North Star Academy

Reshaping the future


Google Classroom Instructions


Dear Parents, Carers, Students and Staff,

On behalf of all in Key Stage Three, I would like to officially welcome you back for the new academic year. As we are all aware, it has been a difficult year for many people, with unprecedented changes to all aspects of our lives, both in school and in life in general. 

At Bristol Gateway, we appreciate the support that we have received from everyone in the school community during these difficult times. We understand that last term was challenging as we tried to accommodate as many students in school as possible, while also delivering a program of home learning and teaching to those learning from home. I thank our dedicated staff for their adaptability and flexibility during that time.  I am also grateful for the resilience and adaptability of our students who have assimilated well back into the school community this term. 

This year, we are excited to be running new and revised curricula in several subjects. These curricula were developed last year with our students in mind to support all learners across the school to succeed and fulfil their full potential. We have also begun to introduce a new system of targeted small group interventions within the timetable to support our students to meet their EHCP targets. 

Already this term, our pupil points system has been refreshed and updated and our students are already busy earning their chosen rewards! It's wonderful to see all our pupils back in school, learning and making fantastic progress. 

I wish you all a peaceful and happy start to the academic year and I look forward to working with you throughout the year to continue to support our students in everything they do.  

Rachel Lynch

Head of Key Stage 3

 Key Stage 3 - Subject Curriculum Information

English Department

English curriculum intention and content.

At Bristol Gateway School our Key Stage 3 English Curriculum aims to provide students with the opportunity to build upon their reading, writing and comprehension skills including understanding a range of texts types and their purpose using both evaluative and analytical skills. Our curriculum overview builds upon the skills and knowledge acquired at Key Stage Two and introduces the key secondary assessment objectives broken down into developmental and age related expectations. All students in Key stage 3 will study a broad spectrum of texts including fiction and non-fiction which are designed to strengthen and embed key reading and writing skills. As students reach Year 9 these key skills are developed and fine-tuned through our Power of Reading curriculum which provides students with extended writing pieces intended to strengthen written accuracy and allow creative and analytical expression in preparation for the KS4 transition.

Year 7 & 8 Talk 4 Writing programme of study

Why Talk 4 Writing at Bristol Gateway School?
Talk 4 Writing is a unique process that uses spoken activities to develop writing skills. Quality writing is created by first expanding and developing students' oral language skills and then teaching the necessary steps for exceptional sentence, paragraph and text construction.

T4W is powerful because it is based on the principles of how people learn. The movement from imitation to innovation to independent application can be adapted to suit the needs of learners of any stage.

The ‘Talk 4 Writing’ approach enables children to read and write independently for a variety of audiences and purposes within different text types and themes.

The Talk 4 Writing Curriculum at Bristol Gateway School has been adapted to reflect the assessment objectives of the current secondary national curriculum for English therefore topics are broken down to ensure there is a focus on the six key assessment objectives throughout the year within our T4W delivery. Due to the needs of our learners there is a specific focus on the key writing and reading skills stemmed from the primary national curriculum and introducing our assessment objectives which are broken down into developmental stages from KS1 through to GCSE levels at KS4.

Power of Reading
In Year 9 and in alternate terms of Years 7 and 8 our students follow The Power of Reading curriculum. The Power of Reading curriculum is about teaching Literacy through using high quality books and creative teaching approaches (such as art and drama). This approach aims to engage and motivate children in their literacy learning. It also enables children to deepen their understanding of texts and provides a meaningful context for writing. The Power of Reading helps to develop inference and deduction and comprehension skills. It also involves children regularly writing in different genres and creates a more cohesive learning experience.  Literacy is at the heart of the curriculum and the texts facilitate a range of exciting cross curricular work.

For more information contact:

Mathematics Department

At Bristol Gateway School, we aim to ensure that all pupils develop an enjoyment of maths and gains fluency in the basic areas with mathematical skills that will allow them to succeed in day-to-day life. At the same time, more able pupils are stretched and challenged as they work towards GCSE.  All pupils are encouraged to recognise the importance of maths and work towards a suitable qualification.

