Food & Nutrition

Key Stage 3 Curriculum

Year 7 pupils are taught Food & Nutrition for the whole year whilst Year 8 pupils are taught for half of the year. Pupils can also opt to follow the subject in Year 9, again for a half year programme. The Key Stage 3 syllabus has been developed over a number of years to take into account the changes occurring within both the National Curriculum and examination specifications. However, as we have always maintained a policy of single-subject specialisms at West Buckland within the overall area of Design and Technology, it is considered more appropriate and more valuable to teach the subject from a scientific and nutrition foundation than from the ‘technology’ angle.

In Year 7, pupils start off the year looking at factors affecting food choice and how to make sensible choices. Nutrition guidelines, kitchen safety and hygiene are also covered. Food science topics such as raising agents have enabled pupils to combine both theory and related practical work which will always be the most popular side of the subject! Practical work is generally aimed at familiarising pupils with the room, equipment and practising basic skills and techniques.

Pupils in Year 8 are able to study topics such as diet and nutrition, preservation, staple foods, breakfasts and raising agents. Group work is encouraged at all times and pupils are able to use the new IT facilities for producing comparative studies of breakfasts and computer dietary analysis work. Practical work is always aimed at making healthy choices and pupils begin to work more independently and develop their skill base.

Year 9 pupils are expected to show increasing levels of practical skills and competence when handling food. The ‘Big Burger Debate’ is a six week project which enables pupils to find out everything there is to know about burgers, to try out recipe development, computer analysis and sensory testing. This is an innovative and original project which was created by the Head of Department and has enabled pupils to use ICT links in an appropriate and stimulating way.

GCSE Food and Nutrition

Pupils are able to select Food & Nutrition as one of their GCSE subjects. The new specification from WJEC has recently been adopted with 60% of the final grade coming from two Controlled Assessments, 40% from the terminal examination.

Prep School Teaching

All pupils in Years 3 to 6 benefit from a short course in the Food & Nutrition Department; Years 3 and 4 follow a practical cookery based programme for approximately half a term. Year 5 is allocated half of the Autumn Term whilst the two Year 6 classes have a whole term each. Again, it is predominantly a practical-based programme aimed at developing and improving the children’s dexterity and manual skills. However, Year 6 children are also introduced to the concepts of healthy eating and making informed choices.