About the Unit

In this Unit, students will learn about climate change, its effects and ways of stemming it. They will explore the nature of solid waste pollution and identify ways in which this problem can be alleviated. In addition, they will study the causes of soil degradation, the methods of preventing soil degradation, and appreciate the importance of caring for the environment.

Range of Content

  • The environment is all the physical surroundings on the Earth, including all living and non-living things, and which affects life on earth. Deserts, forests, wetlands, grasslands, marine, freshwater and tundra are examples of environments which differ in vegetation, animal life, soil and terrain and climate.
  • Conserving the environment means trying to preserve natural resources so they will still be around in the future.
  • The activities of people may affect the environment in good and bad ways. Human activities have caused serious environmental problems which have changed the earth and its climate, and have impacted the health of many living things.
  • Climate change is a change in Earth’s overall average weather. Climate change is caused by an increase in the average temperature of the earth’s atmosphere due to the trapping of heat energy in the atmosphere.

Climate change has several detrimental effects including: harsher weather conditions (e.g. droughts), increased flooding (due to rising sea levels), distortion of the natural habitats and lives of many plants and animals.

  • The effects of climate change may be mitigated through several practices such as: conserving energy, conserving water, recycling, and planting trees.
  • Pollution is anything that damages or contaminates the environment. Solid waste is unwanted solid materials such as garbage, paper, plastics, metals, and wood. Solid waste is produced in homes, schools, and businesses (e.g. factories, farms, mines).
  • Solid waste pollution is a threat to public health and the environment, and is a contributor to climate change.
  • To minimise consequences of solid waste pollution on humans and the environment, solid waste should be properly managed. This includes its collection and transport to landfills (areas where garbage is buried) for processing or disposal, and monitoring of waste materials.
  • The production of solid waste can be reduced through several methods including: recycling, proper disposal of garbage, composting.

Soil degradation is the weakening of the quality of soil as a result of human behaviour or severe weather conditions. Drought, flooding and human activities, such as deforestation, poor agricultural practices and urbanization, can all put pressures on fertile land, causing the soil to become degraded or polluted.


  • Environment

Defining the environment

Investigating features/ soils of different environments

Conserving the natural environment

Effects of human activities on the environment

Adaptations of organisms to their environment

Defining climate change

Evidence of climate change

Causes and effects of climate change

Ways of reducing factors causing climate change

Solid waste disposal practices

Defining and reducing solid waste pollution

Effects of improper solid waste disposal

Causes and ways of preventing soil degradation

Effects of environmental problems on humans



About the Unit

In this unit, students will investigate the nature of light and sound energy, and how they interact with various materials. They will identify sources of noise pollution, note the harmful effects on humans and be aware of mitigation strategies.


Range of Content

  • Light is the form of energy which is detected with the eyes and enables vision
  • All objects are either transparent, or translucent, or opaque
  • Objects emit or reflect light, that is they are luminous or non-luminous
  • Different materials may cause light to behave in a variety of ways
  • Light travels in straight lines in all directions from a source (i.e. they radiate)
  • Sound travels in all directions from a source
  • The pitch of a sound is dependent on the length of the vibrating medium
  • Sound travels fastest through solids and slowest through gases
  • Excessive sound in an area can result in noise pollution
  • Loud noise can have harmful effects


  • Energy: Light and Sound

Distinguishing luminous and non-luminous objects

Investigating properties of light

Interactions of light with different materials, lenses, mirrors

Reflection/ refraction in daily life

Investigating properties of sound

Relating sound to type of material used

Effects of loud sounds

Sources and ways of reducing noise pollution

Conducting fair tests



About the Unit

In this unit, students continue to learn about the names, properties and uses of everyday materials begun at the lower grades, are clear about safety at all times, and recognise that materials are handled, stored and disposed of in different ways depending on their properties. Students will plan investigations; including controlling variables where appropriate e.g. fair tests.

Students will differentiate between reversible and irreversible changes. They will evaluate, through investigations, whether or not particular changes are reversible. They will assess the usefulness of some reversible and irreversible changes in everyday situations.


Range of Content

  • Materials exist as solids, liquids or gases.
  • Materials/objects have different properties, such as transparency, absorbency, strength, magnetic property, and heat conductivity, which determine their everyday use.
  • Improper disposal of some materials can affect the environment.
  • Materials can undergo reversible or irreversible changes.
  • Irreversible changes cannot be undone and form new materials.
  • Reversible changes can be undone.
  • Reversible and irreversible changes can be useful in everyday life.
  • Substances can change their state by heating and cooling.
  • Melting, freezing, evaporation and condensation can cause materials to change state.


