• Curriculum Statement 2023-24

    The curriculum we offer to the students at Westwood strives to;

    Promote diversity, individuality, partnership and creativity;

    Be flexible and guided by the needs of our students;

    Allow students to negotiate a path through their learning that is both relevant and appropriate to their development;

    Offer choices of learning opportunities that are inclusive and provide a genuine variety of pathways.

    Curriculum Statement 2023-24 

    Beyond the Taught Curriculum 2023-24

    Year 9 Curriculum letter Nov 23

    Year 10 Curriculum letter Nov 23

    Year 11 Curriculum letter Nov 23

  • Key Stage 4

    Our KS4 curriculum has evolved from a traditional GCSE structure with all students following courses in Maths, English (up to 2 GCSEs), Science (2 or 3 GCSEs), Games and PSHE (both not examined with PSHE providing the time for the delivery of Careers, Core IT, Citizenship and Enterprise Education as well as Religious Studies) alongside other Option Block chosen subjects. In recent years we have introduced elements of vocational study into this package, to broaden our provision, and currently have Level 2 BTEC courses in Sport, Business, ICT and Health and Social Care alongside traditional GCSE options. Up to 60 students in Year 10 will also work towards a Sports Leader Award in PE/Games sessions.

    On average Year 10 students study 9 subjects at GCSE, with those who take Triple Science completing 10 subjects by the end of Key Stage 4. The most able Mathematicians will be entered for examination in both Maths and AQA Level 2 Further Maths at the end of Year 11.

    Mid-point in Year 9, students begin the process of selecting options for further study at GCSE, supported and guided by subject teachers and form tutors. Parents, carers and students are invited to attend our annual ‘Options Evening’ held in February where detailed information about the curriculum design is provided, as well as the chance to meet and speak to subject leaders about the courses on offer.

    KS4 Options Guide 2022

    Curriculum Statement 2023-24

    Beyond the Taught Curriculum 2022-23

  • Key Stage 5

    With open access entry to our Sixth Form, the post-16 curriculum provides access to a wide range of Level 3 courses with both traditional and vocational A-Levels. In recent years we have introduced A2 Photography, bringing the total of post-16 courses available at Westwood to 25. Level 2 provision can also be catered for as the demand arises; currently we have students following resit courses in GCSE English and Maths.

    Students are encouraged to follow 3 subjects throughout KS5, with a small proportion taking 4 courses. Variations on this arrangement are negotiated on an individual basis with Sixth Form Tutors. Vocational courses are timetabled in parallel with traditional subjects and the majority of those students who follow a Level 3 BTEC course will also be studying an additional A2 subject to give them the equivalent of a 3 A-Level course. Students also have the opportunity of accessing Core Sport sessions each week. In addition we have a number of Year 13 students who are completing an AS Extended Project – students are encouraged to opt into this where it will be particularly valuable for them to do so. Alongside this we have introduced the opportunity for students to work towards Duke of Edinburgh qualifications at either Bronze or Silver Award.

    In order to increase the range of subjects we can offer our post-16 students we collaborate closely with Leek High School and as part of the Leek Federation Sixth Form we occasionally arrange courses that are either split between the two sites in order to access facilities or teaching expertise. All transport between the two sites is provided free of charge.


    Sixth Form Prospectus

    Sixth Form Course Guide

    Curriculum Statement 2023-24

    Beyond the Taught Curriculum 2022-23

  • Beyond the formal curriculum

    Beyond the Taught Curriculum 2023-24

    WWC Planned Trips and Visits, Academic Year 2023-24


    Extra curricular sport has always played a significant role in the life of Westwood. Students have the opportunity to compete in sport in inter-house competitions which run throughout the year, as well as at county level and even national level, or simply for the joy of a sport or to maintain fitness. The P.E. department offer a range of sports throughout the year, including table tennis, tennis, badminton and use of the multi-gym. Students are encouraged to get involved in these sports which run during lunchtimes depending on the time of year. After school team sports on offer include basketball, netball, hockey, football, rugby (during winter months) and rounders and softball (during summer months).

    The Westwood inter-house competitions run annually where students have the chance to compete for their House in sports including: netball, football, rounders, basketball, badminton, softball and dodge ball. The year of sport culminates in Sports Day at the end of each academic year where the inter-house champions are crowned.

    The District runs many sporting competitions, including: tennis, rounders, cricket, athletics, football, basketball and netball – sports in which students compete against other local schools.

    We also enter students for certain county or national competitions, particularly in rugby, football, tennis and hockey and Westwood students have even enjoyed success at equestrian, orienteering and cheer-leading competitions in recent years.

    Keep an eye on the school’s Facebook feed for regular updates of which sports will be taking place and when.



    The Art Department has a thriving extra-curricular offer beyond the classroom. To enhance the teaching and learning which goes on in the classroom and build students’ cultural capital, we have recently made visits to London with our Sixth Form Art students where we visited Tate Modern, The Royal Academy of Arts and the Victoria and Albert Museum. This visit is long established and a permanent feature of our extra-curricular offer. We also offer Sixth Form Students the opportunity to visit Paris and New York as part of a wider program of international visits; in recent visits students have visited the Musee D-Orsay, The Lourve and the Pompidou Centre in Paris, and in New York City the MOMA.

    Celebrating Success

    A number of our Year 11 students have had their work displayed at the Foxlowe Arts Centre in Leek, allowing the superb work of our hardworking students to be appreciated by the general public. A-Level photography student Victoria Sheldon has also had her work published in ‘Amateur Photographer’ magazine. Past students have also won awards in the Rotary Young Photographer Award. Our talented students have gone on to study the subject at well-respected universities, including Goldsmiths University, Royal College of Art, Edinburgh school of Art and Staffordshire University.


    The Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme

    The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is a voluntary, non-competitive and flexible programme of cultural and adventurous activities for all young people aged between 14 and 25 years old, whatever their background or ability. At Westwood we currently offers all three levels (Bronze, Silver and Gold Award) to Years 9, 10,12 and 13. Currently we have over 70 students participating, including a group of 9 students currently working towards their Gold Award – a first for Westwood (2022).

    Our students complete a variety of activities in the different sections of the award.  Some of our students are trying out new activities to maintain a healthy mind and body, such as yoga, hill walking, rowing and even joining local gyms.  For the ‘Skills Section’ of the award, some of our students are learning to cook, to learn a language and even learn how to sign, whereas others are learning to play a musical instrument for the fist time or trying their hand at coding.

    The students at Westwood have clocked up 100s of hours volunteering at various places in the local area. Activities include: making tea in care homes, litter picking and conservation projects, as well as helping out at local clubs, primary schools and charity shops.

    During the Expedition phase our students have had the opportunity to develop their orienteering and survival skills, alongside softer skills such as a team work and compromise.

    Through the DofE experience we offer at Westwood it is a real pleasure to see our students thrive in a different context to that of the classroom.

    “I would definitely recommend the Duke of Edinburgh Award to anyone considering it – every aspect is fun and constructive. For example, I developed my crochet skills and can now make my own jumpers, cardigans and more. I took up boxing training which was really fun and helped increase my fitness and stamina. For the volunteering part, I worked in a charity shop, which really helped me to become more confident around people, as I was working on the till. The expedition was challenging, but extremely rewarding, and I wouldn’t change it at all – except maybe the part where I was almost chased by some sheep!”

    Yr12 student (2021-2) Bel Copsey


    Oversees visits with Languages

    Westwood has a long and well established relationship with two schools in France and Germany; the Collège Henri Guillaumet in Mourmelon, France and the Theodor Heuss Realschule in Walldorf, Germany. For close the 40 years students from Westwood have visited these schools as part of our exchange programme, partnering with a pen-pal and staying with host families in country. Students have had the opportunity to spend time in school in France and Germany, visit local sites, experience local foods and speak the language they learn in the classroom. We have always considered this experience invaluable and, following a hiatus due to Covid in recent years, we are determined to resurrect the programme and give our future students this memorable opportunity.

    Other visits offered by the Languages Department and in collaboration with other departments include: a cultural visit to Paris, a visit to Berlin for Sixth Form students of German and History and a visit to Barcelona for lower school students of GCSE Spanish.



    In 2017, Westwood was fortunate enough to be selected by New College, Oxford University to work in partnership with them to support our most academically able A-level students. Step Up is a ‘rolling’ programme which supports our current highest achieving Y12 students during the two years of their A-level studies to apply to so-called ‘elite’ universities. Our partnership with New College, Oxford is a wonderful opportunity for sustained support with potential Oxbridge applicants. The outreach team at New College meet with our Step-Up students several times over the two years and offer unrivaled support. Lively academic activities and tutorials with Oxford tutors from a range of disciplines form the backbone of the programme, with visits by tutors to Westwood and vists by Westwood students to New College, Oxford. In the autumn of the second year, the Step-Up outreach team advise students (by then in Year 13) on preparing for admissions tests – a necessary part for selection at most Oxford and Cambridge degree courses and other top universities. Also, in the autumn term, they will support our students with interview advice and practice.


    Throughout, the Step-Up team support Westwood teachers on how best to help our most able in applying to top universities. We have always found the Step-Up team to be welcoming and contactable at New College, Oxford! We continue to work very successfully with New College, Oxford who have supported us with Oxbridge applications year-on-year.


    Eco-School Committee

    Updates coming soon


    Young Engineer of the Year

    Year 10 students at Westwood have the opportunity to take part in the Young Engineer of the Year competition organised by KMF, a precision engineering company based in Newcastle-Under-Lyme.  The team is required to use their scientific, engineering and problem-solving skills to address a challenge provided by KMF.  In recent years, such challenges have included sending an experiment to the edge of Space, building and racing an electric go-kart and a Robot Wars style competition.  This is an excellent opportunity for students to work as part of a team and apply their knowledge and skills to solve problems faced in real-world situations.



    Updates coming soon

  • External Examinations

    Specific guidance and advice regarding all external examinations is found in the Student Examination Information Booklet we give to all students each year.

    While almost all formal external examinations are now taking place in the summer term each year, there are still courses that have examined modules or compulsory coursework elements at other times.


    Summer 2021  

    Due to Covid-19, and following the Department for Education consultation it has been decided that Summer Exams will not be sat in the usual manner. It has been confirmed that students will receive grades determined by schools and colleges: students will only be assessed on what they have been taught and no algorithm will be used.

    Teachers will be able to use evidence about a students’ performance gathered throughout their course to inform their judgement. This might include work that they have already completed, mock exam results, homework or in-class tests. Teachers may also use questions from exam boards, largely based on past papers, to help assess a student.

    It is important that students keep engaged in their learning and study as long as possible so that their hard work can be considered in their grade, and it will stand them in good stead for the next stage of their life. Teachers will tell the students which pieces of work will count towards their grade, before their grade is submitted to the exam board.

    Results days will be :

     Key Stage 5 – Tuesday 10th August

    Key stage 4 – Thursday 12th August

    Infographic – How GCSEs AS and A levels will be awarded in summer 2021

    Infographic – How vocational and technical qualifications will be awarded in 2021

    Year 11 Assessment Evidence

    Year 13 Assessment Evidence March 2021


  • English

    What do we offer in English?

    Our intent in English is to offer a curriculum that is:

    Ambitious for all – so that all students have opportunities to rise to the challenge of achieving their potential.

    Broad and balanced – so that students study a range of texts written by a variety of authors with different perspectives.

    Carefully sequenced – so that students study texts which become increasingly complex in style and substantial in content and themes.

