preparatory

Children aged 7-11 are taught by our subject specialists in the Prep department. Inspired by creative teaching, they enjoy positive relationships with staff who have the expertise to stretch and challenge.

Pupils achieve highly because lessons are well planned, ensuring full access to a wide and stimulating range of subjects and activities.

— ISI Report, Apr 2017


Curriculum

The core curriculum – English, Maths and Science - is broadened and enriched by excellent teaching of Humanities, Modern Foreign Languages, Critical Thinking, Music, Art, Drama, Citizenship and Well-Being, Computing, PE and Games.

Critical Thinking lessons encourage a problem-solving approach; our children develop excellent reasoning skills and those who take the Grammar Schools Entrance Test do so with confidence. Children are thoroughly prepared for Independent Schools’ scholarship and entrance exams - we have an outstanding record of children entering the school of their choice.

A weekly ‘Carousel’ afternoon gives all children the opportunity to participate in activities such as Cookery, DT, Samba drumming and Business Enterprise. Various trips, visiting speakers and exciting collaborative events such as concerts and drama productions further enhance the overall school experience.


All pupils benefit from excellent teaching

— ISI Report, Nov 2014

Development

Responsibility, working together and helping each other are key. Year 6 become Monitors, many choose to undertake our Platinum Award, which, based on the Duke of Edinburgh scheme, promotes initiative, independence and service in our senior pupils.

Small class sizes allow lots of opportunity for honing skills - every child has plenty of attention from teachers. A real range of opportunities is offered and the ‘have a go’ culture means that these are embraced.


(Children) show excellent application and perseverance and work collaboratively. (They) make excellent progress.

— ISI Report, Nov 2014

A Typical Day…

…might include: a practical in the Science Lab, followed by creative writing inspired by music or an image. Next might come a canter around the trim trail or a quick chess match at break. Back indoors for a Maths challenge, then perhaps PE - a complete contrast as lacrosse sticks are wielded instead of pencils!

A hot meal, cooked from scratch, will refuel all for the afternoon when there’s maybe a discussion and role play as ethics are explored in RS. Then off to the Art room for something more creative. After school, it’s perhaps the Berky Bows string ensemble, chess, or a sports club.

Days are busy and fulfilling at Berkhampstead - it’s not unusual to see a child dashing in from a sports fixture to then sit at a chess board and compete in a match. We have high expectations of the children and they rise to them. Consequently, they develop into genuinely well-rounded, ‘can-do’ individuals who are personable and active.