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Pre-Prep

Curriculum Guides (PDFs)

 

Pre-Prep Curriculum

[ Key Stage 1: Art - Drama - English - French - Geography - History - ICT - Maths - Music - PE and Sport - PSHE - RE - Science ]

Early Years Foundation Stage

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) includes children from age three to five years and we have five EYFS classes at present to cover this age range. Art - paintingAt Blundell's Preparatory School in the EYFS the Nursery and Kindergarten follow the 'Early Years Foundation Stage' produced by the Department for Education. The EYFS curriculum is organised into six areas of learning: -

  • Personal, social and emotional development
  • Communication, language and literacy
  • Problem Solving, reasoning and numeracy
  • Knowledge and understanding of the world
  • Physical development
  • Creative development

At Blundell's Preparatory School these areas are covered through a variety of topics, which incorporate many practical tasks so the children have hands on experience of doing things for themselves. We are fortunate to have access to outside areas from each of our Nursery and Kindergarten classrooms so there are ample opportunities for children to cover these areas of learning outside of the classroom as well as in it.

Computers     Science - playing with water     Science - playing with water

From Nursery 2 children begin to follow the Abacus maths scheme, which continues into Kindergarten. This scheme has many practical activities that build on the mathematical activities covered in Nursery 1. The Kindergarten children also follow 'Read Write Inc.' to learn to read and write with a phonic approach. Collins 'Focus on Literacy' Language Scheme is also used to offer breath to the literacy curriculum. English - spellingThese schemes both build on the previous language and literacy activities covered in the Nursery classes. All children in the EYFS at Blundell's Preparatory School are encouraged to enjoy and share books with each other, individually and with an adult. Regular visits to the Pre-Prep library occur throughout the year from Nursery 1. Nursery 2 aged children and Kindergarten classes also use the Stanley Thorne's Primary Science scheme, which fits in with their topic work. Again this follows on from the investigative play carried out by our youngest children. From Nursery 2 the children begin to learn French using songs and games as the basis for their learning.

Assessment in the Nursery is done in line with the 'Early Years Foundation Stage' and in the Kindergarten the Foundation Stage Profile is completed as per statutory requirements. Teachers also keep their own records and work closely with the teaching assistants so that all children are working at their potential and extra support or extension activities can be given to individuals or groups as appropriate. Due to the small class sizes, with a maximum of 19 in any one class, many children in Kindergarten classes begin to move onto Key Stage One activities in the summer term.

For more information about the EYFS at Blundell's Preparatory School please contact either Mrs Elaine Filmer-Bennett – Head of Pre-Prep or myself.

Mrs Diane Kimber
EYFS Co-ordinator

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Key Stage 1

Art

The staff at Blundell's Preparatory School believe that the study of art places an important emphasis upon our pupils' creative and emotional development. Art in our school makes a major contribution to these aspects of education as well as to the spiritual and cultural development of pupils. In our school there is an ethos that values imagination, inspiration and contemplation and encourages pupils to ask questions about meaning and purpose. Art has a key role in the creation of this ethos born through practical experience and in its critical and historical aspects. Cultural development is central to pupils' art education and will develop their creative and aesthetic skills and experience through working with a variety of media and in response to and in the study of the work of artists, craftworkers and designers from a wide range of cultures and contexts, times and places.

Form 1N sketching     Form 2K's sheep

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Drama

Drama is an element of the National Literacy Strategy, and is therefore included as part of our English syllabus. However, we believe in the importance of allowing each child to develop speaking and listening skills, with a chance to stimulate and exercise their imagination using a variety of dramatic techniques and structures. Implicit in these activities is the opportunity for free expression, reflection and working co-operatively with others. Children in the Pre-Prep join in class assemblies and each year group presents a performance for parents twice a year.

Drama with the West Midlands Theatre Company     Drama - Nursery Play

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English

Language is an intrinsic part of teaching in all subjects in the Pre-Prep. Throughout the school day children are encouraged to use and develop their language skills through play, discussion and conversation. The language curriculum in the Pre-Prep is based on the National Literacy Strategy and the New Primary Framework, and at Key Stage One, one hour each morning is devoted to the teaching of language. During these lessons the areas of reading, phonics, spelling, grammar, punctuation, creative writing and handwriting are taught. The Read, Write scheme and other quality texts are used for these lessons and through these, the children explore a breadth of literature and are introduced to simple grammar and punctuation.

