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Walney School

KS3 Curriculum


At Walney School we want students to enjoy creating, looking at, and discussing drawing, painting, sculpture and other art, craft, and design techniques.  We want our students to make progress in their understanding and appreciation of art, and of art history, and their ability to produce art themselves.

This means that we want students to increase their knowledge about art theory, about the history of art and the elements of art (tone and line, for example).  We want students to develop their skill in producing art, by gaining the knowledge they need to become more accurate (knowledge about perspective and anatomy for example), understand different types of media (pencil, charcoal, paint, for example), and to know how to analyse, improve, and develop their own work. We want students to have an appreciation of great artists, and to learn from them.

We use the National Curriculum and the Oak Academy to support the development of our curriculum, so that by the end of Key Stage 3 students will:

  • produce creative work, exploring their ideas and recording their experiences
  • become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture, and other art, craft, and design techniques
  • evaluate and analyse creative works using the language of art, craft, and design
  • know about great artists, craft makers and designers, and understand the historical and cultural development of their art forms


BPE is important because it enables young people to express their own enquiring, informed and reflective views about beliefs and values. BPE contributes dynamically to young people’s education by provoking challenging questions about meaning and purpose in life, beliefs about God, ultimate reality, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human. 

In BPE our students learn about and from religions and worldviews in local, national and global contexts, to discover, explore and consider different answers to these questions. They learn to weigh up the value of wisdom from different sources, to develop and express their insights in response, and to agree or disagree respectfully.

BPE equips students with systematic knowledge and understanding of a range of religions and worldviews, enabling them to develop their ideas, values and identities. It develops in students an aptitude for dialogue so that they can participate positively in our society with its diverse religions and worldviews. Students gain and deploy the skills needed to understand, interpret and evaluate texts, sources of wisdom and authority and other evidence. They learn to articulate clearly and coherently their personal beliefs, ideas, values and experiences while respecting the right of others to differ.


A high-quality computing education equips students to use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world. Computing has deep links with mathematics, science and design and technology, and provides insights into both natural and artificial systems. The core of computing is computer science, in which students are taught the principles of information and computation, how digital systems work and how to put this knowledge to use through programming. Building on this knowledge and understanding, students are equipped to use information technology to create programs, systems and a range of content. Computing also ensures that students become digitally literate – able to use, and express themselves and develop their ideas through, information and communication technology – at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.

By the end of KS3 students:

  • can understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, logic, algorithms and data representation
  • can analyse problems in computational terms, and have repeated practical experience of writing computer programs in order to solve such problems
  • can evaluate and apply information technology, including new or unfamiliar technologies, analytically to solve problems
  • are responsible, competent, confident and creative users of information and communication technology

KS3 Computing curriculum overview


We believe that students deserve a Design & Technology curriculum which prepares them to participate fully in the world they live in.

All of our students have the opportunity to practice a variety of skills including problem solving, risk taking and wider thinking in order to become creative and innovative practitioners. We aim to ensure that all students develop the technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world.

By the end of KS3 students:

  • develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world
  • build and apply a repertoire of knowledge, understanding and skills in order to design and make high-quality prototypes and products for a wide range of users
  • critique, evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others


At Walney School we want to nurture effective communicators, passionate readers, confident writers and wider thinkers. Through the study of English language and literature we challenge our learners to think deeply, to develop rich subject knowledge and to master a firm foundation of literacy skills to equip them for the future.

Knowledge of language, which includes linguistic knowledge like vocabulary and grammar, as well as knowledge of the world for comprehension, underpins progression in spoken language, reading and writing. We want our students to develop their understanding of English language and literature by making progress in knowledge of language and of its forms, usage, grammar and vocabulary.  This knowledge, of the structures of language can then be used by students across their spoken language, reading and writing.

We use the National Curriculum as our starting point for developing our curriculum, alongside work with the EEF and our feeder primary schools.  By the end of Key Stage 3 students:

  • read easily, fluently and with good understanding
  • develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information
  • acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language
  • appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
  • write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences
  • use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas
  • are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate

English curriculum overview


Learning how to cook is a crucial life skill that enables students to feed themselves and others affordably and well, now and in the future. It is our intention to ensure that all students have a broad food experience which inspires them to have a can-do attitude towards trying and making new foods. Food is a subject which can develop the knowledge and skills to improve health and even extend the life expectancy of students, as well as opening up a vast range of opportunities for employment and further education.

It is our aim to instil a love of cooking that will open the door to one of the great expressions of human creativity.

