With OFSTED’s renewed focus on the curriculum many schools are re-examining the quality of their Ks3 curriculum, mostly written without knowledge of what GCSE course would follow. Few schools have gone back and re-written their 2014 KS3 courses in the light of their GCSE choices, though mist have made minor changes. Now that the new GCSEs and A levels have bedded down , it might be a good time to revisit the KS3 schemes of work first drafted nearly 5 years ago. I, myself, looked again at the Ks3 curriculum models that Michael Madison offered for discussion.
What struck me most about these schemes was not so much their variety or indeed their idiosyncratic choices, was the fact that the quaerstions set in Y9 didn’t seem any more challenging than those for Y7. Clearly the context was different and the objectives may well have been too ( I couldn’t tell from the outline given), but the questions weren’t intrinsically any more complicated or challenging. I think it is a relatively quick fix to go back through the questions and sharpen them to show progression in the demands being made. If you set a more challenging question then more challenging learning objectives activities and resources tend to flow. Try it!