Key Stage 3 - Maths

In KS3, pupils cover all aspects of numeracy and maths and their learning is tracked closely by staff to identify their current working level and ensure that their knowledge and understanding builds upon this in a meaningful way. Pupils have one lesson per week where they use Mathletics to recap the week’s topics and practise their skills.  They are able to use this website at home for independent learning.

The following topics, at an ability appropriate level, are covered each term:

Term 1: Number and place value, calculation

Term 2: Calculation, geometry

Term 3: Number and place value, geometry

Term 4: Fractions, decimals, percentages, ratio, probability

Term 5: Algebra, statistics

Term 6: Revision of the year’s topics


All classes in year 7 to 9 have additional numeracy lessons, on top of their maths lessons (year 7 have 4x per week, year 8 have 2x per week and year 9 have 1x per week).  The aim of numeracy lessons are to embed and strengthen key numeracy skills that are vital for mathematical success.  They follow a clear ordered structure that builds on previous knowledge and therefore should be taught in this order with mastery, not speed or amount covered, as a key focus.  The lessons follow a “Numeracy Passport” where students carry out individually planned work which focuses on their key areas for improvement such as number bonds, times tables and applying these to bigger numbers.  Once students have these skills well embedded, they move onto a “Numeracy License” where other numeracy skills are practised, such as multiplying and dividing decimals, rounding and money.

For more information contact:

Science Department

Year 7, 8 & 9 Science Curriculum

Course Description: Within Key Stage 3 students have 4 Science lessons per week, this is broken down into two term of Physics, two terms of Biology and two term of Chemistry. Students work scientifically in both practical and theory lessons, in Year 7 students have covered: Earth and the planets, inheritance and adaptation, forces, ecosystem processes, living things and their habitats and properties and changes of materials. 

Years 7 and 8 are located in our brand new KS3 block. 

Year 9 have tutor rooms in the main school block - This allows them a smoother transition between lower and upper school.

For more information contact:

Humanities, PSHE and Careers

Key Stage 3 – VIP

Course Description: VIP (Values in Practice) covers Humanities, PSHE and Careers and Citizenship. The course references Religious studies through our SMSC programme and PSHE focus. At Key Stage 3, pupils continuously build on the skills, attitudes, values, knowledge and understanding about the modern world and how environmental factors, religion and historical events have impacted the world we live in. Values in practice acknowledges and addresses the changes that learners are experiencing, identifying their next steps and progression onto further education or the world of work, the challenges of adolescence and their increasing independence. It teaches the skills which will equip them for the opportunities and challenges of life. Pupils are encouraged to become sufficiently confident in their own beliefs and values and learn how to contribute to a cohesive and compassionate society.

PSHE Curriculum Intent

At Bristol Gateway School we believe that every student has the right to access a personalised curriculum which supports their individual needs, interests and experiences. Therefore we offer PSHE as a discrete subject with specialised teachers leading the delivery of these lessons. It is also embedded across the wider curriculum through awareness days and whole school assemblies.

Personal, Social, Health Education (PSHE) equips students with the knowledge, understanding, skills and strategies required to live healthy, safe, productive, responsible and balanced lives. PSHE acknowledges and addresses the changes that learners are experiencing, identifying their next steps and progression onto further education or the world of work, the challenges of adolescence and their increasing independence. Pupils are encouraged to become sufficiently confident in their own beliefs and values and learn how to contribute to a cohesive and compassionate society.

As pupils move through KS3 they continually build on the skills, attitudes, knowledge and understanding they have acquired and developed through the repetition of the three core themes: health and wellbeing, relationships and living in the wider world (including economic wellbeing and aspects of careers education). PSHE allows pupils to build their confidence, resilience and self-esteem. It also enables them to recognise, accept and shape their own identities, to understand and accommodate difference and change, to manage emotions and to communicate constructively in a variety of settings. Developing an understanding themselves, empathy and the ability to work with others will help pupils to form and maintain good relationships as well as develop the essential skills for future employability and therefore better enjoy and manage their lives. PSHE education also makes a significant contribution to pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) development, their behaviour and safety, and to their emotional wellbeing.

