Learning

Preparing today’s children to become successful, responsible, fulfilled global citizens requires a new type of secondary education. It needs to be one that looks to the future, equipping young people for our rapidly changing world in which creativity, confidence, adaptability and collaboration will be vital attributes.

The expansion of GES to provide education for children of all ages (3 to 18) offers a compelling new option for parents in and around Geneva that meets this need.

Approaches to learning

Our teaching approach prepares students for their future. We use the most modern educational methodology. Students not only learn the important subject content, but also develop their individual, often unique, talents. Learning focuses on developing key skills that are in short supply such as creatively solving un-Googleable problems, confidently communicating ideas, working collaboratively, and approaching tasks in an open-minded way. These are threads that bind the whole curriculum.

Our staff are at the cutting edge of their subject’s pedagogy and deliver dynamic, inspiring lessons. Your child will not only achieve their academic potential, but will also enjoy their learning.

Interconnected curriculum

We blur the traditional lines between different areas of the curriculum, enabling students to connect their learning across subjects, and encouraging them to think critically and creatively in all their learning. The curriculum focuses on the same set of key skills - analysing, evaluating, problem-solving, reasoning, synthesising - in every subject. This means that the curriculum is much more coherent and enables students to make connections and apply these skills across subjects.

Enhanced curriculum

  • Breadth and Depth with Alexa Marett
    This course introduces students to key concepts in critical, linguistic and philosophical thinking and theory.
  • Genius Time with the GES Secondary Team
    Students decide on a skill or passion of theirs that they would like to improve independently. They pitch it to their teachers, clearly explaining how they are going to structure their self-study and outlining their short and long-term targets. Students choose a teacher mentor who will support them throughout the project.

Fitness, sport, and health education

Our approach to physical education centres on opportunity and enthusiasm. Physical education is embedded into the framework of the school, and we celebrate the benefits of being a physically active school. Studies show that daily exercise improves pupils’ focus, mood, sleep patterns, self-confidence and ability to retain information. We look to follow the ground-breaking initiatives in education which involve students participating in some form of physical activity every day.

Beyond this, the pupils continue to get weekly sessions of physical education led by our Head of Sport. The programme of study draws on the outstanding local resources to ensure that our students get access to a wide variety of physical activities. We create a breadth of opportunity that gives pupils the chance to find the sport or activity about which they can be passionate.

The aims of our programme enable students to:

  • show initiative, enthusiasm, commitment, teamwork and leadership
  • demonstrate a high level of interest and personal engagement
  • develop the skills necessary to enjoy a broad and balanced range of physical activities
  • develop knowledge and understanding of the factors involved in maintaining physical fitness, improving motor-skills and living a healthy and active lifestyle
  • demonstrate the ability to reflect on and evaluate their own performance and the performance of others

Academic support

Given a proficient level of English, we welcome all pupils. We assess and respond to students’ individual learning needs. Our approach to academic support is very inclusive. Where appropriate, we aim to support students with additional academic needs within the classroom context.

Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3 (ages 11-14), our students learn content and skills in line with the National Curriculum in England, as part of their initial preparation for IGCSEs.

Subjects are taught with a whole-school thread that ensures our pupils have the key life skills that they need for their future. These skills include problem solving and reasoning, interpersonal skills and communication, real world understanding and application of learned content, critical thinking and analysis, and how to work independently and as a part of a team. Subject learning at GES Secondary includes:

Core subjects

  • Art and design with Paola Hopley
  • Computing with Ronan McStravick
  • Drama with Karen Ball
  • English with Catherine Peart
  • Geography with Sarah O'Reilly
  • History with Alexa Marett
  • Lifeskills with Catherine Peart

  • Maths with David Flynn
  • Music with Lucie Goater
  • Science with James Taylor
  • Sport with Richard Stimpson

Languages

  • French with Alexa Marett and Sophie Rifflard
    Due to the wide variety of proficiency in French of our students, students learn French in classes streamed by ability across the whole school, enabling the students to work across year groups. Teachers seek opportunities to take students out into the French speaking community and getting real-life experience in speaking French.
  • German with Alexa Marett or Spanish with Sophie Rifflard

Sample Key Stage 3 Timetable

Students have 6 learning sessions each day. With a fitness session and a break mid morning, and a lunch break in the early afternoon. Lunch can be provided by the school, or students may bring a packed lunch to school with them. The school day ends at 16:10, with after school activities until 17:10, or 17:30 for sports activities.

Key Stage 4

During Key Stage 4, students prepare for their IGCSE examinations. The core subjects at KS4 are English, mathematics and science, and the foundation subjects are citizenship, computing, and physical education.

Students supplement their studies of these subjects with a variety of different option subjects. Before entering KS4, students will have been given guidance on selecting appropriate option subjects.

Key Stage 5

At Key Stage 5, we will offer a varied programme of study based on the highly sought-after A-Level Baccalaureate model.

This programme offers the academic rigour of the A-Level qualifications, which are well-respected by universities around the world, coupled with enrichment activities, a greater breadth of subjects and the opportunity for an extended independent project.

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