Before moving into Senior Primary, the girls meet their teachers and are introduced to the new model of learning. They are now expected to be more responsible for their own learning. A class teacher guides them but there are many specialist teachers. Study skills and assessment techniques are put in place to support their learning, and lessen their anxiety about newly introduced formal assessments.
In Grade 4 the girls move from the Junior Primary into the more challenging Senior Primary department, but strategies are in place to narrow the gap between these grades.
In this grade the class teachers focus on the core learning areas. Other learning areas such as isiZulu, Sesotho, Afrikaans, Physical Education and Music are taught by specialist teachers. There is daily homework and the girls are able to utilise supervised prep in the afternoons.
There is also a wide selection of co-curricular activities. The highlight of the year is often their first school tour with their peers and teachers, when they spend two nights with their teachers away from home; also, at buddy picnics girls from each grade spend time together.
Grade 5 is an eventful and exciting year. The girls are involved in the classroom, on the sports field and in different cultural activities. Independence is the key as they manage their belongings, organise their day, and take responsibility for their tasks and classwork.
The girls go on tour to Lapalala, in Limpopo. This gives them hands-on experience of Natural Science, Social Science, English and Life Orientation, helping them to develop a good sense of themselves and going a long way towards developing their independence.
At this age the girls develop and change, as do their friendships. Help and support are always available from teachers as they navigate their way forward, especially as some begin their journey into adolescence.
In Grade 6 exciting new opportunities encourage the girls to grow in confidence, independence and responsibility. The year begins with a tour, where the girls are able to learn more about the environment. Personal iPads are introduced into the classroom and there is a focus on blended learning. The girls use a variety of applications to enhance their learning, and develop their ability to use technology safely.
The girls are involved in our outreach programme. They read with children from HA Jack Primary School.
Grade 7 is a very exciting year. The girls have reached the height of their Junior School careers and are now role models. They cultivate their leadership skills and take on new responsibilities through the M3 programme.
The M3 programme is a leadership and personal development programme that aims to assist each girl to extend herself in a way that will help build strong and positive habits, and develop goals that will support her in the future.
They become leaders and supporters, work together on committees and fulfil responsibilities. They apply for and motivate why they wish to assume specific leadership roles, and each girl is given a leadership position. There is a range of committees on which to serve and perform specific duties.
The leadership roles on committees are all-important as they help in the running of the school. The girls are expected to read in chapel and in assemblies, and to give out notices and read results.
The annual tour is fun, and aimed at developing leadership skills and teamwork. We encourage all the girls to go on this tour, although it is not compulsory. In the second term the tour to the Children’s Art Festival in Makhanda is a highlight, as they experience boarding school and are involved in a wealth of cultural activities.
In Grade 7 all the girls have iPads. They download their class readers and the iPads are integrated in all the learning areas. The iPads are a fantastic tool for research, and the girls create amazing projects using various apps. They participate in English and Afrikaans speech competitions, and take part in Zulu cultural days with other schools.
The girls work closely with the peer counsellors from the Senior School, collaborating on tasks to educate the Junior School girls and keep them aware of relevant topics, such as bullying and good eating habits.