Prep School Subjects

"Subject staff are particularly adept at providing appropriate challenge and allowing pupils time to consaider their approach to a task. Consequently, pupils become independent, resilient and confident learners who are prepared to test their ideas and progress well." ISI Inspection 2017

The curriculum is broad and well-balanced.  Traditional academic subjects are taught in a way that encourages pupils not only to acquire knowledge and understanding but enthusiasm for learning. Developing pupils’ ability to work together and independently is at the heart of teaching and learning in the Prep School. Clear feedback provides direction for self-improvement and pupils thrive on the variety, pace and excitement of learning they encounter every day.  The broader curriculum of Music, Drama and Sport is an integral part of Prep School life for our pupils.

Please use the drop down menu below to explore further information on our curriculum subjects. 

Art

Committed and innovative teaching allows pupils to build their skills in the creative arts and apply them across other areas of the curriculum." ISI Inspection 2017

Prep School boy drawing owl Private School Prep Art

We aim to give our pupils the skill and the confidence to realise their artistic potential. We want our pupils to become excited by the Visual Language, and to understand what Art is and what Art can be. Our teaching gives pupils a thorough knowledge of the basic elements of the Visual Language which are necessary to facilitate the creative, experimental and innovative work we openly encourage.

We want our pupils to enjoy learning and developing their creative visual skills, in a relaxing and rewarding way, leading to increased self esteem and a lifelong enjoyment of the subject.

Recently, several Prep School pupils achieved GCSE standard three years early by successfully passing the Silver Level of the Arts Award. The Arts Award is a highly regarded national qualification developing young people as artists and arts leaders. Bishop's Stortford College Prep School is one of a very few schools in the country to be accredited as an Arts Award Centre.

Special art events are held each year including the House Art Competition and a Fashion Show where Upper Thirds have the opportunity of modelling their creations, designed and produced on a theme, to an appreciative audience.

Design & Technology

Senior school boy in design and technology

Prep School pupils follow a comprehensive introduction to design through a range of projects.
 
The practical experience of designing and making is core to their lessons and provides the foundation for design in the Senior School.
 
The College is unique in offering the full facilities of a Senior School Design department to all pupils from Form 1 (Year 5) to Upper Third (Year 8).

Drama

"Pupils of all ages develop strong musical, artistic and dramatic skills." ISI Inspection 2017

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The Drama curriculum is very versatile and flexible, and this is aimed to suit all children of the Prep School as individuals. We understand personality differences and the diversity of characters that may be seen within one class group. A budding, eager actress, a timid, shy flower and all in between are encouraged with opportunities to shine.  Each and every child is positively encouraged to explore and discover themselves and express feelings and emotions through the medium of drama.

Drama has been specifically developed to excite, enthral and most of all encourage children to get involved, be involved and enjoy Drama as part of their school life.

Shell – Shell Drama is dedicated to helping the pupils learn about themselves and each other, how to interact positively and promote good team work. We look at creative expression, verbal and non-verbal communication. In the latter part of the year, pupils are familiarised with scripts and focus on creating, developing and portraying various characters.

Form 1 and 2 – Pupils are encouraged to develop their public speaking skills, both within the class and to specific audiences. They continue to devise and write scripts, whilst also experimenting with improvisation, hot seating and further role play. Shakespeare is introduced during Form 2, where we use physical drama to learn about his various plays and characters.

Lower and Upper Third – We use celebrities and reality television as a model for exploring various drama techniques in the Autumn term. Lower Third continue to develop their knowledge of Shakespeare in the Spring whilst Upper Third study the 1950’s case of Derek Bentley. We all then conclude the year by experimenting with various comedy styles and performances.

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English

Pupils in the Prep School embrace, engage in and appreciate all aspects of the English language.  The curriculum is delivered in an innovative manner in order to enthuse our pupils for a love of reading, writing, speaking and listening.

Pupils progress through Shell into the Prep School and in these years plenty of time is given for the pupils to consolidate the fundamentals of the English language. SPaG lessons (spelling, punctuation and grammar) run concurrently with the diverse programme taught to each year group across carefully planned themes.

