Whether we realise it or not we all do chemistry every day – simply breathing in and out we perform a chemical reaction. Chemistry is involved in everything around us, from food to plastics, and from oil to drugs. As a department, we aim to stimulate a lasting interest and excitement in chemistry.

All boys study the Edexcel IGCSE course. Practical work is embedded at the heart of the course and equips our students with the knowledge and skills needed to access IB Chemistry.

Beyond the classroom pupils regularly compete in local and national competitions. Year 9 to 11 pupils have been successful in the Royal Society of Chemistry’s (RSC) Regional ChemQuiz competition and their national Top of the Bench competition, whilst our Sixth Form pupils have won many medals in the RSC’s national Chemistry Olympiad.

  • Sixth Form

    In the Sixth Form, a large number of boys continue with their chemistry studies, at either Standard or Higher Level, and a significant proportion go on to study science-related degrees at top UK universities.

    The IB course starts by building on ideas introduced at IGCSE before developing a much deeper understanding of chemical reactions and the properties of materials. The same core topics are studied at both Standard and Higher Level but the treatment of the topics at Higher Level include both greater depth and a more extensive application of mathematics.

    The core topics studied are: quantitative chemistry, atomic structure, periodicity, bonding, energetics, kinetics, equilibrium, acids and bases, oxidation and reduction, organic chemistry, and measurement. One option is also chosen from a choice of four that examines chemistry as the central science by exploring the overlap with biology and physics. There is much emphasis on practical work and pupils build a portfolio of experimental skills that are utilised in an individual investigation and a group project.

Latest science news


Rare collection of moon rocks land at KES

A rare selection of lunar rocks and meteorites collected on Apollo missions visit KES.


Newton’s apple tree plants inspiration for pupils

A graft from the apple tree that is believed to have led to Sir Isaac Newton discovering gravity has been planted at King Edward’s School to inspire the next generation of scientists.

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