By the end of KS3 students:

  • understand and apply the principles of nutrition and health
  • cook a repertoire of predominantly savoury dishes so that they are able to feed themselves and others a healthy and varied diet
  • become competent in a range of cooking techniques [for example, selecting and preparing ingredients; using utensils and electrical equipment; applying heat in different ways; using awareness of taste, texture and smell to decide how to season dishes and combine ingredients; adapting and using their own recipes]
  • understand the source, seasonality and characteristics of a broad range of ingredients


We want all students to be able to confidently communicate in French and understand about French language and cultures,  with an empathic understanding of what it means for them to do this in their role as a global citizen.

This means that students will make progress in the three pillars of learning a modern foreign language: phonics, grammar and vocabulary.

By the end of Key Stage 3 students:

  • understand and respond to spoken and written French from a variety of authentic sources
  • speak with increasing confidence, fluency and spontaneity, finding ways of communicating what they want to say, including through discussion and asking questions, and continually improving the accuracy of their pronunciation and intonation
  • can write at varying length, for different purposes and audiences, using the variety of grammatical structures that they have learnt
  • discover and develop an appreciation of a range of writing in French.

French curriculum overview


Through studying geography, students begin to appreciate how places and landscapes are formed, how people and environments interact, and what the impacts are on the physical environment that arise from our everyday decisions, along with the diverse range of cultures and societies that exist and interconnect globally.

Geography builds on young people’s own experiences, guiding and enabling them to formulate questions, develop their intellectual skills and find answers to issues affecting their lives. Geography introduces students to distinctive investigative tools such as maps, fieldwork and the use of powerful digital communication technologies.

Geography is the subject which opens the door to the dynamic world in which we live. Geography prepares each one of us for our role as a global citizen in the 21st century. Through geography, people learn to value and care for the planet and all its inhabitants.

By the end of KS3 students:

  • develop contextual knowledge of the location of globally significant places – both terrestrial and marine – including their defining physical and human characteristics and how these provide a geographical context for understanding the actions of processes
  • understand the processes that give rise to key physical and human geographical features of the world, how these are interdependent and how they bring about spatial variation and change over time
  • are competent in the geographical skills needed to:
    • collect, analyse and communicate with a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork that deepen their understanding of geographical processes
    • interpret a range of sources of geographical information, including maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS)
    • communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length.

KS3 Geography curriculum


Studying history at Walney School allows pupils to analyse and understand complex questions and dilemmas by examining how the past has shaped (and continues to shape) global, national, and local relationships between societies and people.

Studying history allows us to observe and understand how people and societies have behaved historically and provides us with the evidence that is used to create laws, or theories about various aspects of society. History is the story of who we are, where we come from, and can potentially reveal where we are headed. It is essential for all of us in understanding ourselves and the world around us.

By the end of KS3 students:

  • know and understand the history of our islands as a coherent, chronological narrative, from the earliest times to the present day: how people’s lives have shaped this nation and how Britain has influenced and been influenced by the wider world
  • know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations; the expansion and dissolution of empires; characteristic features of past non-European societies; achievements and follies of mankind
  • gain and deploy a historically grounded understanding of abstract terms such as ‘empire’, ‘civilisation’, ‘parliament’ and ‘peasantry’
  • understand historical concepts such as continuity and change, cause and consequence, similarity, difference and significance, and use them to make connections, draw contrasts, analyse trends, frame historically-valid questions and create their own structured accounts, including written narratives and analyses
  • understand the methods of historical enquiry, including how evidence is used rigorously to make historical claims, and discern how and why contrasting arguments and interpretations of the past have been constructed 
  • gain historical perspective by placing their growing knowledge into different contexts, understanding the connections between local, regional, national and international history; between cultural, economic, military, political, religious and social history; and between short- and long-term timescales.

Y7 history curriculum

Y8 history curriculum

Y9 history curriculum


We aim to give the students the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to be confident, brave mathematicians, able to deal with mathematical demands placed upon them in school and in their future role in society.

Our mathematics curriculum has been developed from the National Curriculum, alongside development work with White Rose Maths, EEF, NCETM and our feeder primary Schools.  By the end of Key Stage 3 our students:

  • become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that they develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.
  • reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language
  • can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and nonroutine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions.

Mathematics curriculum overview


At Walney School we want students to enjoy listening to, creating and performing music.  We want our students to develop their understanding of music by making progress in the three interconnected areas of musicianship: technical, constructive, and expressive.

This means that we want students to increase their technical knowledge, so that for example, they sing and play music with increasing accuracy and confidence; their constructive knowledge, so that they understand the musical elements in a piece of music for example; and their expressive knowledge, so that they know more about different musical genres and cultures.