The written word is celebrated in all its many forms. Pupils enjoy writing for different audiences and for different purposes and, as such, skills are taught to shape and develop the pupils’ ability to communicate effectively.

Reading is given plenty of time in the curriculum. Along with a termly set text, in which skills in literary appreciation are taught, there are weekly library sessions for all pupils. The pupils enjoy a range of stimulating experiences in these sessions as well as spending time enjoying a good read.  Pupils leave the Prep School as competent and confident readers and writers who are fully equipped for the challenges ahead in the Senior School. 

SF Said signing books

Author visits, book clubs, theatre trips, poetry declamation competitions, plays, a weekly library lesson and other library events enhance the work that happens in the classroom. When children are not in the library or buried in a book, they might be found on the stage in a drama lesson or play, reading poetry to each other, taking part in the Picture Book Award, entering (and sometimes winning) the “Kids’ Lit Quiz”, attending the annual Festival of Literature, writing their own work, entering a short-story or poetry competition, reading each other’s writing or even making a film!

Geography

Prep School Staff

In the Prep School we aim to stimulate and develop our pupils’ interest in, and understanding of, geographical skills and knowledge.

‘The Continents’ is the theme in Lower Shell (Year 3) and this simple study is linked to atlas work. Climate, the environment, tourism, food and tectonics are taken as special themes along with a study of basic continental geographical facts and figures. The College grounds are used for a mapping unit. This work involves the pupils in identifying school buildings, surveying and planning new routeways around the campus, investigating the layout of their classroom block and carrying out an environmental study.

In Upper Shell (Year 4) during the Autumn and Spring terms, the pupils undertake an in-depth study of India: the physical and human geography of the country, history, religion, the environment, tourism, weather and climate, and Indian crafts are studied as special themes. Pupils also produce an India project: this is a major piece of work and involves both library and internet research. During the Spring term the focus is, ‘Maps and Plans’. This develops the work covered in Year 3 and involves as much work outside the classroom as the weather allows! Pupils complete the year with a weather and climate topic. One highlight of this work is a study of extreme weather, around the world.

Fieldwork is a major focus during Form 1, Form 2, Lower Third and Upper Third (Years 5, 6, 7 and 8). Pupils experience fieldwork through our extensive field-study programme and they learn how to gather information for themselves, interpret the data they collect and present a fieldwork project using IT skills. Our programme involves a traffic survey, an infiltration rates project, a project in which pupils study cliff profiles and a settlements survey. The skills pupils learn to use to gather information build up year on year and by the time they transfer into the Senior School they will have produced projects in which they will have included photographs, field sketches, tally charts, they will have drawn and labelled their own simple maps, presented rock samples they have collected, and they will have collected data using various pieces of measuring equipment. Pupils are expected to research information for their project both in the library and on the internet and then use a variety of different methods to present the data in their projects such as pie charts, bar charts and spread sheets.

All projects have a standard layout: an introduction, methodology, presentation of results, an explanation of the data they have collected, a conclusion and finally they evaluate their project. The higher up the school the pupils progress the more complex their projects become.  

The settlements project undertaken in the Upper Third (Year 8) is handed on to the Senior School and contributes up to 20% of their final Transfer Exam grade.

Map WorkThrough atlas and Ordnance Survey mapwork, pupils in Form 1 (Year 5) learn about man’s position in, and his relationships with the world. The atlas work topic includes learning how to use the index and pupils also gain an understanding of latitude and longitude. A detailed study of transport networks and mountain environments then leads to the Traffic Survey fieldwork project.

In Form 2 (Year 6) pupils undertake a ‘Great Britain’ topic and find out about the country they live in. As part of this topic pupils sample a taste of basic geology, learn a little about the rocks under their feet and find out how these rocks shape the landscape. This geology topic also includes a fossils unit where pupils research information and have the opportunity to present their work to the class. The Department has an impressive collection of rocks and fossils which are used to enable practical work in this unit. This ‘Great Britain’ topic also includes work on weather and climate, the passage of the seasons, and farming. In addition, Year 5 atlas work skills are revisited with a series of ‘Key Stage 2’ exercises. Ordnance Survey mapwork is studied in detail before the Infiltration Rates project is undertaken in the second half of the Summer term.

