Key Stage 3

Year 7

Students begin their study of English with a transition unit on Storytelling, to develop their oracy skills. Following this they develop their skills in reading and writing, throughout several challenging topics including: Myths and Legends, Science Fiction, and a study of Shakespeare’s villains.

Broadly students are taught in mixed ability groups, however those students who require additional support in reading are taught in a specialised group to fast-track their progress.

Year 8

In Year 8 students are set in ability groups and continue to hone skills in analysis and writing for specific purposes, which will feed into their GCSE studies. Topics include: Poetry, Causes to Fight for, Dracula (play).

Year 9

During Year 9 students graduate from studying Key Stage 3 to Key Stage 4 in the Spring term, when they begin studying their GCSE texts.

Useful Links:

KS3 BBC Bitesize
A catalogue of Accelerated Reader books
Useful reference

GCSE English Language (Exam Board: AQA)

Students will study separate GCSEs in English Language and Literature. Students will draw upon a range of texts as reading stimulus (Non-fiction and Fiction from the 19th, 20th and 21st Century) and engage with creative as well as real and relevant contexts. Students will have opportunities to develop higher-order reading and critical thinking skills.

In GCSE English Language, students work towards 100% terminal examinations. This is comprised of two papers:

Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing (50%)
Paper 2: Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives (50%)

Useful Links:

AQA English Language
BBC Bitesize English Language

GCSE English Literature (EDEXCEL)

In GCSE English Literature, students are also assessed with 100% terminal exams. The papers students sit are:

  • Paper 1: Shakespeare and Post-1914 Literature (50%)
  • Paper 2: 19th-century Novel and Poetry since 1789 (50%)

Typically, students study Macbeth, An Inspector Calls, Frankenstein or A Christmas Carol and the Love and Relationships cluster from the Edexcel Anthology.

There are no longer tiers to the exams, and all students sit the same exam papers, which can be awarded a Grade 1-9.

In order to achieve highly on the course, Students should read widely outside of lessons and ask questions about texts.

Useful Links:



The Mathematics curriculum at Bluecoat Wollaton Academy follows a mastery approach, whilst focussing on the three aims of the National Curriculum: fluency, reasoning and problem solving. Students are encouraged to develop confidence in, and a positive attitude towards mathematics and to recognise the importance of mathematics in their own lives and to society. They will also build a strong mathematical foundation for future studies at higher level post-16. The GCSE course in mathematics enables students to acquire, select and apply mathematical techniques to solve problems; reason mathematically, make deductions and inferences and draw conclusions; comprehend, interpret and communicate mathematical information in a variety of forms appropriate to the information and context.

Throughout their time at Bluecoat Wollaton Academy, students will also be given the opportunity to engage with various numeracy days and mathematical competitions such as the National Young Mathematicians’ Awards and the UK Mathematics Trust’s Maths Challenges.

Year 7

Number is at the heart of our early curriculum as this fundamental strand underpins all other areas of their mathematical journey. In Year 7, the curriculum is strongly linked to the KS2 curriculum to enable students to build on their prior learning and connect this to new concepts. Calculator use is discouraged throughout Year 7 to encourage further fluency with the four basic operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Algebra also runs through every topic.  Students will spend longer periods of time studying each unit of work to ensure a robust and embedded understanding. Higher attaining students are challenged through depth rather than acceleration onto new content.

Year 8

In Year 8 students build on their knowledge and skills gained from Year 7 and KS2 through learning about how to use bar models to understand proportional relationships. Many more algebraic concepts are introduced to enable links to be established between geometry and algebraic manipulation. Calculator use is encouraged in Year 8 alongside regular opportunities for students to practise their mental Maths when appropriate. Students in Year 8 are also introduced to statistical measures and probability.

Year 9

In Year 9, students are introduced to additional algebraic manipulation, working with polynomials. Following this, students continue their study of coordinate geometry, leading to the application of both in the study of quadratic graphs. Students also spend the time working with more advanced 2D and 3D geometric problems, with focus on angles, construction and congruence before the introduction of Pythagoras’ Theorem and the application of surds. Later, students build on the study of probability in Year 8, with the introduction of Venn Diagrams and Frequency Trees.

