The Science Department

The Tarporley High School Science Faculty pride ourselves on the provision of a stimulating programme of study in which students aspire to understand the physical, chemical and biological processes that shape the world around us. Throughout all levels of science education, we strive to provide students with robust and up-to-date knowledge about scientific concepts, history and opportunities for solving problems of the future with scientific advancements. We aspire for students to be the scientists of this future, and encourage them to consider the many ways the skills they learn in lessons can be applied beyond their formal Science education. Our blended key Stage 3 allows students to understand the many common themes and links between the science disciplines, whilst the progression to key stages 4 and 5 evokes an appreciation of the individuality and differences.


Our Key Stage 3 Chester Zoo trip provides students with the opportunity to relate their understanding about animals and their adaptations to local businesses that are deeply involved in global conservation efforts. Public education is a key component to any conservation strategy and this visit allows students to see the impact of these projects on the organisms that are supported at the zoo but also the research and management that takes place in their natural habitats. This trip consistently proves an extremely popular part of the school calendar and inspires students into having a greater understanding of how they can have a positive impact on the organisms and ecosystems around us.


In addition to enriching student understanding through external trips, students also benefit from inspiring presentations from external specialists including outreach workshops from Newcastle University. Year 8 and Year 10 students enjoy the ‘Colourful Chemistry’ lecture which demonstrates many colourful chemical processes that link to the curriculum: redox, catalysis, flame tests, fuels and TM complexes. This exciting display engages students with dramatic reactions but also enhances understanding of different processes and their theoretical basis.


Additional outreach sessions are also available to year 12 Chemists who are invited to partake in the ‘Spectroscopy in a Suitcase’ workshops in which they learn about and witness how high-spec equipment like spectrometers are used. Students are also afforded the opportunity to interpret and predict the spectra from this workshop.


In the year 12 Chemistry trip to the University of Keele, students are able to use specialist equipment from undergraduate laboratory facilities to recrystallise paracetamol using Buchner filtration techniques and complete thin-layer chromatography. In advance of this trip, students synthesise aspirin in school and then analyse these samples using NMR spectroscopy in the University of Keele specialist-grade equipment.