Geography lessons

In the Lower and Upper Third (Years 7 and 8) pupils follow a syllabus leading to their Senior School Transfer Exam. Seven major topics are studied and then examined at the end of the course: Ordnance Survey mapwork, atlas skills, settlements, tectonics, physical geography, industry, environmental geography and a fieldwork project is undertaken by each of the year groups. Through their own research, pupils are encouraged to look as widely as possible at these topics, deepen their understanding and challenge their own thinking about the world around them.

Throughout their Geography careers in the Prep School, progress is monitored with topic tests and end of year exams. Outstanding work is submitted for display on the ‘Prep School Genius Board’. Other work by pupils is displayed on the walls in classrooms.

Geography expeditions

Every two years or so the Prep and Senior Geography Departments combine to organise a Geography Expedition. China has been our most popular destination in recent years but India proved an amazing country to visit for the group who toured the ‘Golden Triangle’ of Northern India, in the Summer of 2011. This expedition proved to be a life-changing experience for those involved. 

In July 2012, 35 Prep School Geographers and 5 staff visited Iceland: geysers, boiling mud, waterfalls, caves, arches, stacks and stumps, glaciers, rift valleys, the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, extinct volcanoes, lava flows, and that was all before lunch on the first day!

In the summer of 2013 there was a combined expedition with the Senior School to Russia.

The Department has, on permanent display, its unique collection of postcards sent to school by pupils when they have been on holiday! All four corners of the world are represented by the postcards on the walls!  

History

Pre-Prep History Invasion

History is not just the narrative description of past events, it is also a discipline that interprets past events. Whilst it is important to have a spine of knowledge, the key to good History teaching is offering the pupils opportunities to explore reasons and outcomes.

All pupils benefit from the study of their history and the history of other peoples'. By understanding decisions made in the past and by studying the implications of those decisions, it helps all people appreciate the consequences of their actions. History is a valuable subject in terms of citizenship.

The skills that are taught in the context of historical knowledge are important for life. The ability to be able to assess evidence, interpret that evidence, understanding the need to look carefully for one-sided opinLearning History in Shellions and asking relevant questions to discover the truth, help each individual live their lives. These are very important skills in the workplace and in society.

History should also be used to improve pupils' communication of their ideas. The organisational skills that can be taught in terms of note taking and argument are important to individuals if they are to be understood and respected by others. History is not just one strand. Political, economic, cultural and social history are inextricably linked and whilst historians use many lenses to construct and analyse the past there must be a strong understanding that all facets of the discipline are important to have a greater perception of the past. That is not to say that in the schemes of work we offer at the school there are not units that have a greater emphasis on one of these strands than others but, where it is possible the pupils are furnished with an overall impression of a time or event. The chronological shape of the schemes helps to achieve this from Form 1 to Upper Third.

Young people can access their history through the commercial media, which has no qualms about preventing the truth from getting in the way of a good story. History teaching has the duty to give children the encouragement and interest to find out things for themselves and not take what others say at face value. This does not mean that we are to educate a nation of cynics but rather we educate children to be individuals.

History is not as Henry Ford suggested. The sentiments of George Satayana are closer to the truth although we do not believe that studying History will prevent poor decisions being made. We are more to the opinion of Charles Wolfe whose observation was that those who do not study the past will repeat its errors, while those who do, will find other ways to err.

Aims/ethos of department:

In History we seek a curriculum that

  • provides a broad and balanced curriculum for all learners
  • provides a range of learning opportunities and styles for pupils. This includes the use of ICT
  • offers sufficient opportunities to succeed
  • enables individual learning needs to be catered for in relation to assessment by the teacher
  • provides opportunities for peer and self-assessment
  • makes links between history and other subjects across the curriculum

ICT/Computing

"ICT is a strength of the school with excellent factilities supported by a stimulating curriculum." ISI Inspection 2017

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The effective use of ICT has now become a core element of teaching and learning within schools. Pupils’ exposure to ICT will continue to grow throughout their school, university and career life and it is essential that children not only grow up working effectively with computers, the Internet, cameras and all other ICT equipment, but also develop an enthusiasm for the subject area.