Year 10

During Year 10 students build on prior learning from subsequent years to learn about Trigonometry and its applications. Additional algebraic techniques are introduced to provide students with more tools for solving complex problems. Links between circles and triangles are investigated and applied to further coordinate geometry problems. Statistical representations are explored with opportunities for students to analyse data in a variety of ways.

Year 11

Tier decisions are made in Year 11 to ensure that students are thoroughly prepared for their GCSE examination in Mathematics. Higher tier students deepen their existing knowledge and skills by exploring further similarity and congruence, vector geometry and loci problems. Foundation students will have an opportunity to further strength and deepen their understanding and knowledge of the most challenging GCSE concepts including working with quadratics and percentage problems. Following mock examinations, bespoke plans are created to suit the needs of individual classes.

Further Mathematics

Students in Year 10 and 11 are given the opportunity to study Further Mathematics to help the transition of students to Mathematics beyond Year 11. AQA Level 2 Certificate in Further Maths is a unique qualification designed to stretch and challenge high achieving mathematicians who either already have, or are expected to achieve the top grades in GCSE Mathematics or are likely to progress to study A-level Mathematics and possibly Further Mathematics. High-achieving students are introduced to AS topics that will help them develop skills in algebra, geometry, calculus, matrices, trigonometry, functions and graphs

Key Stage 3

In year 7 and 8, students are guided by the Exploring Science Scheme of Work that provides a practical, rich learning experience. This not only quenches students’ thirst for knowledge and understanding but also hones their practical skills in preparation for their KS4 studies.

The curriculum is based on five big ideas that underpin all content:

  • Knowledge and Application – describing and explaining scientific processes and phenomena.
  • Research and Independent Learning – extending learning at home by choosing relevant facts and ideas from a range of sources.
  • Investigating – planning ways of collecting valid, reliable, accurate an precise data to use as evidence to answer hypotheses
  • Data Handling – analysing and interpreting data including drawing graphs and manipulating data using equations
  • Concluding and evaluating – evaluating the merits of collective data and drawing valid conclusion from a range of sources

In year 9, GCSE content is introduced whilst still building on and consolidating skills from KS3.

Useful Links:

BBC Bitesize

Further information is available on the Science pages of Honeycomb

Key Stage 4

Students follow the OCR Gateway A suite of Science courses.  The specific course students will follow depends on a number of factors including performance during year nine and discussions with parents.  All students have the opportunity to study ‘Combined Science’ whilst a number of students will be offered the choice of ‘Triple Science’.  In both routes, students will study all three Sciences; Biology, Chemistry and Physics.  The route taken does not affect the chances of students being eligible to study A Level Sciences at post-16.

Assessment is by 6 examinations which cover the content below:

  • Biology: Cell-level systems, Scaling up, Organism-level systems, Community level-systems, Genes, Inheritance and Selection
  • Chemistry: Particles, Elements, Compounds and Mixtures, Chemical Reactions, Predicting and Identifying reactions and products, Monitoring and Controlling chemical reactions
  • Physics: Matter, Forces, Electricity, Magnetism and magnetic fields, Waves in matter, Radioactivity and Energy

Useful Links:

OCR Combined Science
OCR Biology
OCR Chemistry
OCR Physics
BBC Bitesize


At Bluecoat Wollaton Academy our aim is to inspire a love of languages and an appreciation and respect for different cultures. Not only can learning another language help students to improve their understanding of English but also knowledge of another language can be a valuable asset when seeking employment and other opportunities later in life. To help promote the passion for learning languages we run a range of extra-curricular activities which provide a relaxed and fun environment for students to develop their linguistic skills. Furthermore, we have regular trips abroad which offer students opportunities to practise their language skills in a real life setting and to experience the culture of the country first hand. Previous trips have allowed students to explore a variety of Spanish cities, including Madrid, Barcelona and Valencia.

Year 7

Students will study Spanish and start by learning the basics of the language including numbers, colours, pets and free time activities. They will move quickly from word to sentence level and develop the ability to express and explain opinions in the present, past and future tenses. As the year progresses they will be able to talk about a variety of foods and mealtimes, as well as learn phrases to arrange future outings and reflect on previous events. They will end the year learning language to talk about different places in the world as well as the traditions, foods and festivals that originate from Hispanic countries. Assessments will examine the four essential language skills: speaking, reading, listening and writing.

