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Key Stage 3 Curriculum

Parent Guide to new KS3 reports

There have been a number of changes to the Key Stage 3 curriculum recently. Our aim is to provide students with a broad, balanced and challenging curriculum that fosters a love of learning and enables all students to reach their academic potential.  We build on students’ achievements in Key Stage 2 to develop the breadth and depth of their knowledge, skills and understanding, preparing them thoroughly for the end of Key Stage tasks, tests and assignments in Year 9 and for taking GCSE and Vocational courses at KS4.

Each year within Key Stage 3 has a different emphasis:

07 In Year 7 the focus is on reinforcing and strengthening numeracy and literacy skills; establishing high expectations and developing students’ enthusiasm and independence for learning.

08 In Year 8 the focus is on maintaining high expectations, developing students’ self-motivation by providing students with a very wide range of learning opportunities including the world beyond school and raising the level of challenge to stretch the most able.

09 In Year 9 the focus is on preparation for the end of Key Stage tests or assignments, preparing students for the demands of GCSEs and on making choices for Key Stage 4.

The Key Stage 3 Curriculum at Alexandra Park School is broad, balanced and reflects the aims and ethos of the school:

  • English, Maths and Science – the core subjects – are given priority time.
  • History, Geography and Religious Studies – are taught separately but provide opportunities for collaboration.
  • Modern Languages form a major part of the curriculum with every student allocated to study one of two languages: French or Spanish, during Key Stage 3. All Year 7 students experience Mandarin lessons once a fortnight and provision for Years 8 and 9 has been increased to two and three hours respectively and now also includes a KS4 GCSE option. There is also the opportunity for students to study Turkish GCSE.
  • Performing Arts – the importance of Performing Arts is reflected in the time allocated.   Every student will study Music and Drama every week.  
  • Physical Education – is given time each week to allow team sports and individual skills to be developed in conjunction with a wide and impressive range of extra-curricular activities, including trampolining, cheer-leading, dodge ball, climbing and handball.
  • Art and Design – has a high profile in the school with specialist rooms offering access to a wide range of materials including photography, printing and sculpture.
  • Design and Technology – All students have the opportunity to study Food and Nutrition, Textiles and Product Design in a suite of specialist rooms.
  • Computer Science – is delivered through weekly lessons in Years 7, 8 and 9.  KS3 assessment is based on an e-portfolio and is offered at GCSE and Advanced level.
  • Astronomy – is offered in Year 9 as an after school subject. GCSE Astronomy provides students who are fascinated by the night sky with an opportunity to explore, measure and describe the continuing exploration of the Universe in which we live, while also developing important scientific enquiry skills. Students will cover four main topics, which include: The Earth Moon and Sun, Planetary Systems, Stars, Galaxies and Cosmology. The course will be assessed through one two-hour examinationd containing a variety of multiple-choice, short and extended answer questions. Students will also complete two observational projects; one using simple astronomical instruments, such as a telescope, and the other with naked eye or unaided observations.
  • Citizenship / Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) - is delivered by a specialist team of teachers in all key stages.  Topics include: Government and Politics, Rights and Responsibilities, Sex Education, Drugs Education and Careers.
  • Literacy and Numeracy are delivered across the curriculum in all years. A range of strategies are employed to provide additional support for students who have not achieved level 4 in Maths and English by the end of Year 6. The school also has a designated Literacy team and base room. The team is responsible for delivering Lexia, reading programmes aimed at identified groups and ‘Thinking Reading.’ Additionally, the  ‘Accelerated Reading’ programme is delivered to all KS3 classes through fortnightly library lessons; matching reading ability with appropriately challenging books and rewarding completion and comprehension of texts.

There are also opportunities for students to engage in learning outside of the timetabled curriculum. Astronomy GCSE is a popular option in year 9 and Latin from year 7.

With every unit of work, in every subject, students will experience a wide range of teaching and learning styles.  This will include individual and group work, whole class teaching, oral presentations or written reports, creative work and opportunities to make choices and have control over what they learn.  Students will be encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning, developing excellent independent learning skills, so that they become less reliant on input from teachers.