    Diverse – so that students are exposed to new ideas, cultures and positive representations of different social groups.

    Engaging – so that lessons are enjoyable and staff can inspire a life-long love of literature and crafting language.


    What is studied in Year 9?

    Creative Writing


    ‘Of Mice and Men’ by John Steinbeck

    Conflict Poetry

    An introduction to Media Studies

    ‘The Tempest’ by William Shakespeare

    ‘DNA’ by Dennis Kelly


    Are any of these texts on the GCSE examinations?

    No, this is so that we can offer a broad, balanced and more diverse curriculum.


    What is studied for GCSE in Years 10 and 11?

    ‘Macbeth’ by William Shakespeare (examined on GCSE Literature Paper 1 in May Year 11)

    ‘A Christmas Carol’ by Charles Dickens (examined on GCSE Literature Paper 1 in May Year 11)

    ‘An Inspector Calls’ by J. B. Priestley (examined on GCSE Literature Paper 2 in May Year 11)

    Power and Conflict Poetry (examined on GCSE Literature Paper 2 in May Year 11)

    Unseen Poetry (examined on GCSE Literature Paper 1 in May Year 11)

    Explorations in Creative Reading & Writing (examined on GCSE Language Paper 1 in June Year 11)

    Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives (examined on GCSE Language Paper 2 in May Year 11)

    Spoken Language Endorsement, or speaking and listening (NB This is a separate qualification.)


    How can students excel in English?

    In lessons:

    Through always striving to do their best and embodying Westwood’s values of respect, resilience, ambition and pride.

    Politely asking for clarification at an appropriate time when they do not understand.

    Attempting challenge tasks.

    Committing to reflecting and improving their own work; mistakes should not be repeated.

    Outside of lessons:

    Through completing work at home.

    Consolidating their learning by making revision notes.

    To further support you with this, we have made links below to high quality revision resources:






    A Christmas Carol



    An Inspector Calls








    Language Paper 1:


    Language Paper 2:




    Past Papers and course information can be accessed here:




    What do we offer beyond English lessons?


    Shared Reading:

    The English Department has organised Shared Reading during tutor time two days per week for Years 9 and 10. The following texts are being read:

    ‘Ready Player One’

    ‘Orange Boy’


    ‘One of us is Lying’

    ‘Long Way Down’

    ‘We Were Liars’

    ‘A Sound of Thunder’

    ‘Animal Farm’

    ‘The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime’ (play version)

    ‘I am Malala’

    ‘Black and British’

    ‘Born a Crime’


    Challenging Wider Reading:

    The following 19th century texts are recommended as challenging wider reading:

    ‘Oliver Twist’ by Charles Dickens

    ‘Jane Eyre’ by Charlotte Bronte

    ‘David Copperfield’ by Charles Dickens

    ‘Wuthering Heights’ by Emily Bronte

    ‘The Sign of Four’ by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

    ‘Treasure Island’ by Robert Louis Stevenson

    ‘Frankenstein’ by Mary Shelley

    ‘Dracula’ by Bram Stoker



    This year we have organised trips to see:


    Poetry Live

    ‘Othello’ (to be confirmed)


    Learning Journey

    English Learning Journey Year 9

    English Learning Journey Year 10

    English Learning Journey Year 11

  • Mathematics

    What we believe

    A core subject and of central importance to modern society, Mathematics equips students with necessary skills of logical reasoning, spatial awareness and problem-solving strategies that are required in everyday life. As a global language that is both creative as well as functional, Mathematics provides a means of communication that is powerful, concise and unambiguous. Mathematics is an exciting and challenging subject which continues to develop at a rapid rate across many research areas. It has a natural elegance and beauty. Taking a real-world problem and creating and applying mathematical models to aid understanding is often hugely satisfying and rewarding. Mathematical concepts and techniques are key within many aspects of employment, the economy, ICT and scientific and industrial research. Competency in Mathematics can lead to careers that are exciting, challenging and diverse in nature including careers in Engineering, Accountancy, Medicine, Banking and Architecture.

    Curriculum Intent

    * Foster a love of Maths at all levels: students of all abilities should feed off the passion of their Maths teacher. They must have opportunities to see the beauty of Maths and share in ‘wow’ moments.

    * Develop confident problem solvers and students to have the confidence in their own ability: we must ensure that students have the confidence to apply their knowledge in new and unexpected scenarios. We will ensure they see the links between different areas of Mathematics and develop an appreciation that problem solving is a transferable skill that will serve them well in other areas of life.

    * Highlight the bigger picture: our curriculum must include practical applications of Mathematics. Students need to see where Maths fits in the world including the links with their other subjects.

    * That students form good relationships with staff and students both in their Mathematics lessons and generally around college.

    * Lead to academic success: our curriculum design must lead to significant progress for students of all abilities and inspire students to continue their study of Maths beyond Key Stage 5

    Curriculum Implementation

    Years 9, 10 and 11

    The Maths department have worked hard to develop a 3-year scheme of work that allows all students to become fluent with their skills and have strong reasoning and problem-solving strategies. Whilst developing this we have collaborated with other departments across the school to ensure that students see ‘the bigger picture’. We believe that this approach, combined with passionate Maths teaching, will foster a love of learning for Maths that will lead to all students reaching their potential.

    From Year 9 students are grouped on ability and follow the same scheme of work which ensures the smooth transition from middle school. Our top set with students highlighted and gifted and talented from middle school, will start the GCSE course with a view to them sitting the AQA Level 2 Further Qualification in Year 11 alongside their GCSE Mathematics.

    Year 10 and 11 will follow either the Foundation or Higher-Level OCR GCSE Mathematics scheme of work. Some of our weaker student will sit Entry level Mathematics in Year 10 to support the progression on to GCSE.

    Each year group takes three longer holistic examinations which require students to recall prior learning.

    Throughout the year homework is set weekly using a combination of written tasks and the MyMaths website. In Year 11 the students prepare for their final examinations by using examination paper booklets.

    Links to the Maths Curriculum Roadmaps:

    Year 9

    GCSE Foundation Tier

    GCSE Higher Tier

    Links to overview of schemes of work:

    Year 9

    GCSE Foundation

    GCSE Higher

    Years 12 and 13

    At Key Stage 5 we offer A level Mathematics, A level Further Mathematics, Core Mathematics and resit GCSE Mathematics.

    We follow the Pearson A level Mathematics course. This consists of units in Pure Mathematics, Mechanics and Statistics. The Further Mathematics A level is also with Pearson and includes Pure Mathematics, Further Statistics and Decision Mathematics. More information, including specifications and course materials, can be found here:


    We also offer a 2-year course in Level 3 Mathematical Studies (Core Maths). This is appropriate for a wider ability range and is made up of real-world applications of mathematics. The course supports the study of full A levels in areas such as social sciences, business, psychology, sciences, and health sciences. More information can be found here:


    Links to overview of schemes of work:

    A Level Maths

    A Level Further Maths

    Core Maths

    Extra Curricular:

    The Mathematics department provides a range of enrichment activities, including weekly after school clinics to support revision and homework, activities to celebrate numeracy week and Pi day, ‘wider world’ lessons including mathematical careers talks and we regularly hold a local interschool Maths competition. Where possible we find opportunities to support students and currently hold intervention sessions for KS4 students during Enrichment time. There are also opportunities for older students to support younger mathematicians including Year 11 as well as transition activities with the middle schools. The department is proud of its success within National competitions and regularly participates in the UKMT Maths challenge, Liverpool Mathematical society Open and Senior Maths challenges and other mathematical competitions and events organised by several universities.

    Support for Parents

    5 ways to help your child at home: 

    – Help develop a curiosity for Maths and problem solving; try to find the maths in everyday situations, encourage to explore mathematical careers and courses

    – Support them in becoming independent and organised; ensuring they have the correct equipment for all lessons and they complete homework by the deadline

    – Encourage Year 9, 10 and 11 students to use CorbettMaths and Mymaths websites; these are aimed at securing their core skills

    – Encourage Year 12 and 13 students to use the Integral Maths websites; these are aimed securing their skills and include; videos, walkthroughs, worksheets and section tests

    – Encourage all students to use our VLE area; this has a wide range of revision links, videos and past papers.

    – In Years 12 and 13 ensure students are completing Independent Study; the most successful students get into good habits with this as soon as they embark on their A levels


    Learning Journey

    Maths Learning Journey Foundation Year 9

    Maths Learning Journey Foundation Year 10

    Maths Learning Journey Foundation Year 11

    Maths Learning Journey Higher Year 9

    Maths Learning Journey Higher Year 10

    Maths Learning Journey Higher Year 11


    Useful Links








  • Science

    Vision statement

    Through consistently excellent teaching, accurate and timely formative and summative assessment give students an opportunity to achieve an outcome they are proud of, an enable them to take the next steps in their careers.

    To build a strong relationship of trust between staff and students, focussed on the enjoyment of inquiry, nurturing curiosity, and bringing current, relevant and real-world science into the classroom experience, preparing students to become educated citizens capable of comprehending and analysing global issues



    In year 9 we work closely with our feeder schools to ensure all KS3 objectives are met and pupils are supported in the transition to GCSE.

    Students follow the AQA Combined Trilogy or Separate Science (Biology/ Chemistry/ Physics) specification.

    For Combined Science, students follow topics in Biology, Chemistry and Physics and sit Combined Science exams at the end of Y11 to be awarded 2 GCSE’s in Science.

    For Separate Sciences, each subject is awarded as a separate GCSE

    Students are placed in groups appropriate to their needs to make differentiation more efficient, there being constant opportunity for students to move from class to class as their needs change.

    GCSE Trilogy Science offers grades from 9 to 1 but students may be entered for Higher or Foundation Tier depending on their progress.

    Students need to complete a list of “required practicals”. Questions in the written exams will draw on this knowledge and these questions will count for at least 15% of the overall marks.

    Students will study towards the foundation or higher examination using exam resources supported by the exam board.

    There are regular end of topic tests which allow students to measure their progress through the course. End of year examinations are used as summative assessment in the summer term.

    KS4 End of Course Assessment

    GCSE Examinations

    AQA GCSE Combined Science: Trilogy (8464)

    Foundation Level – Grades 1 – 5

    Higher Level – Grades 4 – 9

    Link for further information about this specification.


    Students sit all their examinations at the end of year 11.

    Science is externally assessed by six, 1 hour 15-minute exams; two Biology, two Chemistry and two Physics papers. Students will sit either Higher (grades 4-9) or Foundation papers (grades 1-5).


    Sixth form students can choose to study for AQA Biology, Chemistry, and Physics.

    There are regular end of topic tests which allow students to measure their progress through the course. End of year examinations are used as summative assessment in the summer term.

    Science subjects are always a very popular subject choice at A level, partly because pupils have enjoyed their experience in previous years and partly because Science is seen as a rigorous subject, well respected by employers and universities.