Year 8

In Year 8, our aim is to build upon the foundations made throughout Year 7. Students will start the year talking about their summer holidays, revising and developing their skills in the past tense. They will then extend their vocabulary knowledge from Year 7 to be able to discuss how technology influences their lives and to reflect upon whether they have a healthy lifestyle. This will involve practising writing and speaking in the different tenses as well as learning how to use comparatives and superlatives in Spanish. Later in the year, students will further develop their grammatical skills by learning how to form questions, to use modal verbs and learn phrases in the conditional tense through talking about travelling and student’ daily routines.  Assessments will examine the four essential language skills: speaking, reading, listening and writing.

Year 9

Year 9 allows students to further develop their grammatical skills by refining skills they have previously learnt as well as learning how to form and use reflexive verbs, stem-changing verbs, the conditional tense and the imperfect tense. They will learn these skills through a variety of exciting topics, such as careers, healthy living, children’s rights and the environment. These topics will require students to reflect on how their life has changed as they have grown up and to consider their future plans. Throughout Year 9 they will read more challenging texts and as a result will be able to write more fluently and with a greater level of complexity. Assessments will examine the four essential language skills: speaking, reading, listening and writing.

Year 10

Throughout Year 10, students will acquire a greater grammatical understanding of the Spanish language, including developing an understanding of two new tenses, the present continuous and perfect tense. Students will learn to build upon their existing knowledge to be able to talk with a greater level of sophistication about a range of topics. First of all, students will follow a unit about holidays, where they will expand on vocabulary learnt in previous years to be able to talk about holiday disasters, as well as their ideal holidays and they will look at how to book accommodation. Secondly students will learn about the cultural differences between the UK and Hispanic countries with regards to their education system and students will be able to discuss their own school life including school rules, problems and achievements. Students will then spend time reflecting upon the people in their lives, describing family and friends and their relationships with them as well as discussing making plans to go out and technological preferences. Towards the end of the year students will spend time talking about their interests and influences as well as their region and will be able to talk in detail about their free time activities, role models they follow, places in a town and the area where they live. Assessments will examine the four essential language skills: speaking, reading, listening and writing.

Year 11

Year 11 sees the final preparations before students will sit their GCSE exams at the end of the year. Further details of how these work in languages can be seen below. Students will gain some more sophisticated grammatical skills this year, for example they will understand how to use the passive voice, they will further develop their skills to be able to narrate stories in Spanish, and they will learn to use the present subjunctive, the pluperfect and the imperfect continuous tenses. Firstly, students will learn to discuss traditional Hispanic festivals, traditions and foods and they will be able to make comparisons to festivals celebrated here in the UK. Students will then look to discuss their future employment plans, including talking about work experience, gap years and ambitions they have for the future.  Finally, students will learn about social and global problems, which include a wide variety of contentious problems such as obesity, the environment, homelessness, natural disasters, additions and unemployment. GCSE assessments will examine the four essential language skills: speaking, reading, listening and writing and further details of this breakdown can be seen in the section below.

Spanish GCSE Information

The GCSE content in Languages is split into three themes covering a wide variety of aspects of life in Hispanic countries. Students will use a variety of authentic texts, as well as written and audio resources with an emphasis on grammar, communication and spontaneity. The three themes that make up the GCSE content and their subtopics are:

  • Identity and culture – Me, my friends and family, Technology in everyday life, Free-time activities and Customs and Festivals.
  • Local, national, international and global areas of interest – Home, town, neighbourhood and region, Social issues, Global issues and Travel and tourism.
  • Current and future study and employment – My studies, Education post 16 and Jobs, career choices and employment.

Students are assessed through an exam in each of the 4 skill areas: Speaking, Listening, Reading and Writing each of which is worth 25% of their overall GCSE grade.