When students reach KS4 there is a shift in focus and we begin to look at the key themes that underpin Health and Wellbeing. This is delivered through PiXL Wellbeing which has been developed to support young people to take responsibility for their health, life and mind. The aim is to inspire and empower our students to look after their wellbeing and lead a healthy, active lifestyle in preparation for adulthood.

The PSHE Curriculum helps children to:

  • Develop skills such as self-esteem, risk-management, teamwork and critical thinking.
  • Speak openly and participate in healthy debates.
  • Make meaningful cross-curricular links.
  • Identify their interests and develop their passions and own values.
  • Find out about themselves, the wider world and their place in it.
  • Develop their confidence, resilience, happiness and well-being.

Subject content

In the absence of a government programme of study we have drawn on guidance from the PSHE association in revising our Curriculum Framework for PSHE to ensure that it meets the needs of our pupils in today’s changing society. The Framework identifies the key concepts and skills that underpin PSHE education and help us to fulfil our statutory responsibility of delivering RSE (Relationship and sex education) and spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development, as well as prepare students for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of life. PSHE education is integrated into the curriculum throughout KS3 and KS4; and is delivered using an overarching theme for each term. This is to ensure learning in PSHE is revisited, reinforced and extending in age-and stage-appropriate contexts.

For more information contact:


Art Curriculum Overview 

Through a series of exciting termly projects students are introduced to a selection of famous artists work from a variety of cultures both past and present.  

The projects main aim is to develop knowledge in key elements of art such as line, shape, texture, form, space, colour and value, through exploring a variety of art processes and techniques such as clay, batik, print and painting.  

Exploring such techniques in the aim to develop their creative, imaginative and practical skills to enable them to express ideas and feelings, record observations and design ideas.  

Through their own explorations and the study of other artists work, students will develop visual language skills enabling them to express ideas and opinions using an art vocabulary. 

For more information contact:


The IT curriculum at BGS.

The curriculum at Bristol Gateway School is designed around the futures of our learners. It is vitally important for us to mirror society and therefore develop innovative curriculum ideas in order to engage our learners to achieve successful outcomes.

Our computing curriculum at Bristol Gateway School can be divided into 7 inter-related strands.           

Using the internet

The internet is at the core of our lives and therefore it is of paramount importance that our pupils develop the skills in which to use this safely, effectively and appropriately. Our learners will understand the real-world applications of the internet, and the ability to apply this to everyday life and tasks that they may be given in future education and employment.

Using a computer

The computer is a device that has had a decrease in use over the last few decades due to the development of mobile phone technology. However, having the ability to use a computer still extremely important. For our learners, it is vitally important for us to equip them with, at least, the basic skills in order to competently and independently complete tasks. This reflects our learners next steps in their lives. Pupils will engage with activities in which they will learn the components of computers and also activities in which they will develop their skills when on a computer.

Communicating and Collaborating On-line

We have never been in an era in which having the ability to communicate and collaborate online has been so important in our lives. From being able to message a friend or video call them, to being able to complete projects collaboratively with someone else around the world, we ,at Bristol Gateway School, learn the fundamentals in which this can be achieved both effectively, appropriately and safely.

Creating and Publishing:-

One of the most important aspects of the curriculum is for our learners to be creative with technology and explore its potential. The curriculum is solely designed around our learner’s futures. Therefore it is fundamental that they are given real-world tasks to complete and explore. From designing a presentation about themselves, to being able to set up a spreadsheet for finances and designing a website for a new business, our learners will explore a broad curriculum with opportunities for them to create and inspire.