    KS5 End of Course Assessment

    A-level Examinations

    AQA Biology (7403)AQA Chemistry (7405)AQA Physics (7408)
    There are three examination papers – all are 2-hour exams.There are three examination papers – all are 2-hour exams.There are three examination papers – all are 2-hour exams.
    10% of the overall assessment of A-level Biology will contain mathematical skills equivalent to Level 2 or above.20% of the overall assessment of A-level Chemistry will contain mathematical skills equivalent to Level 2 or above.40% of the overall assessment of A-level Physics will contain mathematical skills equivalent to Level 2 or above.
    At least 15% of the overall assessment of A-level Biology will assess knowledge, skills and understanding in relation to practical work.At least 15% of the overall assessment of A-level Chemistry will assess knowledge, skills and understanding in relation to practical work.At least 15% of the overall assessment of A-level Physics will assess knowledge, skills and understanding in relation to practical work
    Link for further informationLink for further informationLink for further information


    Long term planning

    Link to the KS4 long term plan showing lesson by lesson content

    Click here

    Independent Learning (Sam Learning)

    To support learning in school pupils will regularly be set homework, this may be via ‘Sam Learning’ a web-based activity program.  Details of how to long in are shown below.  Sam Learning can also be used to select and science (and any other subject) content for independent learning eg. Catch up/ revision/ correcting misconceptions.

    Centre id; ST1WC (Caps)

    Username and password; 6 digit date of birth and two initials (Caps) eg John Brown 13th May 2009= 130509JB

    Supporting pupils progress at home

    The Science Department have been using a number of retrieval practice techniques during lessons with the aim of helping students to improve their learning and study habits, along with their base knowledge and understanding. All of these strategies can be used for revision and consolidation at home and best of all, they’re free! Although, they do require a bit of effort.

    For more information, please click here

    Extra-curricular activities

    Biology Olympiad

    Y13 biology students are invited to compete in the British Biology Olympiad.  This is a competition run in association with the Royal Society of Biology.  The competition is designed to stimulate students with an interest in biology to expand and extend their talents.  Pre-university students from colleges all over the country must complete supervised online examinations.  The competition is the first stage in selecting a team to represent the UK in an international competition.

    Y12 biology students can compete in an international, A-level Biology competition – the Intermediate Biology Olympiad.  This allows them to compete against students from all over the world by taking an examination involving 68 multiple choice questions, on core biological principles and problem solving, in 60 minutes.


    Young Engineer of the Year

    The Young Engineer of the Year competition is run by KMF and this year the challenge is to launch a weather balloon with a module attached to it, with the aim of sending a science experiment to the edge of Space.

    Our team have decided upon two investigations.  The first is a novelty experiment involving filling small water balloons with different gases and powder paint to see which balloon expands/explodes first as the altitude increases.  The second involves sending a CO2 monitor up to measure the levels of CO2 at different heights through the atmosphere.  Both investigations will be filmed using GoPro style cameras attached to the module.  The team also have to record produce and edit a video of their progress from start to finish.  The competition has several categories where prizes can be awarded including: Best scientific experiment, best photo of the Earth, best video, best team etc


    Eco School

    We are a club passionate about engaging young people in environmental education and action. We do this by following a simple, seven-step framework that guides, empowers and motivates pupils to drive change and improve environmental awareness in our school, local community and beyond.

    After completing the seven-step process, we plan to apply for Eco-Schools Green Flag accreditation, which recognises, rewards and celebrates the environmental achievements of young people.


    Learning Journey

    Biology Learning Journey Year 9

    Biology Learning Journey Year 10

    Biology Learning Journey Year 11

    Physics Learning Journey Year 9

    Physics Learning Journey Year 10

    Physics Learning Journey Year 11

    Chemistry Learning Journey Year 9

    Chemistry Learning Journey Year 10

    Chemistry Learning Journey Year 11

  • Business Studies

    Subject philosophy/ purpose

    The Business Studies Department aim to deliver a creative and relevant curriculum which is accessible by all learners.

    As a department we aim to produce students who:

    at KS4, apply the concepts of Business Studies

    have a feeling of confidence about their mathematical ability.

    are ICT literate

    have a knowledge and understanding of their progress

    work at and to their maximum potential

    achieve excellent results at KS4 and KS5

    continue to want to develop and study Business Studies, whether as post 16 students, lifelong learners or recreationally.

    can access the internet and social media safely and responsibly


    As teachers we:

    will be consistent in practice

    are enthusiastic about our subject and believe in what we are teaching

    employ varying teaching and learning styles

    expect high standards of behaviour, punctuality and work

    will be supportive of staff and students

    will be efficient in all aspects of our job.

    will work as effective team players

    value our own professional development

    share best practice and our areas of expertise within the department and to support the wider school community.


    Careers for Business students are varied, including:

    Accountancy, Business Analysis, Human Resources, Sales, Marketing, Management, Insurance, Banking, International Business.

    Curriculum Vision/intents

    Awareness of the world is a key focus within the Business Studies curriculum. We aim to give our students an understanding of how to not only work within business but to also understand how the way in which businesses work affects their financial well-being. By teaching our students business, we aim to provide them with the knowledge and skills to become leaders in their chosen field of work or to be able to set up a business of their own. Students need to understand key principles such as marketing, ownership and finance (both personal and business). By knowing how a business interacts with their customers, our students can successfully engage with others in many different situations.

    Our lessons are designed for students who want an introduction to business and enterprise. It has been developed to enthuse and inspire students about a career in business and enterprise.

    The study of Business Studies will appeal to students who wish to either set up their own business, move into employment or progress into further study. At all levels of Business Studies, every opportunity is taken to bring into lessons current affairs so that students can further their understanding that Business Studies is a live subject and that everything that happens can affect not just the companies, but the students as consumers. Students are encouraged to be able to identify the differences between ethical behaviour and behaviours of companies who simply act within the law. By creating critical thinkers with a sound understanding of the principles of Business we aim to develop savvy consumers and entrepreneurs of the future.

    Curriculum Implementation

    KS4 – BTEC Level 1/Level 2 Tech Award in Enterprise (Pearson/Edexcel):

    This course is for students who wish to acquire knowledge and skills through vocational contexts by studying the knowledge, behaviours and skills related to researching, planning, pitching and reviewing an enterprise idea as part of their Key Stage 4 learning. The qualification enables students to develop their technical skills, such as market research skills, planning, promotional and financial skills using realistic work scenarios, and personal skills, (such as monitoring own performance, time management, problem solving and business presentations) through a practical and skills-based approach to learning and assessment. Students will acquire knowledge, understanding and skills to underpin their practical activities in assessment, which will complement their GCSEs. Business Studies L1_2 Learning Journey


    Full curriculum content can be found in Business Studies Curriculum KS4

    KS5 – BTEC Level 3 Extended Certificate in Business (Pearson/Edexcel):

    Year 12 and 13 Business Studies has units being taught at the same time due to the split in teachers and the nature of the course. In Year 12 all must complete Units 1 and 2, which allows students to achieve the BTEC Level 3 Certificate in Business; in Year 13 all students must complete Units 3 and a further optional unit to reach the full Extended Certificate qualification, as illustrated in Business Studies L3 Learning Journey.


    Full curriculum content can be found in Business Studies Curriculum KS5

    Extra Curricular:

    The Business Studies department provides a range of enrichment activities. Year 10/11 students have guest speakers from local small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) on which to base their company research, including small private limited companies and local sole traders. In Year 12/13, students are offered a company visit to organisations such as JCB Ltd or Ornua Foods to enhance their understanding of organisations (although during the pandemic this was limited). Guest speakers from the local area, such as F.Ball Ltd, also enable students to gain an insight and ask detailed questions of the visitor. Students have also taken part in the annual CIPFA Management Team Games at Staffordshire University which broadens their experience of the public sector and develops skills in group work. At appropriate times during the year, we find opportunities to support students and hold revision/coursework sessions at lunchtimes prior to exams and coursework deadlines. Year 9 students experience an introduction to enterprise through the Year 9 Enterprise Challenge Days where they experience a Dragon’s Den event with visiting representatives from local enterprises and educational institutions.

    Learning Journey

    Business Learning Journey Year 10

    Business Learning Journey Year 11

  • Design and Technology


    Design and Technology at Westwood College aims to enable students to use creativity and imagination to generate designs and make prototypes that solve real world problems. Students develop their intellectual curiosity about the design and manufacture of products and systems and their impact on daily life and the wider world. They also expand their capacity to think innovatively and critically through focused research and exploration of design opportunities.

    Curriculum Vision

    Our aim is to nurture originality, creativity, positivity, logical thinking, visual presentation and clear communication, model making excellence, collaboration and compassion. Resulting in informed solutions through knowledge. During this process the students will learn about the real world of manufacturing, design, marketing and advertising, the psychology of ergonomics and selling, the sociology of mass consumerism, the environmental factors of a modern capitalist society amongst many other topics including a wide variety of materials and manufacturing methods.

    Curriculum implementation

    Each year students will carry out design and make tasks. In years 9,10 and 12 this will be structured around multiple projects. In years 11 and 13 it will be based on one project. Year 11 focusses on furniture or lighting design where year 13 moves into an area of conceptual product design. At GCSE we follow the AQA Design and Technology course and at A-Level we follow the Edexcel Design and Technology course. These two differing exam boards fir perfectly for the creative aesthetic we teach at Westwood. We offer lunchtime and afterschool design and workshop session, focussing on those crucial GCSE and A-Level making periods. We have many students who progress to studying for a degree in many areas of design from product, furniture and interior, through graphics, automotive, marketing, advertising and also a considerable number who will go on to study architecture or a range of engineering disciplines.


    Learning Journey

    Learning Journey Design Year 9

    Learning Journey Design Year 10

    Learning Journey Design Year 11

  • Drama

    Learning Journey

    Learning Journey Drama Year 9

    Learning Journey Drama Year 10

    Learning Journey Drama Year 11

  • Geography

    Subject philosophy/purpose

    Geography prepares young people with the knowledge, skills and understanding to make sense of their world and to face the challenges that will shape our societies and environments in the future.

    The study of geography stimulates an interest in and a sense of wonder about places. Geography is important; it helps young people make sense of a complex and dynamically changing world. It explains where places are, how places and landscapes are formed, how people and their environment interact, and how a diverse range of economies, societies and environments are interconnected. It builds on pupils’ own experiences to investigate places at all scales, from the personal to the global.

    Geographical enquiry encourages questioning, investigation and critical thinking about issues affecting the world and people’s lives, now and in the future. Fieldwork is an essential element of this. Pupils learn to think spatially and use maps, visual images and new technologies, including geographical information systems (GIS), to obtain, present and analyse information. Geography inspires pupils to become global citizens by exploring their own place in the world, their values and their responsibilities to other people, to the environment and to the sustainability of the planet.

    In our department every person’s opinion counts and is valued, the pupil voice is encouraged and listened to. We develop the skills that are needed to allow students to take the next step on their learning journey. Competency in Geography can lead to careers that are exciting, challenging and diverse in nature including careers in the energy industry, conservation, tourism, migration, water and air quality, cartography and disaster risk management.

    Curriculum vision/intents

    We seek to engender a knowledge and understanding of planet Earth and its people which provides students with a lasting awareness of the world around us. Sensitivity and empathy towards others are promoted at all times as well as tolerance and independent thinking. We aim to prepare students for an active role in an ever-changing world.

    We foster a spirit of enquiry, continual improvement and a learning community that goes beyond the curriculum and the classroom. Students have the opportunity to see the beauty of the world around them and understand the challenges that it faces.

    We encourage an awareness of the bigger picture: we endeavour for students to see why Geography is important, including its links with other subjects.

    We want students to form a good rapport with the Geography department to maximise the learning and progress they make.

    We aim for students to be successful in Geography: our curriculum design must lead to progress for students of all abilities and inspire students to continue their study of Geography beyond Key Stage 5.