Useful Links/Apps:

Memrise – https://www.memrise.com/

Quizlet GCSE – https://www.quizlet.com/bwa-mfl/folders/year-11-spanish/sets

Duolingo – https://www.duolingo.com/

AQA Spanish – https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/languages/gcse/spanish-8698

BBC Bitesize – https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/examspecs/z4yyjhv

Key Stage 3

Year 7

Students are taught chronologically starting with ‘Invasion and Conquest’. Within this topic students study the Romans and the Battle of Hastings in 1066. They then move on to look at ‘Who has the Power?’ This unit focuses upon the War of the Roses. Finally, we study ‘State vs the King’ looking at the Civil War and the Restoration.

Year 8

In Year 8 students begin by looking at ‘Expansion and Empire’, with a specific focus on the slave trade. This then naturally leads onto studying both the World Wars with a real focus of what life was like for soldiers and civilians. ‘Who has the power?’ looks at the changing fortunes of women and children during the early C20th. Students explore the challenges Great Britain faced during the 1950s, 60s and 70s.

Throughout both years students continue to develop key historical skills, as well as building their chronological knowledge. This will hopefully prepare them for the GCSE in History.

Useful Links:


Key Stage 4

GCSE (Exam Board: AQA HISTORY B 8145)
Paper 1 Understanding the Modern World: (1hour 45 mins 50%)

Conflict and Tension 1890-1918

Germany 1890 – 1945, Democracy and Dictatorship

Paper 2: Shaping the Nation (1hour 45 mins 50%)

Britain: Health and the People c1000 to present day

Norman England 1066 – 1100

Students will study both the breadth and depth of History and will develop many skills including; reading and learning about the past, arguing and explaining their opinion, solving problems and learning about multiple points of view. Students will also begin to think creatively to gain a better understanding of the world through the topics studied.

The curriculum allows students to understand change and continuity across a long sweep in History as well as gaining an understanding of the complexities of societies or historical situations. Students are also offered the opportunity to study the impact on people through a variety of perspectives: political, social and cultural, economic, the role of ideas and the contribution of individuals and groups. Shaping the nation helps students to understand the History of Britain and key events, people and developments which have shaped the nation’s History.

In addition the historical environment element of the course allows students to focus on a particular site in its historical context and enables students to study the relationship between a place and historical events and developments. This historic site will change annually.

Useful Links:


Key Stage 3

Year 7

Students learn the fundamentals of map skills and their local geography. They then go on to explore the impacts of volcanoes, extreme environments, climate change and how we can live more sustainably, a country study of China and finally rivers and flooding.

Year 8

Students investigate issues in our local area, such as the Nottingham tram system. They learn about differences in development across the world, plate tectonics, energy resources, the ice age and British and European identity.

Key Stage 4

GCSE (Exam Board: Edexcel B)

Students will learn about the dynamic nature of our planet and the current issues affecting people and the environment today. Students will develop their practical and analytical skills, values, problem solving and decision making abilities through the study of these 3 areas:

  • Paper 1: Global Geographical Issues – 1) Hazardous Earth (Climate and Tectonics), 2) Development Dilemmas, 3) The Challenges of an Urbanising World. The exam is 1 hour 30 minutes. It is worth 37.5% of the final mark.
  • UK Geographical Issues – 4A) Coastal Change and Conflict and 4B)River Processes and Pressures, 5A) Dynamic Inner Cities, 5B) Changing Rural Settlements. The exam is 1 hour 30 minutes. It is worth 37.5% of the final mark. It includes questions on the two fieldwork studies that students will carry out (a river study and a study of contrasts in Nottingham)
  • People and Environmental Issues – 7) People and the Biosphere, 8) Forests Under Threat, 9) Consuming Energy Resources. The exam is 1 hour 15 minutes. It is worth 25% of the final mark. It includes a short resource booklet which students will use to answer the questions and then a Making Geographical Decision task based on the information students have explored in the exam.

