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Claremont High School Academy


Head of Department: Ms S Patel

Head of Chemistry: Ms B Chaudhry

The Science faculty consists of 18 experienced teachers, many with science related masters degrees and PhDs. All teachers teach Biology, Chemistry and Physics at Key Stage 3 and their science speciality at Key Stage 4 and 5.

The department has 17 well equipped laboratories that are purpose built for theory and practical work. In addition, we have a brilliant technician team who are fantastic at supporting pupils and staff with all practical requirements.

The science teachers pride themselves in ensuring high quality teaching and learning takes place in line with the curriculum and whole school vision and values. Teachers build outstanding relationships with pupils and are always willing to give up their time outside of lessons to help pupils progress.

 Curriculum Intent

Chemistry is the study of the building blocks of our world. It is at the centre of everything you can see, smell, touch and taste. Chemistry underpins understanding and progress in the world around us and enriches our quality of life in numerous ways by providing new solutions to problems in health, materials, energy usage and the environment. At Claremont, our aim is to enable students to develop a love for Chemistry and to understand the world around them through Chemistry. We aim to give pupils the confidence to learn, question, and challenge scientific enquires, to become well rounded scientifically literate individuals who make positive contributions to society adding to their science capital. We also aim to provide pupils with practical experience and opportunities outside the curriculum too.

Key Stage 3

Please visit our Key Stage 3 and Combined Science page.

Key Stage 4

At Key Stage 4 pupils will build on knowledge and skills from Key Stage 3. Topics taught are in line with the specification and provide an excellent foundation for those wanting to study Chemistry at A Level. Throughout Year 10 and 11, core concepts will be elicited through retrieval and built upon in different topics. Concepts are also underpinned by practical and mathematical skills. Pupils experience working in a laboratory and pay close attention to health and safety. They have opportunities to carry out investigations, evaluate data, carry out calculations and draw conclusions based on scientific evidence.

The skills we expect our pupils to gain are a knowledge of topic specific content, exam technique, extended writing, core laboratory practical skills, collaboration, solving mathematical problems in chemistry and the ability to make cross-curricular links. This will help students become well rounded individuals with knowledge and understanding that are transferable to everyday life.

Course and Exam information:

  • The exam board we follow is Pearson Edexcel GCSE (9-1) in Chemistry
  • All assessment at GCSE is by examination at the end of  Year 11
  • There is no coursework but there are 9 topics and 8 compulsory Chemistry core practicals that may be assessed in the written exams
  • Students sit two exam papers at the end of  Year 11
  • Paper 1 assesses Topics 1-5 and Paper 2 assesses Topics 1 and 6-9
  • Exams are 1 hour 45 minutes and worth 100 marks each
  • GCSEs are awarded under the 9-1 grading system
  • Higher tier (grades 4-9) and Foundation tier (grades 1-5) are available


Content from topic 1 and 2 are taught in year 9 as it overlaps with the KS3 curriculum. Content from these topics are embedded throughout the course.

Topics 1-5 are taught in Year 10 and topics 6-9 are taught in Year 11.

During year 10 topics 1-5 are taught and in Year 11 topics 6-9.

At the end of each topic pupils sit an end of topic assessment.

At the end of  Year 10 there is an end of year exam.

During Year 11 there are two mock exam sessions.

Links to each topic checklist:

The nine chemistry topics have been rearranged into subtopics to allow appropriate sequencing of the curriculum. The names of the topics are listed below. The names of the subtopics and order in which they are taught, along with links to checklists, are found in the table underneath.

Topic 1 – Key concepts in chemistry

Topic 2 – States of matter and mixtures

Topic 3 – Chemical changes

Topic 4 – Extracting metals and equilibria

Topic 5 – Separate chemistry 1

Topic 6 – Groups in the periodic table

Topic 7 – Rates of reaction and energy changes

Topic 8 – Fuels and Earth science

Topic 9 – Separate chemistry 2



Topic 2 

States of Matter & Methods of separating and purifying substances

Topic 1 

Atomic Structure & The Periodic Table

Topic 1 

Ionic Bonding

Topic 1 

Covalent Bonding & Types of Substances

Topic 1 + Topic 5 

Calculations Involving Masses & Quantitative Analysis Part 1

Topic 3 + Topic 5 

Acids and Alkalis & Quantitative Analysis Part 2

Topic 3 

Electrolytic Processes

Topic 4 + Topic 5 

Obtaining and Using Metals, Transition Metals & Alloys and Corrosion

Topic 7 

Rates of Reaction & Heat Energy Changes in Chemical Reactions 

Topic 4 + Topic 5 

Reversible Reactions and Equilibria, Dynamic Equilibria & Chemical and Fuel Cells 