    Curriculum Implementation

    Years 9

    Geography is taught in mixed ability classes for one hour per week. We have designed the curriculum by working closely with the Middle Schools to teach the remainder of the National Curriculum. This ensures that skills, knowledge and understanding are built on year by year and sequenced appropriately to maximise learning for all students and inspire them to continue with Geography into Key Stage 4. Knowledge and understanding are assessed throughout and at the end of each topic. Lesson content and tasks are designed to provide appropriate challenge and support to all students.

    Year 10 and 11

    Year 10 and 11 will follow the AQA GCSE Geography course. Students have 5 hours of Geography lessons each fortnight. At GCSE we conduct most assessment from AQA past papers to assess student progress throughout the course. Students are mostly assessed through previous exam questions which are marked and moderated as a department. Fieldwork is carried out on two occasions during the GCSE course by experienced staff and with expert input, such as the Staffordshire Wildlife Trust at Cotton Dell Nature Reserve.

    Years 12 and 13

    At Key Stage 5 we offer the A level Geography Pearson Edexcel course. At A Level we conduct assessment from Edexcel past papers to assess student progress throughout the course. Students are assessed through previous exam questions which are marked and moderated as a department. Fieldwork is carried out on four occasions during the A level course by experienced staff.


    Links to overview of schemes of work:

    Year 9


    A Level

    We review and evaluate topic successes and weaknesses so that we can generate new whole group skills foci, or homework and intervention. The Geography team will ensure to monitor, evaluate and review the teaching and learning. In order to do this, learning walks, book scrutinies and discussions with pupils will take place frequently throughout the academic year.


    The Geography department provides a range of enrichment activities to help develop environmental awareness, locational knowledge, independent enquiry skills and map skills. Students are encouraged to take advantage of expert advice and input through lectures and fieldwork. We partake in regular evening lectures arranged by the Geographical Association held at Staffordshire University and after school online university events through Channel Talent. We also have the opportunity to visit the Geography department at Staffordshire university to partake in exemplar lectures and workshops. Fieldwork is undertaken on numerous occasions at GCSE and A level to give students first-hand experiences, which enhance their understanding of the world beyond their locality. Targeted after school intervention is offered to students at GCSE and A level to maximise their progress. Revision sessions are also on offer to all GCSE and A level students. It is important that students develop the skills of a geographer by fully immersing them in all areas of the subject.

    Support for Parents

    Ways to help your child at home:

    Ask if you can help them – with homework or revision, including exam questions and key words to learn. Check their knowledge with flashcards, quizzes, chat about different topics at dinner, ask them to tell you about a geography case study etc.

    Lots of students struggle to revise key skills such as reading and interpreting OS maps. Encourage them to visit the website below to practice these: https://www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/mapzone

    BBC Bitesize is a great website for GCSE students. Our exam board is AQA – encourage them to visit this website to revise and take the quizzes that are available: https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/examspecs/zy3ptycRevision guides for GCSE and A Level students are available from the school via ParentPay. They are the revision guides that we recommend. If your child does complete practice questions from them or elsewhere, encourage them to bring them into school for their teacher to check and give feedback on.

    Help develop a curiosity for Geography; try to find and discuss the Geography in your everyday situations. Geography is everywhere! Encourage them to explore Geographical careers and future courses.

    Support them in becoming independent and organised by ensuring they have the correct equipment for lessons and they have completed their homework by he deadline.

    In Years 12 and 13 especially, ensure they are completing independent study; the most successful students get into good habits early on in Year 12.

    Encourage them to use phrases such as ‘this means’ and ‘this is because’ to ensure they are developing their points. If your child makes a point, ask them: ‘why?’



    Best ways for your son/daughter to revise:

    Flash cards

    Mind maps


    Exam questions Look, cover, write, check

    Learning Journey

    Year 9 Geography Learning Journey

    GCSE Geography Learning Journey

    A Level Geography Learning Journey

    Useful websites:


    https://www.studysmarter.co.uk/ – really useful for revision for all year groups

    https://quizlet.com/en-gb – really useful for revision for all year groups








    A Level




  • Health and Social Care

    Subject aim / purpose

    About 3 million people in the UK work in the health and social care sectors, which is equivalent to 1 in every 10 people.  Demand for both health care and social care is likely to continue to rise due to the ageing population, so it is undisputable that it plays a key role in UK society.

    The Health and Social Care department will nurture every student through their journey to develop their resilience, expression and independence, growing into well-rounded individuals to succeed in today’s diverse society. Complimenting other subjects and the wider school, students will experience and study a vast range of Health and Social Care topic areas, requiring them to demonstrate maturity and respect for others. Students will become confident and fully prepared to manage their emotions for the many challenges and opportunities they face in managing people’s health and well-being, preparing them for life and inspiring them to work in Modern Britain. Students will gain key competencies in the areas of research, problem-solving, analysis and making judgements along with exam technique which will support them in further study and into their professional lives.

    Curriculum Vision / Intents

    Health and Social Care is an option which students can select at KS4 and KS5. Our intent is to provide a fluid and dynamic knowledge rich curriculum, which gives learners access and opportunity to progress to KS5 and beyond. The course is coherently planned and sequenced towards cumulatively developing knowledge and competencies for future learning whilst building upon students’ knowledge from Personal Development during KS3.

    Students will study the Tech Award at KS4 which is assessed through a combination of external exam and internal assessments. The research and report writing competencies applied at KS4 develop learners for further study into KS5 and beyond. Students who choose to study the subject at KS5 have two pathway options. They can study the Diploma which provides 2 A Levels at the end of Post 16 or the Extended Diploma with provides the equivalent of 3 A Levels. The increasing complexity of the subject knowledge enables learners to refine their research and writing competencies and mirror the study they would complete in higher education.

    Curriculum Implementation

    Key Stage 4

    Year 10

    Component 1:  Human Lifespan Development (Learning Aim A) – Coursework 30%

    Students will explore the different aspects of growth and physical, intellectual, emotional and social development across the life stages. Students will also build their knowledge on the factors that can affect development within different life stages and examine the impact that different lifestyles and choices can have upon individuals. In addition, students will explore the different life events that can occur within a lifetime, and the coping systems and mechanisms that are in place within society, the health sector and ourselves to help support and deal with both expected and unexpected changes that occur within life.

    Component 2:  Health & Social Care Services & Values (Learning Aim A) – Coursework 30%

    Students develop their understanding of the different health and social care services that exist and how people can gain access to them. In addition, the students will gain competencies, such as empathy, as they develop an understanding of different situations that might affect care and investigate a range of health needs and barriers to care. In addition, within this component students will learn about the fundamental care values within health and social care settings and how these care values help to ensure a high quality of care for the most vulnerable of service users.

    Year 11

    Component 1:  Human Lifespan Development (Learning Aim B) – Coursework

    Component 2:  Health & Social Care Values (Learning Aim B) – Coursework

    Component 1 and 2 continue into the final year of study (as outlined above)

    Component 3:  Health & Wellbeing – External examination 40%

    Component 3 includes gaining knowledge and learning on how to be healthy. Students will explore the different meanings and definitions of health. Students will learn to evaluate different lifestyles and choices and how these impact upon physical, intellectual, emotional and social health. In addition, they will investigate health monitoring and how the health care sector can help people achieve a positive health.

    Key Stage 5

    Year 12

    Unit 1:  Human Lifespan Development – External examination

    This unit is taught to all students and develops their knowledge and understanding from component 1 at KS4. The unit focuses on how we develop through our life stages and the impact of a wide range of events on this development. In addition, a variety of theories are studied that link with A level Psychology and Sociology.

    Unit 2:  Working in Health & Social Care – External examination

    This unit is taught to all students. This unit requires students to study a wide range of career pathways within the health and social care sectors and examines the key roles and responsibilities they have in providing excellent care to service users. Students will study examples of good working practice and poor working practice and the implications these have had.

    Unit 5:  Meeting individual needs – Coursework

    This unit is taught to all students and as aspects that link with component 2 at KS4. The unit focuses on the care values and approaches that are needed to work with a variety of service users in health and social care settings.

    Unit 8 :  Promoting Public Health – Coursework

    The unit considers all aspects of public health and the history of the NHS. Students will study important health issues in current society such as poor lifestyle choices, mental health and developments in health protection and promotion. Students will carry out a wide range of statistical research to support their findings on the success of a variety of strategies that are implemented to improve public health.

    Year 13

    Unit 4:  Enquiries into current research in Health & Social Care – External examination

    This unit requires students to combine the research competencies, which they have developed throughout KS4 and 5, to analyse a piece of current literature on a topic linked to an aspect of health or social care. Students then have to investigate secondary research and complete an exam paper on the reliability and validity or the research and the future implications this could have for the relevant sector.

    Unit 7:  Principles of Safe Practice in Health & Social Care – Coursework

    Students study the legislation, policies and procedures that are implemented in order to safeguard employers, employees and staff in health and social care settings.

    Unit 14:  Physiological Disorders – Coursework

    This unit is taught to all students. Students will study 2 types of physiological disorder and investigate the causes and implications of this. They will consider appropriate care pathways and evaluate the impact that the disorders have on service users. Research will also take place into new treatments and their impact on patient recovery and quality of life.

    Unit 19:  Nutrition – Coursework

    This unit extends the work done for component 3 at KS4. Students study the impact of nutrition on overall health and wellbeing, and the competencies of planning nutrition for service users with a variety of needs.

    Students completing the Extended Diploma study an additional 5 units.

    Unit 3. Anatomy and Physiology for Health and Social Care – External Examination

    Unit 6: Work Experience in Health and Social Care – Coursework

    Unit 11: Psychological Perspectives – Coursework

    Unit 17: Caring for Individuals with Dementia – Coursework

    Unit 18: Assessing Children’s Development Support Needs – Coursework


    Useful Websites










    Qualifications which we offer at KS4 and KS5


    Edexcel BTEC Tech Award Health and Social care

    Health & Social Care (2022) | BTEC Tech Award | Pearson qualifications


    Edexcel BTEC National Diploma in Health and Social Care

    Edexcel BTEC National Extended Diploma in Health & Social Care


    Enrichment and extra-curricular opportunities in the subject

    The department has good links with the local universities and provides students with exposure to guest speakers, workshops and visits. Where possible, we have visits from NHS and social care professionals. We have had links with Dementia UK, Alzheimer’s Society and Dementia Friends, North Staffordshire Medical Institute, Waterside Day Care Centre, Alzheimer’s Society and Dementia Friends.

    Where could this subject ultimately take you?

    This subject provides pathways into a wide variety of career options including nursing, midwifery, physiotherapy, teaching and education, social and youth work, social care, counselling and provides access to numerous apprenticeships and study options within the Health and Social Care System.






    Statement of Intent:

    The Health and Social Care curriculum ensures that St Margaret Ward is able to produce confident, compassionate young adults who have the skills and knowledge to progress into the health and social care sectors. Our learners from Year 10 to 13 will develop an understanding of how human beings develop, what factors influence their lives, and how agencies can work with health and social care workers to improve public health.

    Students in years 11 & 13 were subject to assessment adaptations during 2020-2021 therefore not all units/learning aims have been fully assessed as per the specifications but in line with Pearson’s adaptations.