We strive to develop a love of reading in all our children. Reading is taught using the Read, Write Inc. scheme supported by a variety of other quality modern schemes and with guidance, when ready, children also choose books from their own level in the class or library, to read at home. A sound knowledge and understanding of phonics is vital in the learning of both reading and writing and the children are helped to build their phonic knowledge throughout the different year groups. During Years' One and Two children widen their knowledge of spelling and take home words to learn each week.

From a young age the children are encouraged to create their own stories and poems and to begin to use language and vocabulary confidently and to write independently. Handwriting is also taught and the Nelson scheme is followed throughout the Department. Children are assisted in forming a joined, cursive style by the time they leave Year two.

English

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French

French in the Pre-prep begins at the age of three and the children learn the new language through songs, games and action rhymes; sometimes puppets are used to introduce new words. With this young age group the emphasis is on speaking and listening in order to familiarise the children with the sounds of the French language.

French   French   French

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Geography

Year 2 trip to the seasideIn the Foundation Stage Curriculum geography is incorporated into the Knowledge and Understanding of the World area of learning.  Pupils are given opportunities to: -

  • Show an interest in the world in which they live
  • Comment and ask questions about where they live and the natural world
  • Notice differences between features of the local environments
  • Observe, find out about and identify features in the place they live and the natural world
  • Find out about their environment, and talk about those features they like and dislike
  • Begin to know about their own cultures and beliefs and those of other people

Enquiry skills at the Foundation Stage are promoted through direct experience, practical activities and fieldwork in the locality.

Year 2 trip to the seaside     Year 2 trip to the seaside
Year 2 trip to Budleigh Salterton and Exmouth

At Key Stage One pupils are taught geography through a variety of topics with cross curricular links. Pupils are given opportunities to: -

  • Develop their awareness and the interest in their environment
  • Begin to observe accurately and develop simple enquiry skills
  • Look at and discuss ways in which land is used and the purpose of different buildings
  • Investigate changes in the local area
  • Link human activities to places within the local area
  • Understand how peoples lives are affected by the local environment
  • Understanding the changing seasons and how the climate affects the growth of plants, the lives of animals and human behaviour
  • Have some understanding of how individuals, in different ways, contribute to the life of the local community
  • Begin to have an awareness of other people outside of their own environment
  • Begin to develop an awareness of cultural and ethnic diversity within our society, while recognising some of the similarities of activities, interests and aspirations of different peoples
  • Broaden their vocabulary, develop language, mathematical concepts and number skills within the context of geography
  • Communicate their knowledge in a variety of forms to include writing, drawings, simple diagrams and maps

Enquiry skills at the Foundation Stage and Key Stage One are promoted through direct experience, practical activities and fieldwork in the locality.

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History

The aims of teaching History in the Pre-Prep are to promote an interest and awareness of the past and to appreciate the thoughts, beliefs, motives and actions of people in the past. The children learn about people's lives and lifestyles. They find out about men, women, children and events from the past. They are given the opportunities to listen to and respond to stories and to use sources of information, such as books, artifacts and the internet, to encourage them to ask and answer historical questions. The children learn how the past is different from the present and this is enhanced by providing opportunities to visit places with historical interest. Recent trips have included a 'Victorian Workshop' at Tiverton museum, a visit to the 'Bygones' museum, a visit to Tiverton Castle and experiencing a 'Victorian Christmas' at Killerton House. All the children have also taken part in 'Nelson Day'. We celebrated the life of Horatio Nelson and learnt all about the Battle of Trafalgar.

History     History

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ICT

Children in each year group have the opportunity to work on PC's within their classrooms using a variety of programs. Children in Years 1 and 2 also have a weekly lesson when a laptop computer is provided for each child. They have the opportunity to improve and develop their knowledge and skills by using a scheme of work called Smart Learning that is also supplemented by a variety of programs. Much of the work they do is cross-curricular and many of the activities are chosen to extend their opportunities for learning and investigation in language, mathematics, science, history, geography and design.

ICT     ICT

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Maths

Mathematics in Blundell's Pre-prep is based on the National Numeracy Strategy objectives. Each class spends at least 45 minutes every day learning mathematics, with the emphasis very much on practical experience. Children are encouraged to explore and experiment in order to develop a sound understanding of the subject and to make the necessary connections. Children are taught the essential skills and vocabulary: they learn number facts: they relate mathematical operations to real life situations and they undertake problem solving investigations. As children progress they learn to record and discuss their work. Our aim is to give children experiences which will help them to develop a firm foundation of mathematical knowledge on which to build.

