Thornhill College has a very strong tradition of Science teaching which continues from KS3 into A-level.
Biology, Chemistry and Physics are all popular A-level courses and we have recently extended our provision with the introduction of GCSE Astronomy and A-level Applied Science.
At KS3, GCSE and A-level, our pupils achieve a high level of success and our A-level pupils graduate to a wide range of science-based courses at the top universities in Ireland and Britain.
Key Stage 3 Science
The Key Stage 3 Science curriculum is an integrated Science course which includes elements of Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Investigative Science and ICT.
Science is a key part of the curriculum in Years 8, 9 and 10. Our Key Stage 3 Science programmes are designed for our pupils:
- to have a well-informed awareness of the role and importance of science in everyday life;
- to develop an appreciation of the beauty and fascination of the world around them;
- to develop methodical and analytical approaches to problem solving
- to develop the ability to investigate new situations and ask appropriate questions
- to develop practical skills, including the ability to plan and carry out investigations.
Year 10 Science Fair
In the summer term of Year 10 the pupils spend several weeks working on group projects. The work is then exhibited as part of the Annual Science Fair which takes place at the end of June.
Science Fair projects give the pupils an opportunity to develop investigative and group work skills in a wide range of scientific contexts.
Projects are exhibited at the Science Fair Prize Day. Pupils are interviewed and projects are judged by a team of experts drawn from different scientific and industrial organisations.The Judging Day is rounded off in style with rocket launches supervised by Mr Ash McFadden of Greencastle Planetarium.
The Year 8 Science Club
The Year 8 Science Club meets every week after school. It provides the pupils with opportunities to further enhance their scientific experience and try out some things that are not on the syllabus.
We create a stimulating environment which engages the pupils using examples which they can apply to the real world.
We have received some really positive feedback from our regular science club members:
“It is really good fun! The activities are all different. For example dissecting a salmon was great, and it has helped me enjoy science more”.
“It’s definitely interesting and the teachers put science in a fun way. I understand more in class as a result. Making fireworks and testing them outdoors was amazing!”.
Examples of Science Club activities include:
- Erupting volcanoes
- Turning copper into gold,
- Making fireworks,
- Dissecting fish,
- Slime making
Members of the Science Club also get the chance to take part in the following schemes:
- The Salters Festival of Chemistry,
- DCU All Ireland Crystal Growing Competition,
- Bombardier Flight Experience
STEM subjects are valuable not only because they can lead to exciting, rewarding career options, but also because they enable individuals to be active citizens in an increasingly technological society.
Click here to read more about our STEM programme.