    Students in all year groups are also eligible for the adaptations for 2021-2022 with the Level 3 qualification allowing for streamlines assessment if required, Level 2 has adaptations to the assessment criterion

    Course Structure-
    Year 12 & Year 13


    BTEC Extended Certificate (2016); this is equivalent to 1 A Level

    BTEC Diploma (2016); this is equivalent to 2 A Levels

    BTEC Extended Diploma in Health & Social Care (2016); equivalent to 3 A Levels

    Mandatory examined (exam) units:

    Unit 1 – Human Lifespan Development (all)

    Unit 2 – Working in Health & Social Care (all)

    Unit 3 – Anatomy and Physiology (Ext Dip)

    Unit 4 – Enquiries into Current Research (Dip and Ext Dip)

    Mandatory internally assessed (coursework) units:

    Unit 5 – Meeting Individual Care & Support Needs (all)

    Unit 6 – Work Experience in Health and Social Care (this includes 100 hours of work experience) (Ext Dip)

    Unit 7 – Principles of Safe Practice in Health and Social Care (Dip and Ext Dip)

    Unit 8 – Promoting Public Health (Dip and Ext Dip)

    + four other internally assessed units. The number of which increases with each qualification. This varies each year but this year we are offering:

    Unit 10 – Sociological Perspectives

    Unit 12 – Supporting Individuals with Additional Needs

    Unit 14 – Physiological Disorders and their Care

    Unit 18 – Assessing Children’s Development Support Needs


    Pass, Merit, Distinction or Distinction*.

    This is graded for each individual unit and the points from each unit then added up to produce an overall outcome.

    Year 10 & Year 11


    BTEC Tech Award in Health & Social Care – This qualification is worth the equivalent of one GCSE.

    Mandatory examined (exam) units:

    Component 3 – Health and Wellbeing

    Mandatory internally assessed (coursework) units:

    Component 1 – Human Lifespan Development

    Component 2 – Health and Social Care Services and Values


    Level 2: Pass, Merit, Distinction, Distinction*

    Level 1: Pass, Merit, Distinction

    This is graded for each of the three components and the points from each unit then added up to produce an overall outcome. The highest grade available is a Level 2 Distinction *, which is the equivalent of a GCSE grade 8.5.

    Learning Journey

    BTEC Health Learning Journey





  • History

    History Department

    Learning Journey

    Learning Journey History Year 9

    Learning Journey History Year 10

    Learning Journey History Year 11

  • ICT

    Subject philosophy/ purpose

    We live in a world where our lives are surrounded by ever changing technology. Our aim is to inspire the young minds of today to embrace this technology by peeling back the layers and enabling our learners to fully comprehend what makes our digital world tick. The ultimate goal for our curriculum is to provide the knowledge/skills required for students to engage confidently with state-of-the-art developments in Computing and ICT.


    The increasing use of technology in all aspects of society makes confident, creative and productive use of IT an essential skill for a successful transition into adulthood because computing can be fundamental to successful engagement in modern society.


    Here Westwood College, the computing/ICT compartment is committed to imparting to all students the practical competence, analytical ability and communication skills necessary to work with computing technology later in life.


    Here at Westwood College, our department truly believes that confidence with all facets of computing and ICT has the ability to not only create opportunities for current students, but for future generations as well.


    Curriculum Vision/intent

    The ultimate aim of Computing is to provide students with the tools and skills to be authors and creators, not just consumers of ICT.  In an ever-changing technological world, we aim to ensure that all students can embrace new and existing technology to maximise their learning potential.

    Throughout their time at Westwood, students are provided with opportunities to nurture and develop their ICT/Computing skills with great emphasis on online safety and future proofed skills such as programming.

    We aim to develop skills that enable students to be:

    Future-proofed learners, covering both the historical contexts of the growth of computing and preparing them for the possibilities for future advancement

    Able to decompose problems, breaking complex problems down into manageable chunks which can then be solved independently to boost resilience in the face of the adversity.

    Able to think abstractly and thus focusing on the important elements of a problem and without being discarding by points which confuse the issue.

    Creators and not merely consumers, with a particular focus on making the computer devices work for them

    Enquiring thinkers, aiming to understand how the world around them work and not merely accepting it

    Links to overview of schemes of work:

    Year 9

    BTEC Level 2 (Year 10 and 11)

    Computer Science (Year 10 and 11)

    BTEC Level 3 (year 12 and year 13)


    How can parents support students in ICT/Computing

    Parents can help prepare students for the world of Computing by encouraging your child to explore the following software applications. All applications are completely free and help with the development of sequencing, writing instructions as well as the development and understanding of programming syntax.

    Scratch is a free visual programming language. Scratch is used by students, scholars, teachers, and parents to easily create animations, games, etc. and provide a stepping stone to the more advanced world of computer programming.  https://scratch.mit.edu/scratch_1.4/

    Code Combat is an interactive platform game where students portray a character in a medieval realm, completing different challenges along the way. As the game progresses through different levels so does the challenge.  http://www.codecombat.com

    Code Academy is an online interactive platform that offers free coding classes in 11 different programming languages including Python.  https://www.codecademy.com/



  • Languages


    At Westwood, we aim to enable students to communicate effectively in one or two other languages.  Students develop strategies that help them to become efficient language learners post-16 and therefore increase their opportunities for work, study and fulfilment by being able to communicate with people from other countries and possibly visit, live, work or study abroad. We aim to develop their respect for

    others both in our communities and around the world and we want to build up their cultural

    capital and widen their horizons through a range of class activities, extra-curricular activities and trips.

    Curriculum Intent

    The Languages curriculum at Westwood aims to ensure that all pupils:

    work towards building a vocabulary based on the most common words in the language studied

    develop their knowledge of increasingly complex grammatical structures

    understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic sources and discover and develop an appreciation of a range of writing in the language studied

    speak with increasing confidence, fluency and spontaneity and continually improve the accuracy of their pronunciation and intonation

    can write at varying length, for different purposes and audiences

    deepen their understanding of the world

    achieve success at public examination levels

    become lifelong efficient learners of other languages


    Curriculum Implementation

    Over  the  course  of  their  study  our  students  are  given  the  skills  and  knowledge  to  become confident and independent speakers through phonics, vocabulary and grammar. Learning is organised in a spiral approach and progression is built in the curriculum. Over the course of their learning, students revisit regularly the language they learn and continually practise the skills. We adapt our teaching to cater for the needs, abilities and interests of each individual student. All teachers are Language specialists and have expert knowledge of the languages and countries studied.

    Following a planned programme of phonics, students will know most sound-spelling links in the languages studied by the end of Year 9. Vocabulary and grammar points are re-visited systematically in new contexts, and in extended, less or unscaffolded activities. Grammar points are presented explicitly then practised thoroughly in input and production, which becomes more open-ended and less structured over time

    In Year 9, students setting varies from year to year. In Year 10 students are broadly set into two ability groups, dependant on class sizes. The progress of all Year 9 students is discussed by the department during the year and particularly towards the end of the year, as a prelude to setting in Year 10.

    When students come to Westwood College they continue their study of French begun in Junior High.  Students begin their study of German or Spanish, using the course books Mira and Logo.


    In Years 10 and 11 languages are optional, the course being 5 hours/ fortnight. All sets follow the AQA linear course to GCSE taking either Foundation or Higher Level options as appropriate. AQA Advanced Level French, Spanish and German are taught at the school.


    Students are taught to:

    identify and use tenses or other structures which convey the present, past, and future as appropriate to the language being studied

    use and manipulate a variety of key grammatical structures and patterns, including voices and moods, as appropriate

    develop and use a wide-ranging and deepening vocabulary that goes beyond their immediate needs and interests, allowing them to give and justify opinions and take part in discussion about wider issues

    use accurate grammar, spelling and punctuation

    listen to a variety of forms of spoken language to obtain information and respond appropriately

    transcribe words and short sentences that they hear with increasing accuracy

    initiate and develop conversations, coping with unfamiliar language and unexpected responses, making use of important social conventions such as formal modes of address

    express and develop ideas clearly and with increasing accuracy, both orally and in writing

    speak coherently and confidently, with increasingly accurate pronunciation and intonation

    read and show comprehension of original and adapted materials from a range of different sources, understanding the purpose, important ideas and details, and provide an accurate English translation of short, suitable material

    read literary texts in the language [such as stories, songs, poems and letters] to stimulate ideas, develop creative expression and expand understanding of the language and culture

    write prose using an increasingly wide range of grammar and vocabulary, write creatively to express their own ideas and opinions, and translate short written text accurately into the foreign language


    Our exchange link with the “Theodor-Heuss-Realschule” in Walldorf, Germany, is offered to students studying German in Year 10.  Study visits to Spain (Year 10), Berlin (Year 12 and 13) and Paris (Years 10 and) also offer curriculum enrichment.

    The school regularly enters the Linguistic Olympiad and the club is open to all Sixth Form students.

    Sixth Form students mentor younger students and help them prepare for exams.

    We enjoy good links with Higher Education providers and gifted and talented students have participated in many events, in and away from school, designed to encourage continued study.



    Regular assessments of the students’ progress in the curriculum are conducted and noted on schemes of work, these assessments measure skills gained over a sequence of lessons, including the ability to produce longer stretches of language and more complex language. Regularly planned, more frequent and less formal checks measure specific knowledge such as vocabulary and grammar after certain lessons and homework.

    Students are expected to act upon advice given by teachers. Teachers give specific tasks in feedback in order to help students progress through areas for improvement.

    Four cycles of data reporting inform parents about their child’s progress. These data cycles also inform the Subject Leader who identifies gaps and strategies to address them in fortnightly meetings with SLT.

    Learning Journey

    French Learning Journey Year 9

    French Learning Journey Year 10

    French Learning Journey Year 11

    Spanish Learning Journey Year 9

    Spanish Learning Journey Year 10

    Spanish Learning Journey Year 11

    German Learning Journey Year 9

    German Learning Journey Year 10

    German Learning Journey Year 11

  • Media Studies

    Subject philosophy/ purpose

    Studying Media Studies at Westwood College is about understanding the world around us in relation to the media processes and how the world around us is represented. As the media plays a central role in contemporary society it shapes our perceptions of the world and provides us with ways to communicate and engage with those around us. It is the aim of the curriculum in Media Studies to enable students to become media literate in an increasingly digital age and be in a strong position for the future to make sense of the media and how meaning is communicated. The curriculum challenges students to analyse a range of different media texts, becoming active audiences, as opposed to passive ones. As part of Key Stage 3, students are introduced to different media texts through their English curriculum, exploring: representation of character in film/moving image; technical codes /camera angles in storyboards; visual codes and conventions in print-based advertising. At Key Stage 4 students can build on these key skills and are given opportunities to apply them to set texts and unfamiliar contexts.

    Curriculum Vision/intents

    Foster a love the Media; students are encouraged to engage in conversation about a variety of media forms and explore them in greater depth.

    Develop confidence in creative application of media concepts by learning the skills required to reproduce existing or create wholly original, media texts.

    To nurture a sense of curiosity regarding industry processes. Appreciating how different media texts have been structured in a way to create a variety of messages and effects.

    That students form good relationships with staff and students, forming a professional working relationship that reflects that of a mature working environment. Learning the interpersonal skills often required in all manner of industries.

    Lead to academic success: our curriculum design must lead to significant progress for students of all abilities and inspire students to continue studying Media beyond Key Stage 5.

    Curriculum Implementation

    Years 9, 10 and 11

    The Media Studies department has structured the 2-year course that helps support students in becoming confident analytical and creative skills. The varied approach to lessons, balancing practical activities with written analysis, aims to ensure that all students are able to access the content in a way that helps enage them and nurture their curiosity, helping them reach their potential.