Maths     Maths

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Music

At the Foundation Stage music is included in the area of learning called Creative Development. Children progress through the stepping stones to achieve the early learning goals for music by the end of Kindergarten. Children are given opportunities to experience live and recorded music and learn how musical instruments produce different sounds. The children learn simple songs and build up a repertoire of their favourites. They have the opportunity to move and dance to music. They are introduced to the language of music and start to recognise changes in pitch, tempo etc. They learn to tap simple rhythms and make up their own. They use percussion instruments to accompany singing and create their own music.

At Key Stage One the children build on what they have learned in the previous years. They have the opportunity to listen to a wider range of music from different times and cultures. They learn to use their voices expressively by singing songs and speaking chants. They develop their skills on the percussion instruments and learn to create musical patterns and explore and organise musical ideas. Their aural memory is developed and they learn about how pitch, dynamics, tempo etc. are used. From Nursery to Year One music is taught by class teachers. In Year Two a specialist music teacher teaches the subject.

Music     Music

In addition to class music lessons there are plenty of opportunities for children to develop their skills and interest in music. Each year group performs an entertainment or musical play twice a year. As well as being great fun this is invaluable in developing the children's self-confidence and ability to perform in front of an audience. Music plays a major part in our daily assemblies and we like to invite groups such as Weapons of Sound in to school to organise workshops.

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Physical Education and Sport

The aims of teaching P.E. in the Pre-Prep are to help develop the children's physical competence and confidence and to enable them to perform in arrange of activities. The children build on their natural enthusiasm for movement and are able to learn and develop new skills in games, gymnastics and dance. Within their P.E. lessons the children are given the opportunity to work as individuals, in a group or as part of a team. P.E. also promotes positive attitudes towards healthy and active lifestyles.

Physical Education  Physical Education  Physical Education

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PSHE

In the Pre-Prep PSME helps children to develop confidence and responsibility and to be able to make the most of their abilities. The PSME curriculum aims to assists children in preparing to play an active role as citizens and to develop a healthy and safe lifestyle. It intends to enable children to develop good relationships and respect the differences between people.

All children receive pastoral care from their class teachers in the Pre-Prep and a high level of care is in place. Many classes have their own set of 'Golden Rules' for inside and there is also a set of rules displayed in the Pre-Prep playground. The Golden Book is used to record kind or helpful behaviour, which is shared with the school at Friday assemblies. Some classes have a system whereby children can have Golden Time or take a toy home to share their weekend.

PSHE     PSHE

The Curriculum Guidance for the foundation stage – DFEE sets out the requirements for the curriculum for 3-5 year olds in Personal, Social and Emotional Development. Children cover the Stepping Stones at their own pace and by the end of the foundation Stage the majority of children will have reached the Early Learning Goals.

The children from Kindergarten onwards follow the Folens Scheme entitled Citizenships and Personal, Social and Health Education. There are big books that accompany this scheme for class discussion and worksheets are also available to be used at the discretion of the teacher. There are many cross-curricular links and many stories are used to reinforce specific teaching points. Topics covered are age appropriate and include feelings, relationships, behaviour, school, home and local communities, responsibilities and promoting a healthy lifestyle.

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Religious Education

During R.E. lessons in the Pre-Prep department children learn about and from the principle religions represented in Britain today. Basing our studies on Christianity, children are helped to relate Christian beliefs and practices with those of the other religions particularly through the study of appropriate festivals and celebrations. In this way pupils are encouraged to understand and respect the religious, spiritual and moral values of others while developing their own.

Religious Education     Religious Education

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Science

Science in the Pre-Prep starts in the Foundation Stage as children progress through the stepping stones to achieve the early learning goals in Knowledge and Understanding of the World by the end of the Reception year. Through a wide range of fun, practical activities children start to explore, and find out about, their environment and the world in which they live. The children learn to be curious and investigate, solve problems, ask questions and use reference skills. They learn to use appropriate language and about the importance of health and safety.

Science   Science   Science

At Key Stage One the emphasis in science is on practical, investigative activities continues. Children are encouraged to develop their thinking skills and are given opportunities to work individually and in groups. They build on their knowledge and understanding of scientific concepts and learn to collect and evaluate evidence. Whatever the age of the child science should be exciting, fun and stimulate a curiosity, which should be life long.