Prep Department (age 7-11)

Teaching and Learning (Years 3 - 6)

The curriculum is designed to develop the four key elements of learning: knowledge, concepts, skills and attitudes. Effective learning is achieved through a variety of methods appropriate to the particular subject content and the age and abilities of the children. By the end of Prep, children will be literate, numerate and have confidence to use their knowledge, skills and concepts in a variety of situations. At this stage religious, moral and social skills are important, enabling pupils to work and play together successfully within a caring, self-disciplined environment.

End of Year Evaluations

Pupils sit NFER Evaluations in English and Maths during May, results are fed-back to parents in the summer term reports.

Literacy

As English supports learning in all subjects, special emphasis is given to the skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing. Speaking and listening skills are developed through discussion, debate, reporting, drama and stories. Children are encouraged to write in a variety of ways for a variety of audiences. The use of appropriate styles, spelling, vocabulary, fluency and neatness are carefully taught and monitored.

Reading for pleasure and information is encouraged at all levels and books are given a high priority within the school. Pupils are able to use our excellent school library and class libraries. Book Week is held each year to further encourage enjoyment of books. Reading ability is monitored constantly and a formal assessment is obtained annually.

Numeracy

Our aim is to enable pupils to see that mathematics provides a way of viewing and making sense of the world, to appreciate how it can be used to analyse and communicate ideas and information effectively and to tackle a range of practical tasks and real life problems.

We believe a good understanding of, and proficiency in, mathematics is crucial to the development of our children into adults who can function effectively in, and understand, the modern world.

Our scheme of work is based on the National Numeracy Strategy ensuring high standards, continuity and progression through the age and ability ranges. Mathematics is taught daily, in every class, with lesson time being extended through out-of-class activities and regular homework. The foundations of mental calculation and recall of number facts are established thoroughly before standard written methods are introduced. Daily oral and mental work develop and secure pupil's calculation strategies and rapid recall results.

Science

We aim to encourage all pupils to be curious about scientific processes while building a firm foundation of scientific knowledge. Pupils are encouraged to ask questions, devise experiments, investigate problems and arrive at appropriate conclusions. They also learn how to select and use scientific equipment in our newly refurbished and equiped Science Laboratory.

Religious Education

As a Catholic School we have close links with Sacred Heart Parish in Wimbledon. Whole school, year group and class Masses form a regular part of our worship. Weekly assemblies, both whole school and year group, usually presented by the children further enhance our understanding of Jesus and his message.

Important Christian feasts, such as Christmas and Easter, are prepared for and celebrated. The sacraments of Reconciliation and First Holy Communion although organised by the Parishes are supported in school. A great deal of effort is also involved in supporting those who are in need. An annual 'Bring and Buy Sale' and a 'Poor Man's Lunch' as well as raffles, quizzes and other activities raise funds for charities at home and abroad.

ICT

All the pupils have access to excellent ICT resources. Each classroom from Reception to Year 6 is equipped with an interactive whiteboard and computer. A secure computer network allows shared learning resources across the school, with internet access and wireless connectivity. A suite of mobile netbook computers are available for whole classes to use, as well as digital cameras, webcams and science monitoring equipment.

Our ICT curriculum is based on the National Curriculum but links strongly into our full curriculum – ICT being embedded in the entire curriculum. The school has a wide range of software and online content to support and develop the pupils ICT skills whilst developing other areas of the curriculum.

History and Geography

In their work in history and geography pupils are taught and encouraged to ask questions about their environment and the past. They learn how to use historical and geographical skills to analyse evidence to inform their opinions.

Music

Music is an integral and important element in the life of the school. The subject is taught by a specialist who teaches all year groups.

Extra curricular activities include junior and senior choirs, recorder club and orchestra. Pupils have the opportunity to receive individual music tuition in a variety of instruments from peripatetic music teachers. All girls benefit from the many opportunities to perform in lessons, assemblies, Mass and in more formal school concerts and productions.

French and Spanish

The teaching of French and Spanish (in Years 5 and 6) focuses on the four key skills of  listening, speaking, reading and writing. Grammar and phonics are introduced in order to develop effective communication. Language Days, trips to the French and Spanish Institute, and a school trip to France in Year 6 enable pupils to experience a foreign language in a variety of contexts and helps to develop the pupils’ self-esteem and confidence to communicate in another language.

Physical Education

Please visit our Sport webpage for full details of the school's Physical Education curriculum.

Art and Design

Pupils in Prep are taught by a specialist Art Teacher. They are able to use a wide range of media with ever increasing skill. Both formal and informal approaches are used to explain colour, line, form and texture in both two and three dimensional styles of expression.

Design and Technology encourages children to learn to think and intervene creatively to solve problems both as individuals and as members of a team.  They are taught to look for opportunities and to respond to them by developing a range of ideas and making a range of products.  The children are also given opportunities to reflect upon and evaluate past and present design technology, its uses and its effectiveness and are encouraged to become innovators.

Curriculum Policy

For more details on our Curriculum Policy please click here.