The Swanage School broadly follows the National Curriculum. 

Curriculum - Year 7 & 8

Year 7 is the first year at secondary school. All subjects are taught in mixed ability classes, except where is will benefit the cohort to do otherwise.

What subjects will my child study?

In Years 7 and 8 all students study:

Curriculum - Year 9

Year 9 is the third year at secondary school. During year 9 students choose their GCSE ‘option’ subjects which they start in year 10.

The core subjects of Maths, English and Science are taught in ‘blocks’, where students are usually split into classes according to how well they learn in that subject. Other subjects are taught in mixed ability classes. In Year 9 all students will study the same subjects as above, but now Geography, History and Philosophy, Religion & Ethics (PRE) are taught as separate subjects. Most students continue to study French, unless they need additional support with English or Maths.

During Year 9 students also have opportunities to gain certificates in practical skills to enhance employability, for example first aid, health & safety and food hygiene.

Please see our individual subject pages for more detailed information about the content and delivery of the curriculum.

Project Based Learning

In secondary school most subjects are taught separately. At The Swanage School we like to facilitate deeper learning, where our students have the time to become independent reflective learners, so we teach the humanities subjects through a project approach. 

An investigative approach

Project Based Learning (PBL) is a well-researched and respected teaching method, where students learn a range of subject areas through working on a particular project. Students are introduced to subjects through investigation, and gain understanding through learning independently. 

Beautiful work

Students will be immersed in learning, hands-on and inspired to create beautiful, meaningful work. Each project will have an outcome - a book, a presentation, a speech, an artwork or an exhibition, for example. 

'Real-life' skills

Collaboration between students, between subjects and with the local community is key. 

Projects connect to the 'real-world', and students hear from speakers, conduct fieldwork and consult with experts. Use of digital technology and other resources develop employability skills. 

Read more on our PBL page.