Settling Into the Prep School

7 to 9 YEAR OLDS (SHELL Years 3 and 4)

Starting in Shell is a new experience for all the children, whether they are moving up from the College Pre-Prep, or, like several children each year, joining from another school. Great emphasis is placed on helping all the children to settle in. An Induction Day is held towards the end of the Summer term to begin this process.

9 to 13 YEAR OLDS (Years 5 to 8)

Several children join the Prep School's upper year groups, especially in Form Two (Year 6) and Lower Third (Year 7) and great emphasis is placed on helping these new pupils to settle in.

An Induction Day is held towards the end of the Summer term to begin this process and every new pupil is given a shadow at the start of term to ensure that he or she gets to the right place at the right time and is properly equipped!

Our experience is that after two weeks, new children no longer need a shadow and are moving confidently around the College.

“Pupils' attitudes to learning are exemplary. They approach their work and play with good humour, are highly enthusiastic and motivate themselves and their peers in their learning.” ISI Inspection 2017


Breadth and balance is integral to the education we offer. Our broad curriculum reflects this, with sport, music, drama and art being essential ingredients.

Academic organisation

Our academic structure is designed to enable us to cater for the social and academic needs of each child.

7 to 9 YEAR OLDS (SHELL Years 3 and 4)

The Shell curriculum is varied and encourages pupils to enjoy learning whilst discovering and developing their knowledge and understanding.  The following subjects are taught by the class teachers: Design Technology, English (including at least one session in the library), Geography, History, Mathematics, Science and Personal, Social & Health Education.

The broader curriculum of Art, Music, Drama, Sport and RE are taught by specialist teachers. ICT is taught by the Lower Shell teachers; in Upper Shell it is taught as a specialist subject.

Learning Support

Shell has two Teaching Assistants who support the Class Teachers to deliver the curriculum to pupils. They work within the classroom as well as with small groups or individuals. The Teaching Assistants also have a vital role in providing daily learning support for pupils with specific needs; this could be areas of difficulty such as spelling, comprehension, handwriting or delivering challenging tasks for more able individuals or groups.

The Teaching Assistants work in close partnership with the Class Teachers and Learning Support Teachers, Mrs Bridle, Mrs Vandenburg and Mrs Atkinson. In addition, Shell has Classroom Helpers who hear readers daily and support class teachers.

9 to 13 YEAR OLDS (Years 5 to 8)

Form One (Year 5) 3 Forms
Form Two (Year 6) 4 Forms
Lower Third (Year 7) 5 Forms
Upper Third (Year 8) 5 Forms

All these year groups are streamed on general ability with sets for Mathematics.

Subjects: Art, Biology, Chemistry, Design & Technology, English, French, Geography, History, ICT, Latin, Mathematics, Music, PE, Physics, Religious Education. In Lower and Upper Third also German and Spanish.

From Form 1 onwards, pupils have specialist teachers for every subject.

On Saturdays, pupils attend lessons in the morning followed by Games sessions in the afternoon. Shell pupils finish at 12.25pm on a Saturday whilst Form One - Upper Third pupils finish at 3pm. 

For an overview of the daily routine in both Shell and the Prep School, please take a look in our Current Information Booklet.