  • Materials: Properties and Uses

Properties and uses of selected materials

Relate properties to uses

Classifying materials based on properties

Storage, handling and disposal of materials

Environmental impact of improper disposal

Designing materials for specific functions based on properties

Reversible and Irreversible changes

Investigating processes that lead to reversible and irreversible changes

Investigating changes of state through heating

and cooling

Every day examples of reversible and irreversible changes


About the Unit

In this Unit, students will learn about selected human body systems. Through observations, demonstration and research they will identify the organs associated with each system and state their functions.


Range of Content

  • The main structures and functions of selected human body systems
  • Circulatory system (Heart, blood, blood vessels). The main job of the circulatory system is the transporting materials throughout the body. It carries nutrients, oxygen and water to different parts of the body and removes waste.
  • Digestive system (mouth, oesophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine). The digestive system helps to break down food into a form that the body can find useful.
  • Excretory system (kidney, bladder, skin, lungs). Substances that may be harmful to the body are removed through the excretory system.
  • Nervous system (brain, spinal cord, nerves). The nervous system controls the body’s actions.
  • Reproductive system (penis, testes, vagina, ovary, uterus/womb). The reproductive system is responsible for producing offspring.
  • Respiratory system (nose, trachea, lungs). The respiratory system produces energy from food.
  • Skeletal and muscular systems (muscles, bones, joints). The muscular and skeletal systems work together to help the body to move. The skeletal system also protects major organs throughout the body.


  • Human Body Systems

Defining ‘systems’

Identification and functions of organ systems

Importance of systems working together

Identifying selected organs in each system

Path travelled by food in digestive system

Investigating movement

Modelling human body systems



About the Unit

In this unit, students will learn that substances can be combined to form mixtures.  They will classify mixtures according to their properties. They will learn to work cooperatively and develop problem solving skills as they investigate specific methods of separating mixtures.

Range of Content

  • Substances combine to form mixtures
  • Types of mixtures include solutions, suspensions, and colloids
  • Mixtures can be physically separated based on size of particles, magnetic properties and how readily they dissolve
  • Methods of separating mixtures include filtration, evaporation, sieving, and decanting



  • Mixtures

Investigating mixtures

Defining mixtures

Classifying mixtures as solutions, suspensions and colloids

Properties of materials used in separating mixtures

Simple separation techniques





About the Unit

In this Unit, students will learn that eating a balanced diet is important for good health and there are consequences for long-term consumption of unbalanced diets. They will recognise that obesity, diabetes and malnutrition are examples of conditions associated with long term consumption of unbalanced diets. They will identify the specific dietary factors that contribute to each condition, and link these to appropriate methods of prevention and treatment. They will also evaluate the use and misuse of drugs.



Range and Content

The key concepts, skills and knowledge students will learn in this unit are:

  • Unbalanced diets, resulting from eating too much or too little of a particular food type, can lead to ill-health
  • Obesity, diabetes and malnutrition can be caused by poor eating habits or prolonged unbalanced diets.
  • Consuming too much carbohydrates and fats in the diet leads to obesity.
  • Increasing the intake of vitamins and minerals (from fruits and vegetables) can help to prevent nutritional diseases.
  • Drugs are substances which affect how the body functions.
  • Drugs can be classified as beneficial (medicines) or harmful (if misused or abused) and legal or illegal.
  • Various diseases, substances and activities, can have debilitating and/or deadly effects, on the life span of humans, and therefore responsible behaviour involves – taking precautions against these diseases; avoiding/limiting intake of these substances; avoiding these activities and making life style changes.




Why is it important to have a balanced diet?

  • Explain some of the consequences of not having a balanced diet
  • Assess the causes of obesity, diabetes and malnutrition
  • Outline measures to mitigate against selected lifestyle diseases
  • Justify the need for eating healthy foods
  • Evaluate data to draw conclusions about the consequences of improper diets
  • Show concern for others who make unhealthy eating choices
  • Show sensitivity to individuals who suffer from food related illnesses or challenges
  • Use appropriate scientific language related to food and health


  • Diet and Drugs

Consequences of unbalanced diets

Causes of obesity, diabetes and malnutrition

Measures to prevent life style diseases

Importance of eating healthy

Examples of nutritional diseases

Defining ‘drugs’

Classifying drugs

Distinguishing ‘over the counter’ and ‘prescription’ drugs

Examining information provided on medicinal drugs

Beneficial and harmful drugs

Effects of drugs on the body