Students will undertake 2 full days of fieldwork in preparation for Paper 2 (UK Geographical Issues). One of these will be on a Physical Geography issue (Rivers) and the other will be on a Human Geography issue (Contrasts in the Nottingham urban area)

Key Stage 3


Year 7
Students look at what it means to be part of Bluecoat Wollaton Academy and explore the Christian ethos and mission of our school, before examining different approaches to the Bible, to support students receiving their Braithwaite Bible on Founders Day. In the Spring term we study the life and person of Jesus Christ, using artwork as a point for reflection and discussion. In the final term, we explore the Sikh faith before studying inspirational people of faith such as Gandhi, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Malala Yousafzai and considering how they have used their faith to inspire others and bring about social justice


Year 8

In Year 8 we begin by debating arguments philosophers have developed to attempt to prove the existence of God as well as reasons for non-belief in a unit on Philosophy. In Spring term, we learn about the person of Muhammad and key Muslim beliefs, encouraging open dialogue to address misconceptions about this world faith. Then, as part of our Christian Ethos, we take part in a project called “Spirited Arts” in which students all over the UK explore a given theme and create personal art work as part of a National Competition. The focus of the Summer term is on Morality and Ethics, learning about ethical theories before applying them to issues of justice and equality.


Throughout both years students deepen their knowledge of religion and philosophical and ethical issues as well as developing key skills, such as analysis and evaluation, preparing them for a GCSE in RS.


Useful Links:




Key Stage 4


GCSE (Exam Board: Edexcel B)

Paper 1B Religion and Ethics: Christianity: (1hour 45 mins 50%)

  • Belief in God
  • Marriage and Family
  • Living the Christian Life
  • Life and Death


Paper 2C: Religion, Peace and Justice: Islam (1 hour 45 mins 50%)

  • Belief in God
  • Crime and Punishment
  • Living the Muslim Life
  • Peace and Conflict

Physical Education

The PE curriculum not only looks at the physical requirements of students but addresses health and wellbeing aspects that students may face. This combines with the development of lifelong skills that are so important in modern life.

Year 7

Students focus on developing Core physical movements in a wide variety of sports, including; Football, Rugby, Netball, Dance, Basketball, Athletics, Cricket and Rounders as well as others.

Year 8

Students build on their core knowledge and understanding and perform more intricate and complex skills. Complementing the physical side of the subject, students look to develop their cognitive ability and apply tactics to their performance.

Year 9

Whilst continuing to develop physical, thinking and personal skills, students spend more time developing their leadership and organisational abilities. Differing roles such as officiating, managing and planning PE sessions are part of lessons and students are encouraged to develop this at other times during the school week and beyond.

Year 10

Whilst in Year 10 the curriculum is focused on students leading their own learning and showing creativity in their work. Students are given choices around their Sports and encouraged to create strong lifestyle habits.

Year 11

In Year 11, Students continue to refine their skills and aim to master their physical, thinking and Leadership skills whilst showing creative ability and a healthy mindset. Students are given more choice and are expected to take individual responsibility for their wellbeing in preparation for their life after school.

GCSE PE (Exam Board: OCR)

In GCSE PE learners develop theoretical knowledge and understanding of the factors that underpin physical activity and sport and use this knowledge to improve performance. Learners are taught how the physiological and psychological state affects performance in physical activity and sport.

Learners perform effectively in different physical activities by developing skills and techniques and selecting and using tactics, strategies and/or compositional ideas. They develop their ability to analyse and evaluate to improve performance in physical activity and sport.

Course breakdown:

60% Final Exam
Paper 1 (30%) – Applied anatomy & physiology and physical training (1 hour)
Paper 2 (30%) – Socio-cultural influences, Sports psychology and Health, fitness and well-being (1 hour)

40% Practical Coursework
3 sports (2 team sports and 1 individual sport or visa versa)
Evaluating and Analysing Performance (AEP)

Our Computing curriculum is designed to develop both the skills and knowledge in Computer Science and Digital Media which will prepare them for a world where the use of computer technology is fully embodied.  Whether our students want to learn the science behind computers and be able to write algorithms and develop programs, or to design and produce creative digital content for users to see, we aim for them to have an understanding that goes far deeper than the interface that’s in front of them.  

We aim to build up and gradually develop our students’ problem solving skills, in order that they may be able to use computer technology confidently, safely, effectively and efficiently in a range of situations and circumstances. The curriculum content in each year has been carefully designed in order to build on skills carefully and allow students to apply their learning to a range of contexts and using a variety of software.