We will improve students’ musicianship through the activities of performing, composing and listening. By the end of Key Stage 3 students will:

  • sing and perform confidently, understanding how to use their voice safely, fluently and with increasing accuracy and expression
  • play musical instruments with increasing confidence, fluency, accuracy and expression
  • understand how to improvise and to compose music using staff notation appropriately and accurately
  • listen to and enjoy a wide range of music with increasingly sophisticated responses through their growing understanding of musical elements

We follow the National Curriculum and use the Model Music Curriculum to support the development of our curriculum.


At Walney School, we seek out exciting opportunities for learning outside the classroom (LOtC). The benefits of learning in other environments are well documented; as well as broadening horizons, it develops resilience, team working and self-awareness. Evidence shows that LOtC builds students’ confidence, creativity and problem solving skills so that they are better prepared for the world beyond the classroom. Developing such skills and qualities in our students is integral to our core values as a school and this focus on character-building underpins our Walney Ways.

Where possible, we take full advantage of our beautiful surroundings and regular beach trips bear testament to this. Taking pride in our surroundings is always encouraged and, as well as quiet reflection time in the outdoors, we also ask students to demonstrate their passion for our environment by partaking in litter picks and beach cleans.


We aim to give students the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to lead confident, healthy, independent lives and to become informed, active, responsible citizens. We are passionate about ensuring that our students are fully prepared to deal with whatever life throws at them, now and in the future. 

Our Personal Development (PD) curriculum has been developed from the National Curriculum for Citizenship, alongside statutory guidance on Relationships & Sex Education (RSE) and Health Education, and The Gatsby Benchmarks for Careers. 

PD lessons are part of our Personal, Social, Health and Economics programme in which students are encouraged to take part in a wide range of activities and experiences across and beyond the curriculum, contributing fully to the life of our school and community.   

PD lessons have been developed to reflect our values, so that we encourage pride in our own development, in our school and in our community.  The Walney Ways feature strongly in our PD curriculum as we actively encourage our students to become aspirational, curious, wider thinking, resilient, self-motivated, self-aware, and communicative.  In addition, we aim to link our learning in PD to our employability skills so that students understand that they can deliberately develop the soft skills they need for future employment.

PD curriculum overview


A high-quality physical education curriculum inspires all pupils to succeed and excel in competitive sport and other physically-demanding activities. It should provide opportunities for pupils to become physically confident in a way which supports their health and fitness. Opportunities to compete in sport and other activities build character and help to embed values such as fairness and respect.

By the end of KS3 students:

  • develop competence to excel in a broad range of physical activities
  • are physically active for sustained periods of time
  • engage in competitive sports and activities
  • lead healthy, active lives.

PE curriculum overview


We want our students to be independent scientific thinkers, to be curious and ask questions, to use their imagination, and express awe and wonder about the world and beyond.

Scientific thinkers are open-minded and research based. They theorise and plan, but expect things to go wrong and adapt when they do. They are methodical and are problem solvers, who identify and, where possible, correct errors, whilst understanding that many scientific breakthroughs have happened by mistake. They understand that learning about science helps them to explore, appreciate and understand life. 

By the end of Key Stage 3 our students:

  • develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the specific disciplines of biology, chemistry and physics
  • develop understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science through different types of science enquiries that help them to answer scientific questions about the world around them
  • are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future.

KS3 science curriculum overview


In June of 2019, Walney School Science Department applied for the Science Mark Silver Award. After compiling and submitting evidence of our practice towards the 53 different criteria, the evidence was reviewed by an independent assessor and a decision was made that we would be awarded the Gold Science Mark- a fantastic achievement that we are very proud of. We now have the status as a Science Mark School for the next three years.

Science Mark was created by STEM Learning to recognise and celebrate best practice in science departments across the UK. Schools and colleges receive the Science Mark when they can show that they are delivering inspiring lessons for students and demonstrate their department’s commitment to high-quality science education.

This was the initial feedback from our assessor, Katy Bloom:

Thank you for this submission for Silver Science Mark. Your proud descriptions and evidence indicate a lively, hard-working and vibrant Science department where the learning and engagement of your students are paramount, and where your team clearly have personal investment in how they thrive. The science team appears strong, and stable, and you ensure that students no matter what their starting point, are able to progress. You also show that you do not rest on this, and look to continually evaluate and improve what you do. The curriculum is varied, and differentiated, with input from a wide range of committed stakeholders. The level to which the evidence has been provided has been checked against the Gold category, and I am delighted to say that overall the criteria have been met holistically to achieve Gold, rather than Silver.”

Adam Little,Professional Development Leader at STEM Learning, said:

“We are delighted to congratulate Walney School on receiving the GOLD Science Mark. Being awarded Science Mark is such a prestigious achievement because the assessment process is so rigorous, ensuring the programme is a true hallmark of quality Science teaching. Each school and college who receives Science Mark has demonstrated a real and ongoing commitment to excellent Science education in their school. Walney School is a great example of this.”