Science Year 7

Departmental Curriculum

Year 7

The science course in Year 7 is designed so pupils explore the science curriculum in an investigative way. We try to engage pupils to develop an interest and enthusiasm for Science. Pupils are afforded the opportunity to do as much relevant practical work as possible to help develop their hypothesising, planning, risk assessment skills and observational skills. Pupils will be taught how to record their observations and handle the data they collect in their lessons. Pupils will be able to use scientific knowledge to form conclusions. Pupils are also encouraged to evaluate their own practical work and look for ways to improve it.

Lessons are taught as topics. In y7 pupils will study:

Investigating Science

Learning the skills to handle apparatus, work safely and gather useful results

Cells and Living Things

Cells as the basic unit of living organisms,

The functions of the cell wall, cell membrane, cytoplasm, nucleus, vacuole, mitochondria and chloroplasts.

Similarities and differences between plant and animal cells

How substances move in and out of cells

How some unicellular organisms are adapted to survive

The hierarchical organisation of multicellular organisms: from cells to tissues to organs to systems to organisms which carry out life processes

Structures or features of cells that allow them to do specific jobs.

The skeletal and muscular systems:

 The structure and functions of the human skeleton, to include support, protection, movement and making blood cells

Biomechanics –how the skeleton and muscles work together, including the measurement of force exerted by different muscles

The function of muscles and how they work together


All matter is made of particles.

The properties of the different states of matter (solid, liquid and gas) in terms of the particle model, including gas pressure

Changes of state in terms of the particle model.


Classify materials into solid, liquids and gases, justifying decisions.

Explaining pressure in terms of particles.

The effect of energy changes on changes of state (qualitative) conservation of material and of mass, and reversibility, in melting, freezing, evaporation, sublimation, condensation, dissolving

Similarities and differences, including density, between solids, liquids and gases

Brownian motion in gases,

the differences in arrangements, in motion and in closeness of particles explaining changes of state, shape and density, the anomaly of ice-water transition

Atoms and molecules as particles.

Acids and Alkalis

Know that pH gives us a measure of whether something is an acid or alkali.

Indicators help to show if something is an acid or alkali

Practical examples of the uses of acids and alkalis

Reactions of acids with metals produce a salt plus hydrogen

Reactions of acids with alkalis produce a salt plus water


Identify energy types and transfers.

Energy cannot be created or destroyed, it is transferred from one for to another.

How energy in matter changes with temperature in motion and spacing of particles

How internal energy is stored in materials.

Energy: simple machines give bigger force but at the expense of smaller movement (and vice versa): product of force and displacement is unchanged. Identify and explain energy transfers

Explain how fossil fuels were formed

 Explain how electricity is generated using fossil fuels

Advantages and disadvantages of using renewable and non renewable energy sources to generate electricity.

Explain how heat transfers through solids, liquids and gases by conduction, convection and radiation.

Describe how insulation can be used to stop heat from escaping from the home.

Atoms, elements and Compounds

What the Dalton model of an atom looks like

The difference between atoms, elements and compounds

Begin to recognise and use symbols and formulae for elements and compounds

Understand that mass is conserved in physical and chemical changes



Our sun as a star, other stars in our galaxy, other galaxies

How the seasons are affected by the Earth’s tilt

How day length varies at different times of year, in different hemispheres

What is a light year as a unit of astronomical distance?

Gravity force, weight = mass x gravitational field strength (g),

On earth g=10 N/kg,  but it is different on other planets and stars;

gravity forces between earth and moon, and between earth and sun


How organisms affect, and are affected by, their environment, including the accumulation (build up) of toxic materials.

The role of variation in enabling living things to survive in the same ecosystem

The interdependence of organisms in an ecosystem, including food webs and insect pollinated crops as examples

Explain why it is important to conserve endangered species

Describe and explain the flow of energy in a food chain

Explain the difference between a producer and a consumer

Explain the potential effects of invasive species on a habitat

Describe the effects of bioaccumulation on a habitat


Magnetic poles: attraction and repulsion

• showing magnetic fields by plotting with compass, representation by field lines

• Earth’s magnetism, using a compass and navigation

• The magnetic effect of a current, electromagnets, D.C. Motors (principles only)

Pure and Impure Substances

• understand what a pure substance is

•mixtures, including dissolving

• diffusion in terms of the particle model

• the identification of pure substances.

Distinguish between pure and impure substances

Simple techniques for separating mixtures: filtration, evaporation, distillation and chromatography


Forces as pushes and pulls, when two objects interact

Using force arrows in diagrams, adding forces in one dimension, balanced and unbalanced forces

 Moment as the turning effect of a force

 Forces: associated with deforming objects, stretching and squashing – springs.

Forces measured in newtons

 Forces: associated with rubbing and friction between surfaces, with pushing things out of the way, resistance to motion of air and water.

Work done and energy changes on deformation

Examples of non-contact forces: gravity forces acting at a distance on Earth and in space, forces between magnets and forces due to static electricity.

Balanced forces:

Opposing forces and equilibrium: weight held by a stretched spring or supported on a compressed surface


Reproduction in plants, including flower structure, wind and insect pollination, fertilisation, seed and fruit formation and dispersal.

Describe the process of plant reproduction

Investigate seed dispersal

Explain why there is a ‘pollination crisis’


Reproduction in humans (as an example of a mammal), gestation and birth

Describe the physical changes that happen in males and females during puberty

Name and label the parts of the male and female reproductive systems and explain their function

Explain how egg cells are fertilised by sperm cells and the role of the menstrual cycle

Describe the effects of drugs and alcohol on an unborn child