Key Stage 3

Year 7

Students begin their study of Computing with a transition unit which covers a range of essential Computing skills such as File management, keyboard shortcuts, using Email and Acceptable Use of the Internet. After this they study the unit ‘Understanding Computers’ which covers aspects of Hardware such as input, output and storage devices. Students also learn how data is represented as binary numbers and will link this to their understanding of storage. We then move onto learning about Algorithms and how they are used in control systems. Students learn to write their own algorithms using Flowcharts which requires them to use decomposition and boolean logic in their problem solving. Both essential skills for any Computer Scientist. 

We also teach a range of software skills during Year 7 interleaved with the Theoretical content. Skills such as presentations, research and evaluation are woven throughout each unit. Finally in Year 7 students will study the properties of different Graphics files as well as learn how to create Vector and bitmap graphics using Photoshop and Serif Drawplus.


Year 8

Students continue their study of Computing in year 8 by creating a game using Scratch. This introduces the idea of sequence, selection and iteration within algorithms, all used within their game. It enables them to develop their problem solving skills and also to embed some of the graphics skills they learnt in Year 7.

After this they will learn Python which is a high level programming language. They will apply their knowledge of variables, and the three programming constructs in a text based language to develop their computational thinking skills much further. They conclude by creating their own Chatbot program which accepts input from a user and provides much scope for higher level thinking and extending their ideas and understanding of programming. 

Students then move onto using graphics packages to create a digital advertising campaign for their Chatbot. Their multimedia skills will be developed in a range of applications including vector design software and Photoshop. They will consider the audience and purpose when designing their products.

Finally in Year 8 students will complete the unit ‘Cyber Crime and Security’ where they will learn about a range of Legislation relevant to Computer Science, as well as security threats to data such as Malware and Phishing. They will learn a number of methods to keep computer networks and data safe, as well as their own personal data.

Year 9


During Year 9 Students studying Computer Science will continue to learn Python and lessons will involve some programming every week in order to develop and retain knowledge of the language. They will also develop their knowledge of writing pseudocode and understanding more complex algorithms. 

Alongside developing their programming skills they will study a range of theory topics in Year 9. They begin with how data is represented by computer systems. This builds on their knowledge of binary numbers, but now they will go further by looking at how characters, images and sound are also represented.

After this they study how primary memory works, including the purpose of ROM and RAM. They then move onto secondary memory and the different types of storage devices along with their properties. The final theory topic they study is Wired and Wireless Networks where they learn about how data is transferred.


BTEC Level 2 First in Creative and Digital Media Production (Exam Board: Edexcel)

The course will help you take your first steps towards a career in the digital industry. You’ll learn essential skills such as planning and pitching a digital media product, digital publishing and producing digital video. Students will learn how to take an idea from initial formation through focus groups, pitches, research and planning to final production. All the skills learn are highly transferable such as chairing team meetings and leading presentations as well as organisational skill and time management.

This is a largely practical course where all units of work teach students real world skills that will transfer straight into the media Industry. We use industry standard equipment and software such as green screens, Adobe Premiere Pro, InDesign and Photoshop. Throughout the course students will produce work which can be used as part of a portfolio for further studies or employment.

The course has 4 units:

Examined Unit 25%

  • Digital Media Sectors and Audiences

Coursework Units 75%

  • Planning and Pitching a Digital Media Product
  • Digital Moving Image Production
  • Digital Audio Production

Useful Links

Pearson Specification
BTEC Creative Media Blogspot

Key Stage 3

Year 7

Year Seven students are given opportunities to develop their skills by exploring a wide range of media and techniques. They will study three separate projects over the course of the year, including basic drawing techniques, colour theory, mixing with coloured pencil and water colour, and manipulating wire to create 3D sculptures.

Year 8

Year Eight students will refine their skills in observational drawing, and add more skills to their repertoire over the course of three separate projects. This includes exploring the work of other artists and cultures to develop ideas towards personal outcomes. These projects act as a foundation to build upon for GCSE Art.

KS4 GCSE Art and Design (Exam Board OCR)

Year 9 is a foundation year for preparing students for working at GCSE standards. Students will become confident working with a wide range of media, and learn how to create a sustained project, with the potential to work with pencils, paints, printing methods, 3D media, textiles, photomontage, and mixed media.

During Year 10 and 11 they will develop competence with increasing independence in refining and developing ideas. The course comprises of:

Coursework portfolio (worth 60% of the overall mark)
Students will develop a body of work in response to their chosen starting point. This will include artist research, analysis, drawings, experimentation with media, and a final outcome.