    The first term of Year 10 starts with an introduction to key media concepts, before studying the ‘TV Crime Drama’ and ‘Film, Advertising and Videogame Industry’ units. Throughout each of these units, students learn about industry processes, target audiences, as well as the ability to deconstruct media texts. The transition from Year 10 into Year 11 allows students to demonstrate their knowledge, understanding and creative skillset by working on an independent creative portfolio. In previous years this has required students to apply their understanding of the principles of photography and image design in ode to produce an original magazine front cover and double page article. Year 11 continues with studying the ‘Newspaper’ and ‘Music and Radio’ units. These units allow students to explore regulation, political influence, and audience demographics in further detail.


    Years 12 and 13

    At Key Stage 5 we offer OCR A level Media Studies, which allows students who have previously studied Media Studies with us to continue building on familiar concepts, whilst making itself accessible for people who are new to the subject. More information, including specifications and course materials, can be found here:



    Links to overview of case study content and sample resources:


    Learning Journey

    Learning Journey Media Year 10

    Learning Journey Media Year 11

  • Music

    Music is everywhere in the human experience and we engage with it on a daily basis, from the music we choose to listen to to the music we encounter through media exposure. Music forms a backdrop to our experiences, being present at occasions from celebrations to sporting events. It is a medium through which we can express ourselves, reflect on our life-experiences and connect with others. Music is a universal language and learning about music teaches us about others and about different perspectives. Music is natural and innate, from the rhythm of our heartbeat to the melodic undulations of the spoken voice.


    Since music is so central to our lives, the aims of music study are to equip all young people with a life-long enjoyment of music, to develop their appreciation of how music ‘works’ and to nurture the talents and creativity of all students. Music study also makes a significant contribution to a young person’s holistic development: development of intellectual, mental, physical, emotional, and social abilities.


    Curriculum implementation: KS3

    All students in Year 9 receive two lessons of music per fortnight, developing their understanding of music through performing, composing, listening and appraising. Students learn about music in a positive and supportive environment and individual achievement at all levels is celebrated; they are encouraged to respect the achievements and creativity of their peers alongside those of prominent musicians. The learning environment is like no other: lessons are frequently practical, involving practise and performance, creative thinking and opportunities to enjoy listening to music.


    There are three interrelated strands of musical learning:


    Performing: students express themselves, develop motor skills, refine instrumental technique, grow in confidence as musicians and gain a sense of achievement through performance activities.


    Composing: students improvise short motifs and learn to extend and organise their music ideas whilst meeting a set brief, promoting creative thinking.


    Appraising: students engage in listening work and prepare written responses to music, in note-form or prose. They learn about the context in which music was created and develop understanding of the way composers use musical elements to create particular effects.



    Students access practical tasks through a variety of notations, including staff notation, chord symbols and drum maps, and experience playing music on different instruments. They prepare work individually, in small groups and as a whole class.




    Progression from KS3

    The KS3 curriculum is designed to equip students with underpinning knowledge of musical elements to support progression to KS4 for those that wish to take Music as an option subject.


    However, for those that choose not to continue with formal study of Music beyond KS3, the curriculum is a fabulous source for development of skills transferrable to future study and employment such as:

    working to briefs

    effective collaboration





    taking responsibility

    presenting their ideas to others

    critical reflection

    creative thinking

    communication skills.


    Students will also understand how music can support development of life skills, such as confidence, self-awareness, perseverance and self-discipline.



    Music as an option subject

    Students at KS4 and KS5 follow the Edexcel GCSE and A Level Specifications through which they build a detailed knowledge of different approaches to controlling musical elements. They study set works covering a broad range of genres from the worlds of classical, popular, film and TV to fusions synthesising ethnic and folk traditions with other styles. They develop in-depth knowledge of the conventions of music theory and learn how to deploy these in their own composition work, identify them in their performance work and recognise them aurally.


    Students develop practical skills whilst learning about set works and in preparation for performance assessments, using their own instrument or classroom instruments such as keyboards. They complete a range of compositional exercises using a variety of techniques, but are encouraged to find their own ‘voice’ – their unique style – as composers whilst drawing on the wide range of techniques they have discovered in their study of set works. They learn how to use computer software and/or multitrack recording as a medium for composition, and are able to make informed and individual choices about the methods used to progress their work.


    Music students at GCSE and A Level love listening to a range of music and demonstrate an open-minded approach to learning about different pieces; they are encouraged to make connections between their personal listening and performing choices and the music they experience through the curriculum. They develop a sophisticated vocabulary through analysing and appraising music and write at length about music, developing literacy.



    Opportunities for learning beyond the curriculum

    Alongside curricular music lessons, all students are invited to participate in instrumental music lessons with our peripatetic music provider, Music for Life, which offers a range of instrumental disciplines.


    There is also a programme of performance events across the year and regular rehearsals of the school instrumental and vocal groups.


    Beyond school: careers in Music

    Studying music can lead to directly and indirectly linked careers including the following:

    Music producer

    Music therapist


    Private music teacher

    Secondary school teacher

    Sound designer

    Sound engineer

    Sound technician in broadcasting

    Special effects technician

    Arts administrator


    Community arts worker

    Event manager

    Marketing executive

    Radio broadcast assistant

    Radio producer

    Talent agent

    Theatre stage manager


    Musicians can be employed within the following fields:

    music production companies – creative and administrative roles

    music retailers

    media organisations – including music magazines and licensing bodies

    schools and colleges

    orchestras, opera companies and touring companies

    travel industry companies, e.g. hotels, summer camps and cruises

    mental healthcare providers and charitable organisations

    the armed forces

    a range of employers in the cultural and creative industries including film and gaming companies.

    Increasingly, employers are turning to music graduates for the broad skillset they can offer.


    Year 9/KS3 Music Curriculum Map (2021-2022)


     Autumn Term IAutumn Term IISpring Term ISpring Term IISummer Term ISummer Term II
    Practical skills§   Performing rhythms on percussion instruments

    §   Body percussion

    §   Performing different types of beat using drum setting on keyboard

    §   Playing triads with various fingerings

    §   Performing 4-bar chord sequences

    §   Playing scales with correct fingering

    §   Playing a 12 bar blues in C and then A

    §   Playing a walking bassline

    §   Playing a stop chorus

    §   Playing a riff

    §   Refining blues performance skills

    §   Demonstrating ensemble skills through blues group performance

    §   Singing in a blues/rock’n’roll style

    §   Playing film music excerpt with RH melody and LH accompaniment

    §   Learning how to play a tremolo

    §   Learning to play a musical ostinato

    §   Playing with articulation (‘staccato’ and ‘accents’)

    §   Learning to play cluster chord and ‘James Bond’ chord


    §   Performing film music composition, in ‘real-time’ to a video clip

    Final creative project:

    §   Free performance

    §   Free composition

    §   Research and presentation






    Creativity§   Composing rhythmic ostinati§   Composing chord progressions§   Exploring different ways of playing chords

    §   Improvising on a pentatonic scale


    §   Creating a 12-bar blues performance

    §   Creating own blues lyrics

    §   Creating a tremolo, ostinato, cluster chord, and ‘feature’ extension chord§   Creating a piece of film music which uses the clichés explored

    §   Makes choices about use of pitch, sonority, rhythm and texture

    Technical knowledge§   Understanding rhythm notation (staff and drum maps)

    §   Comparing rock beats, dance beats, one-drop (Reggae)

    §   Discussion of the Elements of Music

    §   Knowing the notes of the keyboard

    §   Using all five fingers to perform chords

    §   Understanding chord symbols

    §   Building triads and the difference between major and minor chords

    §   Understanding how chord progressions underpin music

    §   Different ways of playing chords (sustained, rhythmic, broken)

    §   Understanding how major scales are formed

    §   Learning about the primary triads (chords I, IV and V) and how these are related to key and different in different keys

    §   Using added 7ths

    §   Learning about the pentatonic scale

    §   Call and response

    §   Understanding how scales are formed

    §   Learning about the primary triads (chords I, IV and V) and how these are different in different keys

    §   Using added 7ths

    §   Learning about the pentatonic scale

    §   Call and response

    §   How to correctly warm-up the voice

    §   Understanding the role(s) of music in film

    §   Understanding film music clichés and their impact:

    §   Tremolo

    §   Melodic ostinato

    §   and development

    §   Dissonance: forming cluster chords (‘Star Wars’)

    §   Forming extension chords (‘James Bond chord’)

    §   Accented notes and chord stabs

    §   Understanding the role(s) of music in film

    §   Understanding film music clichés and their impact

    Appraising and context§   Completing baseline assessment, which includes tasks on the musical elements and listening assessments§   Learning about chord progressions in the popular song§   Listening to music from the Blues tradition


    §   Listening to music from the Blues tradition, including assessed listening task

    §   Learning about the Blues as a form of protest song and its connections with Hip Hop

    §   Listening to the theme from ‘Jaws’

    §   Enjoying the ‘Movie Theme Quiz’


    §   Listening to film music, including assessed listening task


    KS4 Music Curriculum Map: Year 10 (2021-2022)


     Autumn Term IAutumn Term IISpring Term ISpring Term IISummer Term ISummer Term II
    Knowledge and understanding§   Understanding the elements of music

    §   Building vocabulary to describe the elements of music

    §   Consolidating understanding of staff notation

    §   Applying vocabulary when appraising

    §   Set work: Purcell Music for a While

    §   Introduction to musical periods – focus on Baroque

    §   Set work: Queen Killer Queen

    §   Introduction to music technology

    §   Set work: Bach Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 in D major, mvt. 3


    §   Set work: Beethoven Sonata No. 8 in C minor, ‘Pathetique’, mvt 2

    §   Introduction to Classical and Romantic periods of music

    §   Set work: Stephen Schwartz Defying Gravity from Wicked

    §   Introduction to musicals

    Creative skills§   Performing rhythmic and melodic patterns

    §   Short composing tasks related to understanding the application of each musical elements

    §   Learning how to use software for composition

    §   Composing a ground bass piece§   Composing using drum beats§   Composing counterpoint/polyphonic music§   Free choice composition§   Continuing work on free composition

    §   Preparing for performance assessments



    KS4 Music Curriculum Map: Year 11 (2022-2023)


     Autumn Term IAutumn Term IISpring Term ISpring Term IISummer Term I
    Knowledge and understanding§   Set work: John Williams Star Wars Main Title and Rebel Blockade Runner

    §   Set work: Afro Celt Sound System Release

    §   Revisiting set works in preparation for trial exam§   Set work: Esperanza Spalding Samba Em Preludio§   Consolidating understanding of set works/revision programme


    §   Consolidating understanding of set works/revision programme

    §   Exam preparation

    Creative skills§   Complete free composition

    §   Begin composition to a brief set by exam board

    §   Preparing for performance assessments

    §   Composition to a brief

    §   Preparing for performance assessments

    §   Composition to a brief

    §   Preparing for performance assessments

    §   Finalising compositions and performances

    KS5 Music Curriculum Map: Year 12 (2021-2022)


     Autumn Term IAutumn Term IISpring Term ISpring Term IISummer Term ISummer Term II
    Knowledge and understanding§   Set works: Kate Bush Hounds of Love, Danny Elfman Batman Returns

    §   Music theory conventions: SATB harmonisation

    §   Set work: Saariaho Petals

    §   Music theory conventions: SATB harmonisation

    §   Set work: Courtney Pine Back In The Day

    §   Music theory conventions: SATB harmonisation

    §   Set works: Bach Ein Feste Burg Ist Unser Gott, C. Schumann Piano Trio in Gm, mvt 1

