, looked back and saw the Earth as no-one else had ever seen it before.


In P1 you will learn about how you see and how light and sound waves behave. You will learn about the place of the Earth in the Universe. You will also learn about the forces that keep you from falling through the floor and allow astronauts to stand on the moon.

 Year 8

Unit / Module

Brief Outline

Biology 2

Health and Lifestyle

Ecosystems and Processes

Adaptation and Inheritance

In B2 you will compare the effects of healthy and unhealthy lifestyles on your body. You will look at why organisms need energy to function effectively. Finally you will investigate the differences that exist between organisms and why this is important for survival.

Chemistry 2

The Periodic Table

Separation Techniques

Metals and acids

The Earth

In this unit you will learn about the structure of the Earth and the rocks that make up the crust. You will discover how we separate mixtures and use chemical reactions, to obtain the materials we need from the Earth and its atmosphere.

You will also explore patterns in chemical reactions. You will identify patterns in the properties of elements and learn how to use the Periodic Table to predict properties.

Physics 2

Electricity and Magnetism


Motion and Pressure

In this unit you will discover how electric circuits work and how electricity is generated. You will learn why it is important to insulate a house and what you pay for when you pay your electricity bill. You will also find out how graphs can be used to tell a story and how forces explain gas and pressure. 

 Year 9

Unit / Module

Brief Outline

Biology 1

New Technology e.g. cloning

Turning points in Biology

E.g. vaccines and antibiotics

Detection e.g. fingerprinting and pathology

In this unit you will look at genetics. This includes genetically inherited disorders and how plant and animal genes can be changed to alter an organisms characteristics. You will also discover how you can protect yourself from disease through immunisation and treat conditions using antibiotics. Finally you will find out how forensic scientists solve crimes.

Chemistry 1

New Technology e.g. nanoparticles

Turning points in Biology

e.g. discovering the periodic table

Detection e.g. blood in alcohol

In this unit you will learn about nanoparticles. The se can make exciting new materials, with properties that can be used to strengthen sports equipment, protect electronic devices and treat disease. You will also discover how chemistry can be used to help solve crimes.

Physics 1

New Technology e.g.  mobile phones

Turning points in Biology

e.g. mission to the moon

Detection e.g. detecting particles

IN this unit you will learn about how technology, from mobile phones to hospitals, has changed the way we live our lives. You will learn about how ideas of the universe have changes and how electromagnetism and radioactivity were discovered. You will also learn how scientists look for new particles and aliens!


Double Award Subject content - specification

Pupils who do not express a preference for Triple Science are automatically  entered for Science and achieve the equivalent of two GCSE’s.  


In year 10 you study: Cell biology, Organisation, Infection and response, Bioenergetics. In year 11 you will study: Homeostasis and response, Inheritance, variation and evolution & Ecology.


In year 10 you study: Atomic structure and the periodic table, Bonding, structure, and the properties of matter, Quantitative chemistry. In year 11 you will study: Chemical changes, Energy changes, The rate and extent of chemical change, Organic chemistry Chemical analysis, Chemistry of the atmosphere


In year 10 you study:  Energy, Electricity, Particle model of matter, Atomic structure, Forces, Waves. In year 11 you will study: Magnetism and electromagnetism, Key ideas 


Triple Award Science

This preference means students achieve three separate GCSEs in Biology, Chemistry and Physics. Pupils study the three Science subjects separately with different teachers and cover further more challenging work in Physics, Chemistry and Biology. There is no coursework or controlled conditions assessment but pupils will need to complete a number of core practical’s.

Physics Subject content - specification

In year 10 you will study: Energy, Electricity, Particle model of matter, Atomic structure, Forces

In year 11 you will study: Waves, Magnetism and electromagnetism, Space physics

Chemistry Subject content - specification 

In year 10 you will study:  Atomic structure and the periodic table, bonding, structure, and the properties of matter, Quantitative chemistry, Chemical changes.

In year 11 you will study: Energy changes, The rate and extent of chemical change, Organic chemistry, chemical analysis & Chemistry of the atmosphere 

Biology Subject content - specification

In year 10 you will study: Biology Subject content, Cell biology, Organisation, Infection and response, Bioenergetics

In year 11 you will study: Homeostasis and response, Inheritance, variation and evolution & Ecology.


A-Levels - Sixth Form

Chemistry - Specification

In year 12 you will study 5 modules; Elements of Life, Developing Fuels, Elements from the sea, The ozone story and What’s in a medicine?  In year 13 you study The chemical industry, Polymers and life, Oceans, Developing metals and Colour by design.

Biology - Specification

During year 12 you will study: Development of practical skills, Foundations in Biology, Exchange and transport, Biodiversity, evolution and disease.

During year 13 you will study: Communications, homeostasis and energy, Genetics, evolution, and ecosystems.

Physics - Specification

In Y12 you will cover two Units which include the topics: Waves, Electricity, Force and Motion, Properties of solids and Quantum effects.

In Y13 you will study another two units which include the topics: Electromagnetism, Communications, Particle Physics and Space.

Across both Y12 and Y13 you will carry out a wide range of practical activities to develop you investigative skills including planning, graph drawing and analysing results.


Science Team

Mr D. Hodgson
Mr P. Loughney
Mr M. McKie
Ms N. Hennah
Mr C. Hull
Ms R. Unitt
Mr P. Riches
Mr J. Parsons
Ms A. Steele
Ms P. Leech
Mr T. Winfield
Ms S. Graham
Mrs R. Daniels - Senior Technician
Mr C. Panter - Technician
Mrs D. Ringrose - Technician
Mr R. Taylor