OCR Set Task (worth 40% of the overall mark)
Students are given ten weeks to research, experiment and explore one of the starting points provided by OCR. The final outcome will be produced over a ten hour controlled assessment period.

Key Stage 3

Year 7

Pupils will begin their dramatic studies learning the basic necessary dramatic skills such as freeze frames, thought-tracking, ensemble and chorus work. The range of styles, texts and performance work that pupils will engage with and develop is a wide ranging and cohesive experience. Pupils will range in text from Shakespeare to Alice in Wonderland to Ancient Greek Theatre.

Year 8

In Year 8, pupils further develop their drama skills, by focussing on more specific skills, the use of voice and how to create tension within performance. In addition, pupils look at real life scenarios, such as the crisis in Syria and refugees, and introducing forum theatre. Finally we explore further genres of drama and how these are presented on stage, for example Musical Theatre, Science Fiction and Horror.

The Key Stage 3 drama experience develops pupils skills and gives them a wide ranging and inclusive theatre experience that will prepare them for Key Stage 4.

Key Stage 4

Pupils start to refine their dramatic skills learned in key stage 3 and apply higher level thinking, approaching performances from the perspective of not only an actor but as a designer and a director. Pupils will expand their drama vocabulary, learning about proxemics and semiotics within performance. Pupils will also look extensively at a range of styles and genre including Commedia Dell’Arte and Trestle Mask Theatre. Pupils will also have the opportunity to perform to a public audience for the first time. Devising opportunities and group work will be apparent, giving pupils the chance to develop group work and communication skills whilst working towards a common goal. Text analysis will be further developed, overlapping with a key English GCSE text An Inspector Calls in preparation for a written exam.

Key Stage 3

Year 7

Students begin their Bluecoat musical journey with an understanding of musical literacy and the elements of music. The skills of performance, composition and musical listening are embedded through practical music-making, using real instruments such as ukuleles, djembe drums and keyboards within the classroom. Projects involve timbre, scales, harmony and structure.

Year 8

Students start the year by learning about film music techniques. They then expand their cultural awareness by studying aspects of world music, including Chinese music and African drumming. Performance skills are developed by working together to produce Blues performances. Other projects include hooks and riffs, music for special occasions and MOBO.

Key Stage 4

Students who opt to further their studies in Music develop their musical performance, composition and listening skills. The course is divided into these 3 sections but the learning of these is interlinked though a variety of areas of study. Students discover the history of music through the study of the concerto through time. They also discover the use of rhythm around the world, discovering the music of India, South America, Africa and the East Mediterranean. Students also cover music for film, including video game music, and conventions of popular music. Music students also learn about their instrument and complete a project including a performance based around this.

Key Stage 3

In years 7 and 8 students are taught the fundamentals of designing, manufacturing and evaluating. This is done through the four areas of Design and Technology that the students will study. These areas are Resistant Materials, Food, Graphics and Textiles with each area contributing its own specific skill set. Students are encouraged to be creative and innovative as well as being able to solve problems through both design and practical activities.

Key Stage 4

At KS4 students are encouraged to further develop their knowledge and skills of Design and Technology in one of these areas:

  • Textiles
  • Food Preparation and Nutrition
  • Design and Technology

These will provide the students with the foundations to continue further onto a career in the creative, manufacturing, construction and design industries. Students will study theoretical content of the course as well as developing their skills in designing and manufacturing using a variety of specialist tools, machines and equipment in the coursework element of each course. Students are encouraged to be innovative when problem solving to ensure that they design and make products that showcase their creativity.

Key Stage 5

What will be studied?

The two-year National Diploma is worth the equivalent of two A Levels. In total, 10 units are studied exploring the skills and techniques, personal attributes and attitudes essential for successful performance in working life and vocationally-recognised experience in the media sectors.

Units include:

  • Digital Media Skills
  • Responding to a Commission
  • Media Enterprise
  • Website Production
  • Interviewing Techniques
  • Writing Copy
  • Image Manipulation Technique
  • 2D Digital Graphics
  • Page Layout and Design for Digital Media

How will I be assessed?