Digital Media

In the ever-growing world of technology, it is important for our pupils to develop skills that they can apply to their real-world situations. Therefore, At Bristol Gateway School, we give our learners the opportunity to explore photo manipulation software. This is applicable to all our learner’s lives. Whether our learners are keen on magazines, posters or gaming, this can be applied to all. There are also opportunities for pupils to engage with video editing software.

Modelling and Simulations

Reflecting society is at the heart of the curriculum, being able to demonstrate the key skills that will enable our learners to be successful after Bristol Gateway School is our aim. Throughout the curriculum, our learners will be given tasks, just as they would in real life situations to prepare them for future education and employment.

Using Data

Having the ability to use data effectively is a really difficult skill. Our lives are driven by numbers, and most importantly giving our learners the ability to use software that they may need to use when they leave Bristol Gateway School. The skills they will develop over their time at this school will enable them to competently and confidently apply this to future education, employment and daily life.

For more information contact:


Key Stage 3 – PE

Covid-19 Update: Student and Parent Access to PE information can be found via this link 

At Bristol Gateway we aim to set the standards within PE and make our delivery bespoke to each student’s needs. The emphasis upon our curriculum is an active and healthy lifestyle that leads to the potential lifelong participation in physical activity. We aim to do this by utilising fitness facilities and training methods to inform students of appropriate techniques, and the benefits of exercise, as well teaching about the importance of nutrition, alongside a ‘standardised’ multi-sport curriculum.

We link our core planning to meet those of national curriculum guidelines for each key stage, whilst also ensuring strong links with our KS4 PE options. Our assessments link to our plans and are fulfilled each lesson and term so that each child has an opportunity to meet individual learning outcomes.

Our Core PE assessment model is an adapted version of the MEinPE assessment model. Below are our 3 key aims for each area of the MEinPE model, that we intent for students to meet by the time they leave Bristol Gateway School.

Physical ME





Leadership ME

Coaching ME



The ability to replicate a skill with the correct technique.




The ability to perform a skill with control, fluency, consistency and accuracy.


The ability to keep on practicing the skill and not giving up if unable to perform the skill at your first attempt.

The ability to communicate with other peers.





The ability to both win and lose gracefully within a competitive environment.



The ability to give all students in your group chance to give their opinions in the lesson.

The ability to answer questions correctly during class discussion.


The ability to recall information on component of fitness and training methods.

The ability to recall information about the location of muscles and bones in the body.

The ability to help the class set up and tidy away equipment.



The ability to lead a team in a competitive situation or game.




The ability to be punctual and bring all your correct kit to every lesson.

The ability to lead/support a group during a warm-up, activity or cool down.


The ability to comment on peer’s ability and give them guidance and help to improve.


The ability to recall the correct teaching points for the lesson and use a teaching task card.

The ability to attended extracurricular activities and enjoy physical activity outside the classroom.

The ability to full fill a healthy active lifestyle and eat a well-balanced diet.




The ability to have a growth mind set and give all challenges a go.





















Our department ethos is for our PE provision to provide a stimulating environment for each participating child, enabling the opportunity to deliver a positive impact on children’s life’s. This approach is underpinned by supporting the required elements for a child to engage and learn through active participation, sports/ activity must encompass this and be delivered in a fun and positive learning environment for all.

The curriculum is designed to be accessible and all students are entitled to have the opportunity to progress and reach appropriate levels of attainment in order to realise their potential. This involves teachers matching tasks to the needs, interests and abilities of the students in a learning situation which is challenging and stimulating. Ultimately, teaching and learning strategies are designed to stimulate, enthuse and enable students to gain personal satisfaction from their participation. Sport at Bristol Gateway has traditionally been very strong and it is important to continue to strive for excellence in all aspects.

Once students reach Year 10 they opt to partake in Cambridge Nationals Sports Science, working towards a Level 2 qualification. This course allows for students to work through the course, progressing through a Level 1 qualification, into Level 2. Students are taught in a manner that enables them to access the qualification in full, taking in to account EHCP needs, and individual circumstances with the support required.

For more information contact: