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Oxford Smart Activate – A coherent KS3 science curriculum

Oxford University Press
The Lowdown
Oxford Smart Activate
In a nutshell
Science / Curriculum / Resources / CPD
Key Stage

Combining a coherent, evidence-led curriculum for KS3 science with integrated resources, assessment, next steps and CPD, Oxford Smart Activate will save you time and help you to empower your students to become the next generation of future scientists.

Oxford Smart Activate combines a coherent curriculum that builds on KS2 and guides students towards GCSE with resources and assessments developed by teachers.

Six core components work seamlessly together to make up the full Oxford Smart Curriculum Service: curriculum, resources, assessment, next steps, CPD, and data and insights.

A coherent curriculum

Developed with coherence at its core, the Oxford Smart Curriculum for Science is carefully sequenced to build on prior KS2 learning and ease progression to GCSE and beyond. 

Importantly, the curriculum is designed to hold high aspirations for all learners and allow every student to find their place in STEM.

It is vital that students see themselves in the curriculum and can make connections between topics and their lived experiences. There are examples of everyday science and diverse scientists throughout Oxford Smart Activate, as well as an emphasis on where science can take students in the future.

Complementary resources and assessment

Resources and assessment have been developed together, so that you can be confident they work together to deliver a curriculum that benefits all your students.

Whether your department follows a two-year or three-year KS3 science curriculum, or you are thinking of changing your approach, with Oxford Smart Activate you are in control, and you have all the information you need to make informed and effective decisions.

Resources for students have been specially designed to be mindful of cognitive load, and top and unit learning journeys clearly demonstrate where students have come from and what they are working towards.

Metacognition is embedded throughout. There is a blend of formative and summative assessment, and questions are asked that match exactly to the content that has been covered, making it easy for you and your students to see their progress.

Personalised next steps

Next steps are an exciting new addition to the Oxford Smart Activate Kerboodle, offering students personalised journeys through the curriculum.

Students can be assigned weekly mini checkpoint quizzes which are auto marked in real-time.

Scaffolded support is then offered to students who need to develop their understanding to become secure, while extension activities are offered to students who are secure to extend and deepen their knowledge.

This enables quick and effective intervention, and helps to increase student confidence as they progress through the curriculum.

“This have given the teachers a real boost – just to see how well their students are doing”

Pioneer School

Integrated CPD

CPD and research resources to reinforce or refresh best classroom practice are available through the Oxford Smart Activate Kerboodle, and are accessible to all team members whenever they are needed.

There will also be a live CPD session once a term with a member of the Oxford Smart Activate team, drawing on key aspects of the curriculum and what we’ve learned from the data that has been generated.

Meaningful data and insights

The Oxford Smart Activate Kerboodle provides real-time data to monitor your students performance, giving you meaningful insights to help you plan, teach, and assess all your students effectively.

Misconceptions can be easily identified, with support on how to address them in the classroom. Your students can also see how they are performing and what they need to do next, empowering them to progress.

Sparking awe and wonder

Awe and wonder is at the very heart of the curriculum – we want all students to get excited by science and look forward to their science lessons – and so Oxford Smart Activate introduces ‘Big questions’ to get students talking, and is packed with practicals.

The range of practical projects provide opportunities for students to think and work like scientists, in turn building their confidence, developing their analytical skills, and allowing them to see for themselves the wonder of science.

When everything connects, anything is possible.

Need to know
  • 29 Pioneer Schools across the country have been using Oxford Smart Activate with their Year 7 classes since September 2021. Their feedback and experiences have been instrumental in the development of the service, helping to ensure that it works for all teachers and all students.
  • The Oxford SmartCurriculum for Science is underpinned by six guiding pillars: coherence; high expectations for all; responsive teaching and learning; learner identity; metacognitive learning; and awe and wonder.
  • Metacognition is fully embedded throughout, including opportunities in resources to review and reflect on learning and next steps, and teacher support for encouraging metacognitive strategies in the classroom.

Oxford University Press

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