The Pre-Primary is situated at 78 Albert Road, opposite the High School buildings on the main school campus. The large, garden in the middle of the property provides a tranquil setting with ample opportunity for secure, supervised outdoor play. A staff of 15 adults allows us to meet the individual needs of each pupil, and to provide a loving, nurturing environment that is so essential in these early years of a child’s development. We view the Pre-Primary as an extension of the home, and our role as one of supporting our parents in the training up of their children.
We cater for three main age groups:
- In the year that children turn 4 they are admitted to our Junior Group – known as our Giraffes(Grade 000)
- In the year that children turn 5 they are admitted to one of our two Middle Groups – known as the Hippos and Bears (Grade 00)
- In the year that children turn 6 they are admitted to one of our two Grade R Groups – the Lions and Elephants (Grade 0)
All three groups are served by excellent and proven Bible-based curricula. Since we understand that God is central to every aspect of living, we have given Him his rightful place at the center of the Pre-Primary curriculum. The following scripture is foundational in this regard:
“You know how, when you were a small child, you were taught the Holy Scriptures; and it is these that make you wise to accept God’s salvation by trusting in Jesus Christ. The whole Bible was given to us by inspiration from God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realise what is wrong in our lives; it straightens us out and helps us do what is right.” 2 Timothy 3:15,16 (LB)
The normal school day extends from 08h00 until 12h00 – Grade R 12h30. Children requiring supervision until 14h00 and 15h00 may enroll in Early Care held at the Pre-Primary. Children requiring supervision beyond 15h00 may enroll in our Late Care Group that operates until 17h15.
This small group is in the care of a teacher and a full-time assistant teacher. Concrete themes within the child’s experience are used to explain as clearly as possible the different character qualities of God. This is so that children grow in an understanding of who God is, how special they are to God and how God is at the centre of every aspect of life.
A loving, nurturing environment is crucial for these little ones. They need to feel secure and safe in order to explore this new world away from home. They learn how to be part of a group, to share toys and to wait their turn. Kindness towards others and an acceptance of one another is stressed. They enjoy daily art activities, and “bake and make” once a week. Each day they participate in either a music ring or a movement ring. The weekly theme, with related activities, allows the children to explore the world around them and learn about God and His wonderful creation. Songs and rhymes are an integral part of every day, and there is always time for stories and puppet shows.
Indoor and out-of-doors free play serves to balance the program, allowing for structured times to be interspersed with opportunities for free exploration within safe boundaries.
Hippos and Bears
We have two separate groups, each with its own class room and teacher and a shared assistant teacher. We continue to adhere to the basic precepts as outlined for the younger group, but extend the activities so that they are appropriate for the slightly older child. We use the Association of Christian Schools International (ACSI) Bible Curriculum. This exciting program has many new ideas for songs, rhymes, drama and puppet shows to reinforce the Biblical themes that are presented.
We aim to develop the whole child, with five different areas that are given equal emphasis – the spiritual, social, emotional, intellectual and physical. This is achieved through a balanced daily program that allows for exploration, experimentation and learning through play and fun activities. Our many excursions provide opportunity for hands-on learning.
We work alongside our parents in the discipling and training up of these children in the ways of the Lord. “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.”Proverbs 22:6.
Grade R (or Grade 0, as it was previously called) prepares children for entry to our Grade 1 Classes. Each group has its own qualified and experienced Teacher. In addition, we also have 2 full time qualified Assistant Teachers dedicated to Grade R.
These children begin the Accelerated Christian Education (ACE) Phonetic Reading Program that is continued in Grades 1 and 2. It is an exciting and stimulating curriculum that six year olds really enjoy. It is designed to develop the basic skills that prepare a child to be ready to read.
There is just the correct balance of “formal” learning and fun activities. By means of a weekly “animal friend” the children are introduced to 35 phonetic sounds necessary for learning to read. Stories, songs, rhymes and tongue-twisters about these “friends”, in conjunction with an English workbook, foster quick learning of the letter sounds and serve to teach and build Christian character.
To develop numeracy skills, we are using an extended CAPS curriculum. Pupils will continue on this program when they move on to the Primary School. The program allows for many opportunities for a practical “hands on”, concrete approach, with subsequent opportunity for written application of the concepts explored. This is achieved by the supplementation of suitable workbooks and worksheets.
The children are encouraged to think creatively, to question and investigate situations and to begin to use initiative to solve problems.
There is also plenty of opportunity for free expression and creativity in our lively art lessons and music and movement rings. Time is always made for the pre-primary child to simply be able to play – which is a vital form of learning in the development of the child.
This balanced program gives our children an excellent foundation on which to build when they move on to the more formal phase of schooling that begins in Grade 1.
As space in our groups is limited, and our Pre-Primary is much in demand, we are able only to accommodate children whose parents intend them to continue their education in our Primary School.