Key Stage 3 students will be set pieces of work that encourage independent learning skills and, in particular, skills to: preview and summarise information, use a number of different sources, organise and plan work and improve presentation.  Students are encouraged to transfer skills between subject areas, see mistakes as part of the learning process, set challenging targets and aim to achieve the best possible work. Students will get homework in English, Maths and Science every week and will also be set an additional lengthier piece of work or project from another area of the curriculum.

Homework support is offered within Department areas. The school library also offers a quiet area to study before and after school and during lunchtime.


Exam Results - GCSE

Students at APS are celebrating yet another year of excellent GCSE examination results. Under government reforms, GCSE grades for all subjects are now awarded on a scale from 1, being the lowest, to 9, being the highest. There has once again been a rise at our school in the proportion of the three highest grades awarded. More than 40% of the results recorded by pupils at the school were at the new 9 to 7 grades. This represents a phenomenal return on the efforts of both the students and staff throughout the duration of the courses.


Music lesson timetables

Music Lesson Registration click here to apply

Autumn Term 2020

Music lessons on most instruments start from Monday 21 September. All the timetables are available to download below. Note that we have multiple teachers for many instruments so new students will need to locate their teacher by looking through all the relevant schedules below. In a change to previous terms, the majority of students' music lessons will be at the same time each week for this term.  Students must note the following:

Instructions to students having music lessons

  • Remember to bring your instrument and music books to school on the day of your lesson
  • You will NOT be able to store your instrument in the music dept at the moment– keep it with you (but you should be able to leave it in your classroom during break and lunch)
  • Come down to the music dept (entrance next to the Food Cube) at the correct time – it is your responsibility to remember!
  • Remember you must wear a FACEMASK
  • Wait outside the room for your lesson, on the designated spot, until your teacher asks you to come in
  • Like all lessons, SANITISE YOUR HANDS before you enter the room (dispensers in corridor).
  • Near the end of your lesson, your teacher will tell you what to write in your yellow practise book (which you will receive in your first lesson)
  • After you have packed away, your teacher will ask you to sanitise your chair, music stand, piano (if you used it) and the door handle on your way out


Music lessons during year group lockdowns using online tuition

In order to continue tuition during the inevitable lockdowns and isolation cases that our students and their families will undergo in the following months, Haringey Music Service have decided to offer online tuition to students who are not in school. Full details, with guidance, are available in the document attached below Online Music Tuition HMS Guidelines. Please note, you must give consent in order for your child to receive online tuition. An email was sent out to families with a link to the consent form. If you did not receive it, please email Ms Stephens to request it. We can only arrange an online lesson with 48 hours notice.

If you have any queries, please email me at or ask your child to see me in the Music Office P7 any breaktime or before/after school.


Please note:

  • lessons take place on a rotating timetable throughout the school day
  • students are expected to make their own way down to the music department at their alloted lesson time, having informed their class teacher at the start of the school lesson that they will be attending a music lesson
  • we are unable to catch up music lessons missed by students as their teacher is here, ready to teach them
  • music lessons continue throughout the afternoon on Student Progress Days (when normal school lessons are cancelled).  Students should attend their music lesson at the scheduled time on these days (but do not need to wear school uniform, unless they are also attending their parent consultation at which all students in Years 7-11 are expected to wear uniform).
  • students may drop off their instruments in the room where they will have their music lesson (on the morning of their lesson) and collect it on the way out of school at the end of the day.  We ask that students make every effort to take home their instrument on the day of their lesson, otherwise the teaching rooms get very congested! Please note that, during the current COVID situation, students will not be able to store instruments in the department and will need to carry them with them in school.

We offer music lessons on a wide range of instruments from trumpet to drumkit, violin to saz. Around 250 lessons take place each week,with over 220 students learning an instrument or two in school.  If you would like to apply for lessons, please click the link above.


Facilities Hire

Alexandra Park School has excellent facilities that are available to hire outside of school hours.

We have recently had both our outdoor and indoor sports areas resurfaced, making them ideal for vaious recreational activities such as football, badminton, dance and martial arts classes.

This is in addition to our main hall, which is perfect for large gatherings, and a training suite equipped with 30 workstations, an interactive whiteboard and a state of the art Classwatch system for recording your training session (if desired).

We also have many standard classrooms equipped with projectors for smaller meetings.

If you are interested in hiring any of our facilities, then please email Frank Goodman for more information.