Topic 6 

 Groups in the Periodic Table 

Topic 8 


Topic 8 

Earth and Atmospheric Science

Topic 9 

Hydrocarbons, Alcohols and Carboxylic acids & Polymers 

Topic 9 

Qualitative Analysis: Test for Ions & Bulk and Surface Properties of Matter including Nanoparticles 

The full specification for the Edexcel GCSE Chemistry can be found here:

GCSE Chemistry Specification


There are various resources available to support pupils:

  • Pearson Active Learn - a digital learning environment that provides students with an online version of the textbooks and access to interactive online tasks (pupils should have their own log in to access this)
  • Revision guides and workbooks – provided to pupils
  • ScienceFocus - interactive version of all the core practicals learnt at GCSE (found on Teams)
  • Teachers - students can come and see their teacher outside of lesson time with any queries or questions. 
  • Websites – “BBC Bitesize” and “Physics and Maths tutor”

Key Stage 5

At KS5 the Chemistry Department aim to build on pupil’s science capital and passion for Chemistry, their chosen A Level subject. Teaching is made relevant to everyday life and further transferable skills are developed through practical work. We also encourage pupils to engage with Chemistry related media including magazines, books, news, articles, societies (e.g RSC) which will broaden their depth of knowledge and understanding. 

With these aims we hope our pupils become independent learnings ready to succeed in a science related discipline at university or apprenticeship and to make informed decisions about career choices and contributions to the society and future.

The exam board is Pearson Edexcel A Level in Chemistry.

All assessment at A Level is by examination at the end of Year 13. There are three exam papers sat at the end of year 13.

There is no coursework, but pupils must carry out a minimum of 12 core practicals that may be assessed in the written exams.

For both paper 1 and paper 2:

  • Each paper is 30% of the total qualification
  • Assessment is 1 hour 45 minutes
  • The paper consists of 90 marks
  • The paper may include multiple-choice, short open, open-response, calculations and extended writing questions
  • The paper will include questions that target mathematics at Level 2 or above

For paper 3:

  • Assessment is 2 hours 30 minutes
  • The paper consists of 120 marks
  • The paper may include short open, open-response, calculations and extended writing questions
  • The paper will include questions that target mathematics at Level 2 or above
  • Some questions will assess conceptual and theoretical understanding of experimental methods 

Overall, a minimum of 20% of the marks across the three papers will be awarded for mathematics at Level 2 or above

Topics in Year 10 and 11:

Taught in

Topic number

Topic Name

Year 12


Atomic Structure and the Periodic Table

Year 12


Bonding and Structure

Year 12


Redox I

Year 12


Inorganic Chemistry and the Periodic Table

Year 12


Formulae, Equations and Amounts of Substance

Year 12


Organic Chemistry I

Year 12


Modern Analytical Techniques I

Year 12


Energetics I

Year 12


Kinetics I

Year 12


Equilibrium I

Year 13


Equilibrium II

Year 13


Acid-base Equilibria

Year 13


Energetics II

Year 13


Redox II

Year 13


Transition Metals

Year 13


Kinetics II

Year 13


Organic Chemistry II

Year 13


Organic Chemistry III

Year 13


Modern Analytical Techniques II


Throughout the key stages teachers organise various opportunities for pupils within school. This includes our co-curricular clubs; lego club, science club and stemettes, along with guest speakers and workshops such as robotics, medical diagnostics challenge day and Moorfield Eye Hospital workshop with volunteering opportunities.

Pupils are also encouraged to enter UK-wide competitions such as the Biology Challenge and Chemistry Challenge to compete for Bronze, Silver or Gold awards.

In addition to this, pupils have the opportunity to attend external workshops and excursions. These have included trips to the Science Museum, RAF museum, various STEM days and STEM lectures at UCL.

Next Steps

Every year, many of our students choose undergraduate courses related directly to Chemistry.

Courses at Higher Education and Careers related to the Chemistry:

  • Pharmaceuticals – developing and testing medicines.
  • Food technology – creating foods and food additives.
  • Manufacturing – developing and producing all types of materials.
  • Petrochemicals – oil, gas and their products.
  • Journalism and publishing – scientific books and journals, the popular press, textbooks and general science books.
  • Forensics – examining evidence after a crime.
  • Teaching or research – in academia or industry.