The Prep School ICT department aims to satisfy many criteria: children should be able to transfer ICT skills to their learning in other departments; they should be able to move seamlessly into the rigours of ICT qualifications in the Senior School; they should be encouraged to use ICT independently, confidently and efficiently; and they should be encouraged to realise and discover their talents in areas above and beyond the standard curriculum. 

Each child in the Prep School from Lower Shell to the Upper Third (Year 3 to 8) has one lesson a week in ICT, developing their skills with Office software, touch typing, basic computing theory, and simple programming (visual and textual). The curriculum is under constant review as new technologies and advancements find their way into the world of ICT.  

"As they move through the school, pupils increasingly use the wide range of ICT resources... to develop their ability to analyse the results of their research and synthesise their findings to enhance their understanding." ISI Inspection 2017

Pupils from Form 1 (Year 5) upwards have access to a school email account, and their own account within the school’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE), both of which are used extensively. 

The school is very conscious of ensuring the safety of children in the virtual world and it is important nowadays that children are helped to understand the personal-safety issues surrounding the growth of the Internet. To this end, pupils are instructed on the safe use of modern technology and, as part of our duty of care, effective filtering systems are in place on our network.

Latin

Prep School Classroom

Latin starts, for all pupils, in Form 1 (Year 5), whereupon they embark on a four year course, leading to an internally set transfer exam into the Senior School. In the Latin department we celebrate the breadth of subject matter made available to us by the ancient world and look closely at the language of the Romans.

Latin is taught in a way that encourages the students to see and develop links with all other subjects, not only their English and French.

LatinWe find that most children are not afraid to “delve the depths” of grammar, especially in a language other than their own, and they enjoy the structure and logic of Latin which becomes a code breaking exercise, capable of stretching the ablest of minds.

The subject is taught using a variety of texts which reveal the details of Roman life and myths and therefore generate linguistic and historical learning, whilst at the same time asking the pupils to be as precise and accurate as possible in giving English translations. Background topics, such as slavery, gladiators, the eruption of Vesuvius and Roman Britain are often developed into interesting projects. Media interest in archaeological discovery also helps to foster interest in the children.

LatinThe pupils also experience trips to such places as the Museum of London, the Fitzwilliam Museum, Verulamium and Legion XIIII have been visitors to the school.

The department continues to relish the enthusiasm of the pupils and of the 90-100 children who leave the Prep School at the end of the Upper Third, currently 60+ continue with Latin, by choice, in the Senior School. Of these, several pursue the subject at GCSE and some will go on to take advantage of the AS and A2 courses available.

In a department which celebrates each child’s success, in a subject many children never get to experience, we are delighted to offer a Latin course which is available for everybody to enjoy.

'consociato haud certamen'

Mathematics

"Mathematical skills are very well developed throughout the school." ISI Inspection 2017

Prep School Staff

 

Mathematics contributes to the school curriculum by developing pupils’ abilities to calculate, to reason logically, algebraically and geometrically; to solve problems and to handle data. Mathematics is important for pupils in many other areas of study. It is also important in everyday living, in many forms of employment and in public decision-making. As a subject in its own right, Mathematics presents frequent opportunities for creativity and can stimulate moments of pleasure and wonder when a problem is solved for the first time, a more elegant solution to a problem is discovered or when hidden connections suddenly manifest.

Children are setted by ability in the subject, ensuring that the curriculum followed is at an appropriate level and pace for each individual. Children across the sets have access to the same core curriculum with extension work available, depending on the need, no matter what set a child is in. We enter the National Mathematics Challenges and regularly have Gold Award winners.

"From an early age, pupils are challenged to compete in mathematical competitions both nationally and against other schools, and they do so successfully." ISI Inspection 2017

Practical activities, paired and group work and, for our older pupils, their own electronic devices (laptop, iPad, android tablet etc.) provide the means in the classroom to help them develop their mathematical abilities and create mathematics enthusiasts.

Modern Foreign Languages

Engaged in German lesson Prep School Languages

We aim to inspire students to embark on a life-long enjoyment of languages. We aim to develop pupils’ ability to understand and communicate effectively in French, Spanish and German through enthusiastic participation in all activities and to give them a feeling of success and achievement whatever their ability.