Two units are externally assessed: Digital Media Skills and Responding to a Commission. These are tasks set and marked externally within a vocational context. Students are issued the task and given a preparatory period before completing it independently under supervised conditions. All other units are internally set, assessed and verified and then externally sampled.

To support and contextualise all units, students take part in a number of vocationally relevant off-site trips and seminars/ workshops from visiting professional practitioners and are encouraged to engineer their work experience placement to enhance their experience in this industry.

What next?

Digital Publishing incorporates a large proportion of the creative media industry, including web design and publishing, digital graphics and design for digital publications e.g. interactive e-magazines. It is particularly valuable in careers in media production, writing copy and proof reading/editing, illustration, graphic design, web design, digital journalism, marketing, advertising, animation, photography, media production management and many more. In a fast-paced and visually stimulating world where digital communication, the internet and social media are key to mass-marketing and international exposure, employers are always keen to employ people with a creative outlook and skills. This course is a well-respected and rigorously assessed course that offers a clear progression route into media-based creative courses at college and universities around the country.

GCSE Business Studies (Exam Board: Edexcel)

This qualification reflects the demands of a truly modern and evolving business environment and enables students to develop as commercially minded and enterprising individuals.

Students are assessed by two externally-examined papers. Students will study:

  • Theme 1: Investigating small business – topics in this section will include business revenue, costs and profits; the marketing mix; business stakeholders and the impact of technology.
  • Theme 2: Building a business – topics in this section will include methods of business growth, international trade and business ethics.

Each written examination is 1 hour and 30 minutes and worth 50% of the qualification.

Useful Links


GCSE Sociology

Sociology at Bluecoat Wollaton Academy enables students to gain an in-depth knowledge and understanding of society, and relevant and current issues through the study of families, education, crime and deviance and social stratification.

  • Sociology students start the course learning about basic terms such as norms and values, and ideas surrounding the nature vs nurture debate. Students then start to apply theory to their new knowledge, such as feminism and functionalism, and discus the contrasting views on society.
  • The family topic looks at the idea of family diversity; why some families are more common in the UK now and others are less common. We study divorce and marriage rates and whether roles have changed in the household over the past 70 years.
  • In education, we consider how factors such as class and gender affect achievement, and question to what extent we live in a meritocracy.
  • In the crime and deviance topic we consider the ‘hidden figure of crime’ and discuss reasons why some crimes are not recorded, detected or reported. We also look at who commits the most crime and why, and apply research and theory to these ideas.
  • In social stratification we look at how factors such as class, age, gender, ethnicity, disability and sexuality have an effect on our life chances and opportunities.


Students will also develop their analytical, evaluative and communication skills by comparing and debating different sociological perspectives on a variety of social issues. Students study a variety of different sociological theories, such as Marxism, feminism, functionalism, postmodernism and interactionism.  In each topic students are given the chance to discuss and debate each theory, and start to understand which viewpoint(s) they may take on themselves.

Students will learn how to create their own research projects, through sociological research.  They will analyse different sociological methods and make judgments on the most appropriate method for different research topics.  By the end of Year 11, students will be able to construct reasoned arguments, making supported judgements and drawing clear conclusions.

Level 2 Award in Child Development and Care

This qualification provides the opportunity to gain a vocational qualification that gives a basic introduction to the child care sector. It includes the knowledge and understanding of child development and well-being necessary for working with children in a variety of settings. It is aimed at a range of learners who wish to be introduced to childcare and development for children aged 0-5 years.

Students will study a variety of topics and issues including-

  • Safeguarding the welfare of children and young people.
  • Signs and symptoms of childhood illness
  • Parenting and healthy lifestyles.
  • Supporting children and a young person’s development.
  • Exploring diversity and inclusive practice.
  • How to support children through periods of transition and change.
  • Supporting children’s play and learning.

Assessment is via;-

  • Course work;-Two internally assessed units of study to include a variety of written tasks and activities/role plays/creative academic posters etc.
  • Examination;-Externally assessed Synoptic Multiple Choice Question Paper.

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Bluecoat Wollaton Academy
Sutton Passeys Crescent
Wollaton Park

E-mail: office@bluecoatwollaton.co.uk
Tel: 0115 900 7210

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