    §   Music theory conventions: arrangement


    §   Set work: Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique, mvt 1

    §   Music theory conventions: arrangement



    §   Set works: Debussy Pagodes, Vaughan Williams On Wenlock Edge

    §   Music theory conventions: arrangement


    Creative skills§   Harmonising SATB exercises

    §   Composing skills: using defining features



    §   Harmonising SATB exercises

    §   Composing skills: harmonising a melody; disposing chords

    §   Harmonising SATB exercises

    §   Composing skills: circle of fifths; using inversions and extensions; disposing chords


    §   Arrangement exercises

    §   Composing skills: fugal writing/counterpoint

    §   Arrangement exercises

    §   Free choice composition

    §   Arrangement exercises

    §   Continuing work on free composition



    KS5 Music Curriculum Map: Year 13 (2022-2023)


     Autumn Term IAutumn Term IISpring Term ISpring Term IISummer Term I
    Knowledge and understanding§   Set works: The Beatles Revolver, Bernard Herrmann Psycho§   Set works: Stravinsky Rite of Spring§   Set work: Anoushka Shankar Breathing Under Water§   Consolidating understanding of set works/revision programme


    §   Consolidating understanding of set works/revision programme

    §   Exam preparation

    Creative skills§   Continuing work on free composition

    §   Composing using briefs exercises

    §   Preparing for performance assessments

    §   Continuing work on free composition

    §   Composing using briefs exercises

    §   Preparing for performance assessments

    §   Continuing work on free composition

    §   Composing using briefs exercises

    §   Preparing for performance assessments

    §   Finalising compositions and performances§   Completing Briefs Assessing Technique NEA


  • Personal Development

    Personal Development at Westwood, or ‘PD’ for short, is the subject through which the bulk of the statutory Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) and Health Education (2020) is taught. Full details of the statutory content is available from RSE and Health Statutory Guidance on the government website.


    Westwood prioritises PD by enabling all students in Years 9 to 11 to receive two lessons each fortnight where awareness of holistic health (positive relationships, physical and sexual health and mental wellbeing) is nurtured. The core intent of the subject is ensuring our young people learn the knowledge and skills to make safe, informed and healthy choices as they progress through to adult life. Students also learn to recognise when an individual is at risk or may need help, and they will understand where to seek help. They should also grow to appreciate their roles and responsibilities with respect to both others and themselves. Additionally, they explore the value of exercise, the outdoors and involvement in hobbies and interests for their wellbeing and development. Students are encouraged to express their ideas and opinions in a safe, non-judgmental learning environment, whilst also developing and demonstrating mutual respect for each other.


    The RSE themes explored through the PD curriculum encompass:


    Respectful relationships, including friendships

    Online and media

    Being safe

    Intimate and sexual relationships, including sexual health


    Students also learn about the Law with regard to:


    Consent, including the age of consent

    Violence against women and girls

    Online behaviours, including image and information sharing (including sexting, youth-produced sexual imagery, nudes, etc.)




    Gender identity

    Substance misuse

    Violence and exploitation by gangs

    Extremism and radicalisation

    Criminal exploitation, for example, through gang involvement or ‘county lines’ drugs operations

    Hate crime

    Female genital mutilation (FGM)

    With regard to Health Education, the themes covered in PD are:

    Mental wellbeing

    Internet safety and harms

    Physical health and fitness

    Healthy eating

    Drugs, alcohol and tobacco

    Health and prevention

    Basic first aid

    Changing adolescent body



    As students grow to understand themselves, PD plays a vital role in promoting inclusivity, equality and respect and is a forum to explore diversity in relationships. When teaching about LGBTQ+, content is integrated into the resources used rather than taught as stand-alone lessons.




    The resources used to deliver content allow for the concepts explored to be embedded, often over several lessons. The majority of the resources are published by the PHSE Association, Quality Marked by the Association as high-quality resources, or recommended by it, such as those from PHE. Such resources are age-appropriate, developed by specialists and include teacher guidance on good practice when delivering content. The resources selected prompt classroom discussion and reflection, which also enables our young people to express their ideas and opinions in a non-judgmental environment and to show respect for each other and for differing opinions.



    Learning beyond PD lessons

    There are further opportunities for students to learn about the RSE and Health themes explored through PD. These include, but are not limited to:

    Curricula in other subjects: PE and Science

    Diversity Week

    Enrichment activities

    NCS (Year 11)


    3-Year Curriculum Map

    The themes explored across KS3-KS4 are shown in the table below. The colour shows the aspect of RSE and Health being explored, whether related to physical health, mental wellbeing, etc. However, it is recognised that these themes interact, e.g. financial wellbeing affects mental health; healthy sleep and good nutrition are important for supporting mental wellbeing; mental ill-health impacts capability to assess risk and make decisions; and positive romantic relationships should support healthy attitudes to intimacy and sex.


    Year 9Year 10Year 11
    Holistic HealthMental Health: New Challenges, Reframing Negative Thinking, Recognising Mental Ill-Health and Promoting WellbeingPhysical and Mental Wellbeing
    Commitment (relationships and beyond)SleepTesticular Cancer
    Preventing Involvement in Serious CrimeFood Choices, Exercise and Balanced LifestylesBreast Cancer
    Forming Positive RelationshipsFood labelling and packagingFamily Life: Long Term Commitment, Marriage, Parenting
    Gangs: Managing Risks and Staying SafeCancer: what is it? Melanoma.Fertility and Pregnancy Choices
    Handling DisclosuresTattooing and Body PiercingExam Stress
    PubertyHIV and AIDSEconomic Wellbeing/Finance
    Health: from here to where?

    Influences on decision-making; taking responsibility for our health decisions

    Relationships Abuse, Consent and Sharing Sexual ImagesExam Preparation (including Study Skills) and independent study, from March à May
    Smoking, Alcohol and DrugsOnline Pornography 
    Mental Health: attitudes to mental health, promoting emotional well-being, healthy and unhealthy coping strategiesOnline Blackmail 
    Relationships and Sex Education: Starting out, Consent, STIs and Contraception, Relationships, PregnancyRelationship Safety (Stalking) 
    Bullying and CyberbullyingBody Image and Self-Esteem 
    Online Safety and Sexting: Healthy and Unhealthy Relationships Online, NudesKnife-Crime/Knife-Free: positive choices and role models 
    Online Coercion and Decision-MakingInclusion, Belonging and Addressing Extremism 
    Child Sexual ExploitationViolence against Women and Girls: FGM and Forced Marriage 


  • Psychology

    Subject Philosophy/Purpose

    Psychology is the scientific study of the mind which helps us to understand how the mind dictates and influences our behaviour, from communication and memory to thought and emotion. This study takes place through observation, measurement, and testing, in order to form conclusions that are based on scientific methodology.  Psychology is a multifaceted discipline and includes many different fields of study such as human development, sports, health, clinical, social behaviour and cognitive processes. It is about understanding what makes people ‘tick’ and how this understanding can help us address many of the problems and issues in society today such as addiction, crime, stress, the impact of social media on relationships and mental health, to name a few.

    As a science in the wider world psychology is a thriving academic discipline and a vital professional practice.  It is a popular and exciting A level subject which challenges its students academically and on a personal level.  Psychological knowledge and skills gained through studying the subject are vital in direct psychology-based careers: clinical psychologist, forensic psychologist, educational psychologist, health psychologist, sports psychologist but can also be transferred to wider career paths in health, education, the police force, human resources, therapy, social work and social researcher.

    Curriculum Vision/Intentions

    The curriculum encourages our students to become passionate about psychology and understand the wider social impact that it has.  They are taught skills to analyses and evaluate studies and theories that attempt to explain human behaviour and understand the impact that this can have upon the individual and society.  We hope that they leave the course with a secure knowledge about mental health issues, feeling confident to challenge discrimination and prejudice and play their part in making the world more just for all. Students are shown how psychology can complement their others subject choices at A level such as Biology, Art, Mathematics, Physical Education and the role it can play in their future careers.

    Psychology students will:

    Have an effective introduction to Psychology

    Be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of psychological concepts, research studies, research methods and ethical issues in relation to topics studied

    Be able to evaluate therapies and treatments for mental health issues including their appropriateness and effectiveness

    Learn skills valued by Higher Education and employers such as critical analysis, independent thinking and research

    We provide secure and purposeful environment for learning and discussion, with student/teacher relationships being a real strength within the department.  From this we are able to inspire students to succeed, achieving their potential and pursue careers and academic study beyond Key Stage 5.

    Curriculum Implementation

    Psychology is offered at Key Stage 5, students following the A Level AQA Psychology specification.

    Across Year 12 and Year 13 students are taught approaches and methods related to the core areas of Psychology such as cognitive, social, biological, developmental, individual differences and research methods.  In addition, they are taught issues and debates and a range of topics options such as relationships, forensic and schizophrenia.  They are regularly assessed to develop their understanding of the topics and the skills required for the external examinations that take place at the end of Year 13.  Students sit three, two hour exams to determine their A level grade in the subject.

    Further detailed information about the A level course content can be found at:


    The link below also provides the schemes of work for content taught in Year 12 and Year 13.

    A Level Psychology

    Extracurricular Activities

    The department provides extra group and individual revision for students prior to assessments.  We are excited to expand our links with local university providers to allow our students to be part of research and explore psychology from a more practical perspective.

    Psychology Learning Journey Year 12

    Psychology Learning Journey Year 13

  • Physical Education

    Subject Philosophy

    PE is a core subject allowing young people to enjoy and succeed in many kinds of sports and activities. It plays a key part in the personal development of young people, improving confidence and social skills as well as both their mental and physical health. It is known to contribute to improved behavior and outcomes for young people and allows them to lead active and healthy lifestyles throughout their lives.

    Our examination courses will support students to go on and study university courses in many different sports related courses including:

    Sports science, sports coaching, sports performance, exercise and fitness, sports administration, sports journalism, physiotherapy, sports marketing and business.

    Apprenticeships in the sports industry are also widely available with current opportunities in:

    Sports reporter, sports coach, media and marketing for football clubs, grounds person, F1 race mechanic, sports teaching assistant, physical training.

    Study in Physical Education or strong physical attributes can also lead to associated careers in:

    Personal training, teaching and coaching, physiotherapy, professional sportsperson or official, development officers, sports science, nutritionist or biomechanics, emergency services and armed forces.


    Curriculum vision / intent


    Through our core PE lessons our overall intent is for our students to continue to take part in and enjoy physical activity and sport when they leave Westwood.


    In order to achieve this we aim for our students to:


    * Understand the importance of physical health and wellbeing

    * Enjoy sport and exercise

    * Have opportunities to be competitive

    * Learn and develop their skills in a variety of activities

    * Develop and apply strategies and tactics in a range of sports

    * Develop interpersonal skills such as social skills, teamwork and leadership

    * Develop personal skills such as self-confidence, resilience, ambition, pride and respect.

    * Maintaining and developing physical fitness and health


    The examination courses we offer have the final aims of allowing our students to achieve academic success and go on to be able to use their acquired knowledge and skills to study at higher levels or go on to enter careers in the sports industry.


    In order to achieve this we will aim to:


    * Develop their skills, strategies and physical attributes for specific sports.

    * Support the understanding of how physical, psychological and social factors can influence an individuals participation or performances levels in sport and exercise.

    * Develop confidence in presentation and communication skills.


    Curriculum Implementation


    All Y9-11 students access a wide range of sports and activities in our core PE sessions, having 3-4hrs per fortnight as dedicated practical sessions. (Y9 /11 – 4hrs, Y10 – 3hrs)

    The activities will build on what has been learnt at Churnet View and St Edwards, including team and individual sports as well as activities relating to fitness and health. We also offer opportunities for students to experience different sports, transferring their knowledge or learning new skills.