We will achieve this through:

  • Building pupils’ confidence in using the new languages for real oral and written communication;
  • Extending pupils’ knowledge of how languages work;
  • Exploring similarities and differences between the target languages and English;
  • Developing pupils’ independence in using the new language through their understanding and use of key structures;
  • Fostering a positive attitude and interest in other cultures.

Organisation

We believe that exposing young people to a breadth of languages will give them essential skills to prepare for a competitive global marketplace and to interact in a culturally diverse society. Therefore all pupils in our Prep School start with French from Form One, and pick up German and Spanish from the Lower Third.

What can your child expect from a language lesson?

We create a stimulating environment where pupils are guided to use their language skills to communicate in a range of contexts. We achieve this through exciting and active tasks such as storytelling, role-plays and reading authentic resources. Pupils are encouraged to develop their enthusiasm for languages through extra-curricular opportunities, magazine subscriptions and use of a range of websites.

Across each year, pupils work towards meaningful outcomes demonstrating what they have learnt. For example, within a year our Lower Third pupils produce a comic strip in German, a wall display about themselves and their family in Spanish and take part in a fashion show in French.

We believe that grammar plays a vital role in increasing pupils’ independence in developing their language skills. From Form One, they are introduced to key grammatical concepts and the skills needed to apply them.

Breadth of opportunity

We recognise the importance of overseas trips in broadening the children’s cultural awareness and the opportunities which present themselves in allowing them the chance to practise their linguistic skills in a real life setting.

In September 2013, we celebrated the introduction of Spanish and German in the Prep School by running a poster competition for the European Day of Languages. As part of our House Competitions for the Autumn Term, pupils produced some very innovative posters to demonstrate the importance of learning different languages. We are currently developing our Spanish and German extra-curricular programmes and we are hoping to offer the first residential trips next academic year.

Our French extra-curricular activities:

Bergues – Form 1

The whole of Form 1 enjoy a day trip to France in the Summer term. After taking the Euro Tunnel to Calais we arrive in the small market town of Bergues and start on our town trail. Pupils work in groups to find clues and use a map and French instructions to find their way around the town. After a relaxed lunch in a typical French restaurant, we complete our town trail which takes us on a tour of the old ramparts and main sights of Bergues. The pupils have great fun exploring the town and trying out some of their French before returning through the tunnel back to England.

Boulogne – Form 2

Form 2 pupils have the opportunity to spend two days in Boulogne in October.  They visit a French market and find out about what it is like to live in Boulogne by interviewing its inhabitants.  Pupils also get a chance to discover some key tourist attractions by visiting a snail farm, a chocolate factory and an aquarium. Throughout their trip, they use their French in a range of contexts both by interacting with people around the market, at the hotel and in restaurants, and also by finding out interesting information in the different places they visit.

Chateau - Lower Third

During May half-term pupils in Lower Third have the chance to spend four days at le Château de la Baudonnière in France. They enjoy activities such as bread making, archery, climbing and a very muddy assault course, all instructed in the target language. There is a day visit to a zoo and a visit to a French market. Throughout the day, pupils interact in French with the people in the chateau and they are immersed in a French environment: a great way to improve their conversational French and their listening skills.

Cambridge – Upper Third

As a post-exam project, the Upper Thirds design a booklet for a French family coming to Cambridge.  They are told that the French family do not speak much English, and that they, as travel agents, need to come up with a full itinerary from the moment the family leaves Paris, to the moment they return home. The booklet is therefore designed in both English and French and contains information such as the family’s travel itinerary, details of the hotel they will be staying in, places of interest and Cambridge colleges to visit, meal arrangements, maps, etc.  To accompany this booklet, the children make a photo-story in French, illustrating what a family may want to do in Cambridge.  Their trip to Cambridge in June involves taking photographs as well as designing maps, collecting information, and familiarising themselves with places of interest in the city.

Music

Prep School Grandparents Day Music 3 Prep School girls in music concert, singing

Lower and Upper Shell (Years 3 and 4)

In Lower Shell pupils begin to learn an orchestral instrument as part of their curriculum. They spend two weeks on each of the following: violin, cello, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, trumpet, trombone, horn, percussion. After the trial period pupils choose, in consultation with teachers, which they are going to continue with and they then carry on learning this instrument for the remainder of the year and through the Upper Shell Year.

