At Greenfield, Prep comprises of Middle and Upper School which covers Years 3 to 6. As they transition through these year groups, our children are given greater independence and equipped with the necessary resources to enable them to become active and engaged learners. Further broadening of the curriculum ensures that pupils are given ample opportunities to discover new talents, embrace change and challenge, as well as consolidate and utilise their knowledge. Even more specialist teaching is introduced to ensure that the children are receiving the very best delivery and instruction across many areas of the curriculum. The introduction of residential trips from Year 3 onwards helps us to inspire personal and emotional growth and prepare children for the many exciting opportunities that senior school will hold.
Each subject builds on a foundation of knowledge, developing skills to equip children to be able to problem-solve, analyse, hypothesise and evaluate; thereby establishing important thinking and employability skills which become habitual in Greenfield children. Lessons are designed to promote curiosity and teachers will often answer questions with a question – there is no spoon-feeding here! All of this results in children who relish a challenge, are comfortable with failure and value the importance of their own journey to success.
Our ethos and educational philosophy are such that our pupils are provided with academic rigour, but without the pressure of a ‘hothouse’ environment. We achieve this by ensuring that our curriculum and methods of teaching and learning enhance attainment and exam results without piling on pressure.
Reasoning lessons are introduced in Year 4 because there is a heavy focus on this within 11+ exam papers. More formal exam preparation in the way of practice papers are introduced in the last term of Year 5. Each paper is forensically analysed to make sure the children have a very sound and solid idea of what they can do to improve.
Resisting the temptation to introduce practice papers earlier than Year 5 means that we do not cut our education short by replacing lesson time with exam practice; thus, the culmination of knowledge and understanding (which is what the exam papers are designed to measure) is greater for each individual and the outcomes far improved.
Throughout Years 3 to 5, children receive two pieces of Mathematics and two pieces of English homework per week and are also encouraged to read for twenty minutes each evening. In addition, Year 5 are offered Verbal Reasoning homework once a week although this is not compulsory.
In Year 6, during the final term before exams, children may receive up to two tasks per night in English, Mathematics and Science. An optional Verbal Reasoning task will also be offered. Following the exams, Year 6 will receive one piece of homework per night in Maths, English and Science.
All Prep children are given a series of ‘Take-Away Homeworks.’ These non-compulsory tasks intend to enrich the education of the children by enabling them to learn outside of the classroom. There is a new ‘menu’ each term for each year group and children are free to choose any task they like from the menu, complete it in their own time and hand it in to the teacher for the relevant subject. In devising these tasks we have used Bloom’s Taxonomy, where appropriate, to ensure the tasks will facilitate high-quality learning.
The learning at Greenfield doesn’t end when the exam period is over! Our original Post-Exam Year 6 Curriculum is designed to further embed knowledge and understanding, offer opportunities to explore new skills and focus on building on personal attributes. Activities such as Bikeability (formerly cycling proficiency), our sport leadership award and Dragon’s Den project are just a few examples and they aim to ensure that our Year 6 children are able to make the most of their final weeks at Greenfield, learning new skills and challenging themselves but, most importantly, making magnificent memories.
Beyond the Classroom
Opportunities for learning outside the classroom are plentiful and the children take their prior understanding to new levels whether that be taking on musical productions, competitive debating, forest school and wilderness skills or volunteering.
Citizenship is embedded across the school and especially throughout the Prep school. We aim to embed as many of the UN Sustainability Goals as possible across the curriculum and via assemblies, and special events.