Science in Stage 4 (Years 7 and 8) provides an introduction to general scientific concepts programmed around the areas of Earth and Space, and the Physical, Chemical and Biological Worlds as per the new Australian Curriculum. Students are given access to ideas, taught new skills, and encouraged to explore their world through the eyes of a scientist in the hope they will broaden their understanding and develop the critical thinking skills needed in the higher years.
Stage 5 (Years 9 and 10) builds upon the concepts introduced in Stage 4, refines skills, and delves more deeply into the nuances of Science – looking at the larger ideas, the topical and occasionally controversial issues that impact the scientific community, whilst gaining a greater understanding of the interconnectedness and intricacies of higher level concepts in preparation for senior high school.
At San Clemente, we continually aim to provide the students with rich and diverse experiences. The students may avail themselves of opportunities to compete in several competitions, some of which include the University of Newcastle’s Science and Engineering Challenge, the Aurecon sponsored Bridge Building National Competition, The ICAS Science Competition and the International Robocup where students program robots to complete a range of challenges. There are opportunities for a five day Forensics Camp, Science Poetry Prize and much more.
Stage 5 Electives
Marine and Aquaculture Technology
Marine is a project-based, practical subject relating to coastal areas and other water-related environments, as well as water-related enterprises and leisure activities.
Marine Studies aims to provide an opportunity for the future custodians of the marine environment to study it and to appreciate its value. It develops the necessary knowledge and skills to use and protect the marine environments unique ecosystems, whilst at the same time providing an opportunity to instill in students an acceptable ethical code towards the use of the marine environment. Students studying Marine will be enabled to make informed arguments for the maintenance of biodiversity and the sustainable use of marine ecosystems.
By studying Marine students develop advanced computer skills and scientific literacy through experimentation. They increase their capacity to think critically by calling upon a wide range of knowledge, procedures and approaches to analyse issues pertaining to marine environments, in the process developing solutions. Students also increase their collaborative and creative skills by engaging in the group-based activities on offer.
iSTEM was first offered in NSW as an approved Board of Studies elective in 2013. San Clemente was one of the initial seven schools who were keen to take it up. The reason the course was developed was to address the shortfall in students from Australia following career pathways in the STEM fields. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics and is the fastest growing area of employment across the world attracting some of the most handsome salaries.
iSTEM aims to develop students problem solving skills and introduce them to real world applications of Science and Technology. They do this through many projects, working in teams to produce solutions. Projects include building bridges out of newspaper only, or out of Manila folders to hold several kilograms. They will also be developing electric vehicles, wind tunnels and robotically controlled automated systems. The students will have a chance to visit industry to see examples of how engineers solve context based problems. At the end of Year 10, students are expected to produce their own engineered project.