NEXT STEPS High School Ages 11-16

Why Prep School?

It is well known that the benefits of an independent education are cumulative and that they make most difference to outcomes for children the earlier the investment in them is made. The small class sizes in our Prep school mean that each and every child is well known by their teachers. We regularly see the children outperform their peers in other schools, including other independent schools, having started at the same baseline.



Specialist and High School Teaching

At Prep School your child will receive specialist attention appropriate for their age. From the age of seven this means an increasing amount of subject specialism; a maths lesson taught by an enthusiastic mathematician, a language lesson taught by a fully qualified linguist. This also includes science lessons in the High School labs for older pupils. This balance of specialist and class based teaching coupled with small class sizes and close attention to each pupils’ individual learning style encourages both academic and personal development. Please note that PE and Music Lessons for all Prep School and Early Years pupils are taught by highly qualified specialist teachers.

High School teaching of the Lower 3 science curriculum is well established and, through this, pupils enjoy the excellent facilities of the Schofield Laboratories, High School specialist teaching and the start of their transition to High School. Problem solving and Investigating lessons have been added to the timetable to widen mathematical skills and many pupils take part in the annual Primary Maths Challenge. Pupils leave the Prep School at the age of 11 well prepared for the challenges of High School.


The curriculum for Prep School is in line with, but not restricted by, the National Curriculum. Pupils are encouraged to become independent learners, confident in their own skills and the appropriate use of all resources. The curriculum draws on the strengths and interests of the wider teaching staff to provide specialist teaching in many areas.

An Enrichment programme allows pupils to explore wider opportunities such as sports, crafts, bushcraft and languages.

The subjects taught in Prep are: English, Maths, Science, Art, Design and Technology, Drama, French (introduced in Year 1), Geography, History, Religious Education, Computing, Music, PE and PSHE. Latin is introduced in Year 6.


Homework provides valuable consolidation of work covered during the day. Teaching staff ensure a balance of subjects and workload throughout the week.


Assessment is a continuous process through which teachers ascertain each individual child’s capabilities and achievements. English and Maths assessments take place each term. Assessments in science are carried out at an appropriate time at the end of each unit. Regular testing ensures that parents and staff have an immediate and accurate picture of each child’s performance and effort.

Reading and spelling are assessed at the end of the Spring Term. Other subjects are assessed by teachers using a range of strategies to ensure that each child’s progress is monitored and recorded on a regular basis.

From Lower 2 cognitive ability tests are administered each September. These assess verbal, non-verbal and quantitative reason skills. As children move through the Prep school the tests are undertaken in “exam” conditions.


An Enrichment programme, which starts in Transition, allows pupils to explore wider opportunities outside of the curriculum.  In addition all pupils from Upper 1 are members of the Prep Choir.

Preparing for High School

There is regular liaison between Prep and High School staff on academic work and pastoral care to ensure that the transition from Prep to High School is smooth and productive. Pupils in Lower 3 are eligible to attend the Entrance and Scholarship Assessment Day which is usually held at the end of January. A limited number of scholarships are awarded for outstanding performance.

A Day in the life of ...

Pavan in Prep School


After form time I start the day in Maths. Maths is one of my favourite subjects and today we are learning how to multiply using the grid method, breaking down the numbers with partitioning to make complicated things easier. I love the satisfaction from finding the answers.


Break time! At morning break I love having my snack and playing outside with my friends. If it’s muddy and wet we can just put our wellies on and still go outside. There’s loads to do in the playground. I play on the equipment and chat with my friends in other classes and year groups.


We end our morning with PE and today we are playing cricket with Mr Arnold. We are all practicing our bowling and batting as we play a very fast version of the game that means we all move around having a go at everything.


After lunch today I am going to a Prep lunchtime club - the Prep Orchestra! I am learning to play the cello and have lessons at school. The orchestra practices are one of my favourite parts of the week. We have all just performed for the whole of Prep School and our parents which was fun.


Our project in DT this term is to design and make our own cushion. Miss Avison has helped guide us through the design process and today I am practicing sewing the design before I make the final cushion.


Our last lesson today is science. This term we have been studying plants and today we are cutting up a flower and looking inside to see if we can spot the different parts we can see and identify what their functions are.


Afterschool club today is karate. I have been doing it for over a year now and really enjoy testing my balance while doing the high kicks!

What's happening in Prep School?


8th April 2024

Cherryvine – Spring 24

Below is a link to our Spring term issue of Cherryvine.  In this issue, we focus on Early Years as well as a round up of this term’s trips and events which...

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15th December 2023

Cherryvine – Autumn 2023

Below is a link to our Autumn term issue of Cherryvine.  In this issue, we focus on ‘growth’ as well as a round up of this term’s trips and events which included...

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10th July 2023

Cherryvine – Summer 23

Below is a link to our Summer term issue of Cherryvine.  In this issue, we focus on wellbeing as well as a round up of this term’s trips and events which included...

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