Category: GCSE

Science Stopwatch..

If you need a quick science stopwatch for an experiement or a projector…

Permanent link to this article: https://www.animatedscience.co.uk/2011/science-stopwatch

A Selection of Animal Videos…

Just click on the pictures of the animals to see a video….

Animals
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Maldivian Snail

This clip was taken on Kurumba Island Beach in the Maldives 2004. It shows the mollusc in action on the sand. (no sound)

Patagonian Cavy

This clip was taken at Twycross Zoo in Leicestershire. It is of a Patagonian Cavy up close. (no sound)

Sheep

This clip was taken at Caulk Abbey in the East Midlands and features many sheep in a field. (no sound)

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White Faced Marmoset

This clip was taken at Twycross Zoo in Leicestershire. It is of a White Faced Marmoset in a small enclosure. (no sound)

Pelican

This clip was taken at Twycross Zoo in Leicestershire. It is of a Pelican sitting at the side of a lake. (no sound)

Common Marmoset

This clip was taken at Twycross Zoo in Leicestershire. It is of a Common Marmoset in a small enclosure. (no sound)

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Giraffe

This clip was taken at Twycross Zoo in Leicestershire. It is of a Giraffe indoors and outdoors licking a metal bar of its cage. (no sound)

Sting Ray

This clip was taken on Kurumba Island Beach in the Maldives 2004. It shows a baby sting ray hiding from larger fish in the bay. (no sound)

Flamingo

This clip was taken at Twycross Zoo in Leicestershire. It shows the bird and focuses on they eye as it blinks, quite simply stunning. (no sound)

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Golden Lion Tamarin

This clip was taken at Twycross Zoo in Leicestershire. It is of a Golden Lion Tamarin in a small enclosure. (no sound)

Maldivian Lobster

This clip was taken in the Maldives. It shows a selection of local shellfish and then some lobsters in a tank. (no sound)

Sea Lion

This clip was taken at Twycross Zoo in Leicestershire. It shows the common sea lion swimming and the animal close up. (no sound)

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Indian Elephant

This clip was taken at Twycross Zoo in Leicestershire. It is of an indian elephant up close. (no sound)

 

Permanent link to this article: https://www.animatedscience.co.uk/2011/a-selection-of-animal-videos

Modeling Electricity

Hi,

Here are the resources from a recent lesson I taught on modelling electricity. It is really for top set Y9 moving to GCSE level but all abilities at a higher age would find it of use.

The lesson takes the form of a PowerPoint with a cut and stick for pupils in group work. The pupils look at the different models with colour images (needs to print in colour) and then assess if they have evaluated their model. Each model includes images and statements so they can actually build a large model on A2 paper and present.

 There are also translations of the instructions for other language speakers. I translated to Chinese, Russian, Latvian, French, Hindi, Greek and Spanish with Google Translator so see what you think.

I would say that this is my best ever lesson (in 10 years) of teaching electricity models, they really got it!

Modeling Electricity Main Resource (PPT)

Modeling Electricity Lesson Plan and Worksheet (Word)

Chinese version Pupil worksheet (Word)

Translated Instructions (PPT)

AF1-5 Assessment criteria (Word)

Permanent link to this article: https://www.animatedscience.co.uk/modeling-electricity

GCSE Science A Journey!

 I was thinking recently about the changes we have seen to GCSE science in the past 10 years. I cannot comment before this but for the past 10 years I have taught AQA Core Science and Additional Science for Y11. Also before this the AQA double award which was split into Y10/Y11 so you had two grades.

The first thing that amazed me is when the “How Science Works” agenda came into play AQA changed the science content by mixing half of Y10 with half of Y11 then removing some content and making it the “Triple” part so I would say that pupils after the changes covered less than before unless they did triple science.

This was not the worst part. Take for example Y10 Electricity pupils would have to do a two stage calculation for working out the energy loss in a transformer in the multichoice exam. It was very difficult to get 36/36 in the exam. However, now most of the maths has come out of the exams and they are much easier for pupils (who can read) to access.  What has changed is that there are now a lot of trick questions based more in English tricks than science tricks.

It was very interesting that for the past few years I keep raising the issue within science forums and nobody wanted to admit that things had got easier. However as more changes came in for 2010 Y9 students….

The exams watchdog, Ofqual, said the new papers – designed to address concerns that science exams had become too easy – had “not gone far enough”.

Last year Ofqual said science GCSEs taken in 2007 and 2008 had contained too many multiple choice papers and had failed to challenge the brightest.

