Lower School

The transition between Reception and Key Stage 1 is an important one. We know that children of this age learn best with a varied and active approach.

Year 1

In Year 1, we provide an inspiring curriculum in a positive, joyful and caring learning environment. This is an important transition stage between the play-based foundation year in Reception and the more formal Year 2 curriculum.

The work covered builds on the phonic, English and mathematical skills that the children have learned in Reception. Learning is fun and we tailor the National Curriculum to our children’s needs in order to make it interesting, exciting and relevant to them.

English lessons are taught in whole class and small groups. We consolidate and build upon the reading and writing skills which were started in Reception. We incorporate a range of teaching and learning methods to suit the learning styles of the individual child.

We listen to each child read regularly and their reading books go home with them to allow parents to share in important reading time. By the end of Year 1, most children are confident readers and writers. The children’s knowledge and skills of Mathematics develops as a result of lots of practical, written and oral work. By the end of Year 1, the children have a solid understanding of basic number-work, addition and subtraction, shapes, space and measures.

Daily French lessons continue, following on from the Reception year and catering for individual needs and abilities.

We encourage the children to take ownership of their learning; whenever we can, involving their interests and own life experiences when selecting topics. Topic work continues to develop the children’s interest in science, geography, history, and music. Educational visits to places of interest, and guest speakers throughout the year enrich the learning experience for the children and provide them with valuable, practical ‘hands on’ activities.

During the week, the children also participate in computing, art, dance and drama lessons, all taught by specialist teachers and support staff in specialist teaching areas. Alongside a Lifeskills programme (PSHE), we ensure the children develop well academically, creatively and socially through the year so that they are ready for their next step in Year 2.

Close communication between teachers and parents is vital and there are plenty of opportunities to discuss children’s progress throughout the year and to participate in their achievements. During the autumn and summer terms, for example, children in EYFS and Key Stage 1 work together to perform a show.

Year 2

In Year 2, the children continue to consolidate and build upon their learning experiences from Reception to Year 1. They become increasingly independent in their learning through the broad range of activities on offer.

We continue to follow a creative topic-based curriculum, which is carefully inter-linked with a daily English and Mathematics learning as well as a strong emphasis on the French language.

In English and Mathematics, the children continue to follow the National Curriculum in England for Key Stage 1. In English, they are introduced to comprehension skills and develop their creative minds through a variety of genres. Mathematics lessons build upon the children’s knowledge with a balance of practical and recorded activities. Opportunities to extend knowledge and understanding of numbers through problem solving activities are regularly provided.

Specialist teaching continues for Year 2 children in computing, art, dance and drama. Children in Year 2 are given learning activities to complete at home to help reinforce the work being covered in lessons and to provide the children with the opportunity to share and extend their learning with adults at home.

Throughout the year children have opportunities to enjoy exciting trips ranging from the Château de Prangins, to French theatre, and performances at Simply Theatre,not forgetting the very popular residential adventure which finishes the year with a bang!

The opportunities offered to the children in Year 2 provide them with a wealth of learning experiences and opportunities for development in preparation for a smooth and seamless transition to Year 3, where life in Upper School begins.

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