In addition to these instrumental lessons there are class music lessons and pupils do some singing and learning elements of music notation.

There is a Shell Choir and all pupils who can pitch notes with a reasonable degree of accuracy are encouraged to take part.

Form 1 and Form 2 (Years 5 and 6)

Prep School Brass MusiciansIn Form One pupils who have been learning instruments in Lower and Upper Shell are allocated into training bands and orchestras. Most will start having private lessons on their chosen instrument during this year. Pupils also have class music lessons where they develop their listening skills and also do some singing.

Pupils who can pitch notes with a reasonable degree of accuracy are invited to join the Form One and Two Choir.

Lower Third (Year 7)

Lower Third pupils embark on a number of projects aimed at extending their music knowledge both in terms of history and theory, and also emphasising the enjoyment of performing music together. Singing remains at the core of what we do and most lessons start with the class gathered round the classroom grand piano where we perform songs in a variety of styles and help pupils develop accuracy of pitch and above all a love of singing. In addition to theory and history work pupils have the opportunity to develop composition skills using the Apple Macintosh computers running GarageBand.

Upper Third (Year 8)

The main aim for the Upper Third year is to expand and consolidate practical and theoretical knowledge of music. Pupils will be able to continue developing their listening skills, knowledge of music notation and basic principles of theory as well as practical music making, both through composition and performance.

Pupils will take an active role in music making and the practical activities during the year will include: singing in most of the lessons, performing rhythms and rhythmic games, playing the keyboards, performing simple piano duets and composing, both using traditional handwritten notation and also music technology, working with Sibelius notation software and GarageBand. As part of the assessment process, we will undertake a number of recordings of the whole class singing as well as smaller ensembles, solos and duets.

The learning activities feature both individual and group learning, with many exercises devised for single pupils, a number of composition tasks completed in pairs and whole class performances. In addition to their work in the classroom, pupils continue to be encouraged to participate in extra-curricular music making within the school. Upper Third concerts, as well as Prep School concerts and assemblies, give the pupils a good number of opportunities to develop their performance skills

Physical Education

Boys Prep School Hockey Hockey Player IAPS Competition

Sport is a highly valued component of the curriculum at the College. In addition to four games afternoons, pupils also benefit from timetabled Physical Education and swimming lessons delivered by a highly qualified team of seven specialist teachers.

The Physical Education curriculum has recently been refined to ensure progression and to facilitate pupil tracking. The programme can be viewed in the table below.

Through this programme we aim to develop pupils’ competence and confidence in a range of physical activities which include team games, athletics and the more creative aspects of dance and gymnastics. We also aim to promote a life long enjoyment of physical activity and an appreciation of the benefits of an active lifestyle, whilst providing opportunities for personal and social development through individual, group and team work and taking on roles of responsibility.

Swimming features strongly in the programme for all year groups; taking every advantage of our Physical Education Lessonlovely pool and we pride ourselves on the standard of swimming achieved by our pupils from Pre-Prep through to senior level. In addition to improving  their strokes pupils also enjoy learning diving, water polo, synchronised swimming and personal survival skills.

 Netball Prep School Football

Physical Education lessons are taught primarily in the Sports Hall which offers a full size basketball court or two mini courts with baskets and four badminton courts. It is also well resourced in terms of gymnastics, dance and indoor Physical Education Lessonathletics equipment. In the Summer term we have sixteen courts available for tennis. Learning is enhanced by the use of video equipment which teachers and pupils use for assessment, movement analysis and feedback.

Physical Education and swimming lessons are taught in mixed sex and ability classes of approximately 20 pupils with the exception of Shell pupils who are grouped according to swimming ability and taught in smaller groups of 10 for swimming and 15 for Physical Education. In all swimming and Physical Education lessons pupils and teachers benefit from the support of assistant teachers who are either gap year students or recent graduates employed as sports coaches.

A Physical Education Department that spans all three sections of the College ensures consistency and continuity in the content and delivery of this subject.