Improvements have already been made to this year’s paper, Ofqual said.

Ofqual previously ordered an overhaul of GCSE science qualifications and immediate action was taken to toughen them up for students sitting them last year and this year.

Now the watchdog says the new-look qualifications, due to be introduced in autumn 2011, have been sent back to the exam boards for more work.

A spokesman for the exam board AQA said: “We are addressing the issues that Ofqual has raised, and will be re-submitting our specifications for accreditation, whilst maintaining the innovations that teachers and subject communities have

In view of the issues that Science is having I would appeal to all students and teachers to look for a guide from history. Just thumb though the exams and the textbooks from 20 years ago for Physics, Chemistry and Biology. You will see the standards and what is expected. The gap between GCSE and AS is getting wider and you will need to make sure that if for example you wish to study AS Physics you keep to the old standards. Mathematics is constantly removed from the subject to “make is more accessible” to pupils who cannot access maths as really the subject is dying as it is so hard compared to some others. But in reality Mathematics is the language of Physics and was invented by Physicists trying to understand the world around them. If you cannot express things mathematically Physics simply becomes a talking shop and more like philosophy.

Also why when you look through these is books is so much taken out of the modern AS/A2 exams. I am now teaching about 2/3 of what I did for my A-level 15 years ago so why has it been dropped? Don’t we use op amps, rectifying circuits and transistors in our circuits any more?  Well of course we do but now they are in the 1st year of a Physics or Electronics degree? Draw your own conclusions and remember you can learn more than the exam board wants and better than the rest. Learning about science is not dictated by the exam board and we can do much more than them.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.animatedscience.co.uk/2011/gcse-science-a-journey

KS4 Covalent Bonding

This set of animations looks at Covalent Bonding for a series of popular structures for GCSE Chemistry. They are basic but functional….

Chemistry Menu

Permanent link to this article: https://www.animatedscience.co.uk/ks4-covalent-bonding

KS3/KS4 Oil and Rocks

Here are my old KS4 Earth Sciences resources. They were made when I worked at Ashfield School quite some time ago now. They are basic but useful for KS4…..

This link gives two animations with worksheets for KS3 Rocks for all the basics with nice examples for each category: Sedimentary, Igneous, Metamorphic and the Rock Cycle.

ks3-rocks

Permanent link to this article: https://www.animatedscience.co.uk/ks4-earth-sciences

The Problem with Teaching Physics in modern times….

I am starting to worry about how we teach Physics to the pupils of today. It seems increasingly obvious that we teach more and more about things that are really unimportant to science and less about the fundamentals.

For example we spent a lot of time on the new HSW curriculum on identifying the type of a variable i.e. categorical, continuous and similar. This allows the pupils to decide which graph type to draw in an ISA exam for AQA and similar boards. However, really is that a skill that they need in their everyday lives or society needs for scientists of the future?

Now try some of these video cartoon clips https://www.animatedscience.co.uk/flv/ from KOCE (also see list on that page).

When you start to think about it, why is school Physics not split like this for all pupils into five main sections. Then just look at the topics they are such simple fundamental things which everyone should know about for their everyday lives. Also the right way to teach for pupils who go onto to Uni and further!

How many pupils really know about how a wheel works or  simple lever, possibly mans greatest inventions. However, somehow written out by the QCA from KS3 and KS4. On the select few who take A-Level Physics are supposed to learn about these basic things of life?

Even more interestingly to really see if school science has failed is ask these question to a pupil. “What do stars do”. They will all answer “emit light”. Then you refine it…. “apart from emit light” which is obviously a secondary thing. Then 99% will not know and neither will most adults either. So in fact it seems the people who write the GCSE Physics for the nation as the missed it out of all the specs.

Stars in fact create all the elements in the Universe and of course those which make up our bodies. So what do we teach about stars…. well we teach about life and death cycles but forget the major important thing.

So what am I saying? Well if you can please slip into your teaching some of the really important things which will still give us pupils who can think for themselves and be creative. Also make sure that every pupil who goes through your hands regardless of if the QCA tells you to teach it or not understands the idea of a lever!

Permanent link to this article: https://www.animatedscience.co.uk/2010/the-problem-with-teaching-physics-in-modern-times

Structure of a Leaf KS4/5 Biology

Have some fun label the diagram….

Permanent link to this article: https://www.animatedscience.co.uk/2010/structure-of-a-leaf-ks45-biology

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