    In Y9 students are taught in tutor groups but as they move into Y10/11 this becomes more ability grouping as they are taught in half year groups. This allows us to support the development of individuals students more fully and ensure the curriculum is more enjoyable and inclusive.


    Core PE – Overview


    For examination courses in Y10 /11 we offer AQA GCSE PE or BTEC Certificate in Sport, the different styles of courses mean we can allow a wider range of students to access examined courses at KS4 and achieve success in these. There is a mixture of coursework and practical attainment which is assessed throughout the courses and an external examination of theoretical knowledge to assess the students at the of the course or unit.


    GCSE PE – Overview

    BTEC Level 2 – Overview


    At KS5 we offer 3 courses, OCR A Level PE and BTEC National Certificate (1 A Level equivalent) or BTEC National Diploma (2 A Level equivalent) in Sport.

    The students have access to 8hrs teaching per fortnight in Y12 and 9hrs in Y13. Our BTEC National course is run collaboratively with Leek High.


    BTEC Level 3 – Overview

    A Level PE – Overview




    Westwood offer a large range of opportunities for students to get involved in sport outside of lessons at both lunchtimes and after school. The students can take part purely for enjoyment, they can choose to represent their house in the inter-house competitions run throughout the year or to represent the school in the District, County and National competitions that we enter annually.

    We also offer leadership experiences with our sixth formers having opportunities to support lower school lessons as well as the extra-curricular program we offer and lower school students being able to support the middle and first schools with tournaments and sports days as well as attending extra-curricular practices and being lunchtime play assistants. Club links is also important to us and we have had coaches from local clubs in to lead sessions, most recently in rugby.

    Learning Journey

    PE Learning Journey Core

    PE Learning Journey GCSE

    PE Learning Journey A Level

    PE Learning Journey BTEC


  • Religious Education

    Subject Philosophy/Purpose

    Religious Education is a subject that is fundamental to an individual’s understanding about wider social issues.  Whether we are personally religious or not, religion has historically shaped the society we live in and continues to do so.  In an ever-growing multicultural society, it is vitally important that students are given the opportunity to study, understand and respect different religious beliefs.  RE explores the social and philosophical meanings that individuals and groups make of their experiences and how this helps them give purpose to their lives as well as exploring the morality around many common day issues that we face in our society.

    RE has a longstanding history of being a popular subject at Westwood which challenges students academically, morally and philosophically.  It is a subject that has many benefits to future career paths such as a Chaplin, working in education, health care, charity fundraiser/officer, community development worker, equality, diversity and inclusion officer, solicitor, youth worker and police officer.

    Curriculum Vision/Intentions

    The aim of the curriculum is to enthuse our students about different religions, to become passionate about moral issues that we face in our society and to be accepting of others beliefs.  Through the study of RE students will have the opportunity to reflect upon their experiences and the mysteries of life and the contribution of religious and spiritual views in understanding experiences.

    Religious Studies should enable pupils to:

    • Develop knowledge and understanding of Christianity that they have learnt as a key religion in Middle School as well as other religions such as Islam
    • Develop an understanding of how beliefs, values and traditions impact on individuals and society as a whole
    • Develop the ability to make reasoned and informed judgements about religious and moral issues
    • Enhance their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development by:
      • developing awareness of the ultimate questions of life raised; life after death
      • responding to such questions with reference to the teachings and practices
    • Develop positive attitudes:
      • of respect towards other people who hold views and beliefs different from their own
      • towards living in and contributing to an inclusive and caring community and a society of diverse religions

    The teaching environment fosters a safe space for students to express their opinions, teacher student relationships are a strength in the department.  We help students to apply their knowledge of RE to others subject areas such as Biology, Art, History, English, enabling and inspiring them to achieve highly.

    We aspire for all students to complete Key Stage 4 with the skills, knowledge and understanding of the world that enables them to be healthy, thoughtful and responsible individuals. We aim to support students in fulfilling their potential, helping them to achieve the highest possible results, progress and attainment.

    Curriculum Implementation

    In Year 9 students have 2x 60-minute sessions per timetable cycle, in mixed ability groups, where they are taught three topics: The Problem of Evil, Medical Ethical and Symbolism.  These topics allow students to build on their knowledge and understanding and skills developed during RE in the Middle school, whilst also preparing them for the content studied at Key Stage 4 for the GCSE and non-examined RE course.

    The link below contains schemes of work for the Year 9 course.

    Year 9 RE SOW

    At Key Stage 4 students can opt to continue on a GCSE course, the AQA Syllabus A in Christianity, Islam and Ethical studies.  Students have 5x 60-minute sessions per timetable cycle.

    The AQA Religious Studies Syllabus A GCSE is monitored continually through the course for progress, with exam style assessments and full past papers trial exams.  Students sit 2 exams at the end of Year 11 where they receive 1 overall GSCE grade 1-9.

    • Paper 1 – The Study of Religions
      The 4 units of study are:
      Christian Beliefs; Christian Practices; Islamic Beliefs; Islamic Practices
    • Paper 2 – Thematic Studies
      The 4 units of study are: Human Rights; Religion and life; Religion, Peace and Conflict; Religion, Crime and Punishment

    Further detailed information on the specification can be found on the link below.


    The link below contains schemes of work for the GCSE course.

    GCSE SOW, Year 10 and 11


    The department provides extra group and individual revision for students prior to assessments.  We are excited to expand our links with the local and wider community through charity work.

    Learning Journey

    RE Learning Journey Year 9

    RE Learning Journey Year 10

    RE Learning Journey Year 11

  • Sociology

    Subject Philosophy/Purpose

    Sociology is the study of the structure and function of society. Sociologists study a wide range of themes within society such as families, education, religion and crime. All topics are analysed through the main Sociological perspectives that all have their own opinion on the factors that divide and oppress society, these include Functionalists, Marxists, Feminists and the New Right. Sociology draws on the work of many disciplines and draws on theories from Psychology, History, Politics and English Literature.


    Sociology enables students to challenge their preconceived ideas regarding society and the systems we currently have in place. As a subject it can be studied as a Single Honours at university or can be paired up with a variety of subjects such as Criminology and Psychology as a Dual Honours. Upon completion of a degree students follow a range of career paths such as probation service, marketing, journalism, social work, counselling, teaching or public relations and communication, crime scene investigation, government officer roles, and social research.

    Sociology is a popular A Level subject that allows students to question society on a micro and macro level. The subject helps to enhance a number of skills such as essay writing, debating, analysis and evaluation.


    Curriculum Vision/Intentions

    Sociology encourages students to discuss topics within society that we ordinarily take for granted. The subject allows students to question the inequalities and barriers we often accept. Students leave the course having a better understanding of how society operates and an understanding of discrimination and barriers that many will face. Students studying Sociology combine their A Level complementing subjects such as Psychology, English Literature, Health and Social Care and English Literature.


    Sociology students will

    • Have an effective introduction to Sociology
    • Be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of concepts, research studies, research methods and ethical issues in relation to topics studied
    • Be able to evaluate the main Sociological perspectives such as Functionalism, Marxism, Feminism and the New Right
    • Learn skills valued by Higher Education and employers such as critical analysis, independent thinking and research

    We provide secure and purposeful environment for learning and discussion, with student/teacher relationships being a real strength within the department. From this we are able to inspire students to succeed, achieving their potential and pursue careers and academic study beyond Key Stage 5.


    Curriculum Implementation

    Sociology is offered at Key Stage 5, students following the A Level AQA Psychology specification.

    Across Year 12 and Year 13 students are taught perspectives and research relating to the curriculum areas of Families and Household, Education and Research Methods. In Year 13 students investigate Beliefs in Society and Crime and Deviance.

    They are regularly assessed to develop their understanding of the topics and the skills required for the external examinations that take place at the end of Year 13.  Students sit three, two-hour exams to determine their A level grade in the subject.

    Further detailed information about the A level course content can be found at:


    The link below also provides the schemes of work for content taught in Year 12 and Year 13.

    A Level Sociology

    Extracurricular Activities

    The department provides extra group and individual revision for students prior to assessments.  We are excited to expand our links with local university providers to allow our students to be part of research and explore sociology from a more practical perspective.

    Learning Journey

    Sociology Learning Journey Year 12

    Sociology Learning Journey Year 13 Beliefs

    Sociology Learning Journey Year 13 Crime & Deviance

  • Visual Arts

    Subject Philosophy

    Art is present in all aspects of our daily lives. In the department we aim to open students eyes the wealth of rich visual stimulus that surrounds us. We pride ourselves in forming strong positive relationships that build students confidence and trust, enabling them to take creative risks through practical exploration. Developing use of the visual language and allowing all students to fulfil their potential.

    Studying Art, Textiles and Photography leads on to exciting careers in Fashion, Gaming, Interiors, Trends, Animation and many more.


    Curriculum Vision

    Creativity is central to all disciplines in Art, with students learning to develop

    Quality observational drawing provides a solid foundation from which to build, and drawing in its widest forms are celebrated in encouraged. Projects become personal interests





    Curriculum Implementation

    In Year 9, students have the opportunity to explore a wide range of materials, techniques and processes, while extending their knowledge of artists from all disciplines. This enables students to extend their visual vocabulary through experiential learning and build confidence.


    Art is a popular GCSE subject were students follow the AQA specification and complete a portfolio consisting of two sustained projects over the two-year course. As students’ progress through the course, they are able to assert greater independence and taking personal ownership of the creative decision making, with regard to themes, materials and outcomes. Students are encouraged to take creative risks and challenge themselves. In Year 11 students work on an externally set component which is set by AQA. Natural progression is to our A Level courses


    A Level Art, Textiles and Photography disciplines also follow the AQA specifications and focus around one central Personal Investigation of the student’s choice. This highly personal component sees the students explore an area of their chosen discipline that is of particular interest to them, whist exploring relevant contextual sources that continues. In Year 13 students work on an externally set component which is set by AQA.


    Extra Curricular

    The department firmly believes in providing opportunities for students to experience artwork first-hand and facilitate numerous visits to support the GCSE and A Level courses, these have included Tate Galleries, Royal Academy of Arts and The Whitworth amongst others. Internationally, students have the opportunity to take part in residential visits to Paris and New York, where they experience the work of globally recognised artists’ in collections housed in the Louvre, Pompidou Centre, Musee d’Orsay and Museum of Modern Art alongside the buzz of international cities.


    We proudly showcase our superb student artwork in an annual college exhibition, which represents the efforts and hard work of our talented students and is attended by our wider College community. Beyond College, the students artwork has also been on display at the Foxlowe Arts Centre.


    Several students have had photographic work published in professional journals and have also taken part and won awards in Rotary photographic competitions. The College Christmas card is another opportunity we provide for students to shine and is open to all year groups.


    The Art department facilitate popular after College sessions, where students can access extra support or further explore specialist equipment such as the laser cutter, printing press or Adobe Photoshop.


    Department Instagram integrate link in website.

  • Year 11 Trial Examinations Dec 2023

    17 Nov 2023 | BY talentum

    On Wednesday evening the college hosted our ‘Exam Readiness’ evening at which we provided information about the forthcoming Trial Exams, […]

  • November Update

    07 Nov 2023 | BY cburch

    We hope that you and your families enjoyed the half-term break. Please click here for some updates at the beginning of […]