Year Group    Autumn    Spring    Summer
Lower Shell
Year 3 (KS2)

   Gymnastics / Dance
   Swimming

   Gymnastics / Dance
   Swimming

   Tennis
   Swimming

Upper Shell
Year 4 (KS2)

   Gymnastics / Dance
   Swimming

   Gymnastics / Dance
   Swimming

   Tennis
   Swimming

Form One
Year 5 (KS2)

   Basketball / Badminton
   Swimming

   Gymnastics / Dance
   Swimming

   Athletics / Tennis
   Swimming

Form Two
Year 6 (KS2)
   Basketball / Badminton
   Swimming
   Gymnastics / Dance
   Swimming
   Athletics / Tennis
   Swimming
Lower Third
Year 7 (KS3)
   Basketball / Badminton
   Swimming
   Gymnastics / Dance
   Swimming
   Athletics / Tennis
   Swimming
Upper Third
Year 8 (KS3)
   Basketball / Badminton
   Swimming
   Gymnastics / Dance
   Swimming
   Athletics / Tennis
   Swimming

Religious Education

The study of Religious Education in the Prep School at Bishop's Stortford College seeks to deepen pupils' knowledge and understanding of the principal religious traditions represented in Great Britain.

Pupils engage in class debates to help them tackle moral and philosophical issues. Drama is often used in the classroom to help pupils’ understanding of religious stories and traditions. They are encouraged to become reflective learners and the department seeks to foster transferable skills in the pupils that can be used across several subjects. 

In learning about, and from, religion, and in tackling some of the big questions in life, pupils are encouraged to explore and reflect on their own values, beliefs and experiences. The department also seeks to nurture their spiritual, moral, cultural and social development.

Shell (Years 3 and 4)

Christianity: Study of Jesus
Judaism: Old Testament heroes
Islam: Muhammad and Muslim worship

Form 1 (Year 5)

Christianity: Different Christian denominations and their traditions
Judaism: Rituals and festivals
Sikhism: Guru Nanak

Form 2 (Year 6)

Ultimate Questions
Hinduism and Sikhism: traditions and festivals
Buddhism: Teachings of the Buddha

Lower Third (Year 7)

Beliefs About God
Prejudice and Discrimination

Upper Third (Year 8)

Good and Evil
War and Peace

Science

Boy in Science Lab Science pupils in the Prep School

It is our aim to develop every pupil's natural curiosity in the world around them.

The relevance of Science at a global, national, local and personal level can inspire pupils to develop enquiring minds and become successful learners who enjoy learning, make progress and achieve. We aim to make Science fun for everyone and through developing attitudes of curiosity, co-operation, perseverance, open-mindedness and responsibility, the children’s independent capability, knowledge and understanding grows.

In addition, the Science programme of study supports the development of essen2ad plant investigation work for Science Projecttial literacy skills, through discussion and the use of scientific vocabulary and terminology; numeracy skills, through obtaining, recording and analysing data; ICT skills, through using data logging and analysis, internet research and appropriate methods for communicating scientific information.

The Science department is housed in 4 fully equipped science labs, all with interactive whiteboards.  In Shell (Year 3 and 4), Science is taught by the Form teacher. Specialist Science teachers teach Science from Form 1 (Year 5) and the pupils follow a general Science programme into Form 2 (Y6), finally Science splits into the three separate disciplines: Physics, Chemistry and Biology in Lower (Y7) and Upper (Y8) Third.

We have developed our own schemes of work to guide the planning of our curriculum, ensuring coverage and progression in the knowledge, understanding and skills of Science. These skills are regularly assessed through topic reviews which allow pupils to address any misconceptions and plug gaps in their learning. From Form 1, all pupils sit an end of year examination to assist with future planning and setting.

Science is taught as a discrete subject, yet allows cross curricular links with an emphasis on Science skills and helps pupils to “Work Scientifically”.

Practical work plays a huge role in our teaching and we regularly take part in Science activities and competitions with other schools; we also make use of our extensive grounds and trips beyond to help make Science relevant and to bring it alive.

Overall, we wish to create a positive experience about Science at the College, where pupils arrive at lessons expecting to spend the time on their feet, using their hands and being creative.