We live in the most amazing world and universe that has been created by an awesome God. He has put everything together perfectly. His creation is beautiful and astounding – from the smallest micro-organism, how our bodies work, the consistency of the physical factors of the world, the fun of watching chemicals react, to the beauty and order of the universe. Science not only teaches us about the world we live in but it also teaches us how to approach, and solve problems and to look at issues critically so we can make informed decisions.
Science is made up of four key areas with an overarching study of the Nature of Science. This helps us understand where our scientific knowledge has come from, how we learn in science, the language of science and how we can work together to solve the problems of the future. Biology is the study of living things. This includes microscopic living organisms and cells, genetics, plants, ecology and life processes. Chemistry includes the study of atoms, matter and the how and why of chemicals reacting together. Physics is the study of the physical world. This includes motion (movement), forces, energy, electricity and magnetism, light and sound waves and, in NCEA level 2, nuclear reactions. Earth and Beyond is the fourth area of science and this is not taught beyond curriculum level 5. This area covers our solar system, seasons, the moon, geology, volcanos and earthquakes. As the levels in science increase so does the level of difficulty and depth but the more you learn in science the more amazing the world becomes!
Science is taught from years 1 to 13. The youngest student can start to learn how things work in our world. Once students reach curriculum level 4 they have 4 periods of science a week with specialist science teachers.
The Head of the Department is Genevieve Walker. Gen has a science degree in physiology – how the organ systems of the body work – and has been teaching for eight years. Gen teaches Level 5 Science, Level 1 NCEA Beta Science, Level 2 NCEA Biology, Level 2 NCEA Chemistry and Level 3 NCEA Biology.
Adrian Bosman has a Masters in Technology: Chemistry and is in his second year of secondary school teaching. Adrian has several years experience working in various laboratories, including pharmaceutical, agrochemical, mining, nuclear power, military and environmental fields. Adrian also spent 16 years in the tertiary education sector in South Africa where he was involved in teaching and research work. The research was on the medicinal properties of plants. His chemistry and laboratory knowledge is a great asset to the school. Adrian teaches Level 4 Science, Level 1 NCEA Alpha Science, Level 2 NCEA Physics and Level 3 NCEA Chemistry.
It is a privilege to be able to offer so many science classes in a small school. The Level 2 and 3 courses are tailored to enable students to continue into tertiary education. We have had a number of students go on to science studies at university and we look forward to many more having an influence on New Zealand's scientific future. If students do not choose specific scientific careers after studying science, and learning its skills, they will have gained invaluable tools for lives.