The Lower School, Infants, consists of Years 1 and 2, or Key Stage 1. As in the Early Years they are taught by qualified and experienced teachers who are assisted in the classroom by fulltime teaching assistants. They enjoy a day full of exciting learning opportunities and it is in these years that the girls really consolidate their reading and writing skills. They are gradually given more independence and are expected to take more responsibility both in lessons and outside the classroom.
Educational visits out of school, visitors into the classroom, class assemblies and concerts, show and tell and many other activities ensure that their week is busy and interesting.
Circle time is used to promote their social development. This is a time when the children and their teachers sit in a circle and take part in fun games and activities designed to increase self-awareness, awareness of others, self-esteem, co-operation, trust and listening skills. They will also follow a programme for PSHE (Personal, Social, Health Education).
In addition to reading at home every night the girls will be asked to complete some other homework such as finding out something or perhaps playing maths games. In this way they are preparing for the next stage when they move up into the Upper School at the end of Year 2.
In order to ensure a smooth transition from Nursery and Reception classes to Lower school, the children move up into the vibrant and stimulating environment of Year 1 where learning continues to be fun and active. The teaching in both Year 1 and Year 2, centres around the personal learning of each child where activities are provided that will permit them to progress at their own pace. The children are inspired and motivated which promotes in them a work ethic of wanting to achieve, finding out more and doing their best.
During Key Stage 1, the children are taught to read and write by a very structured synthetic phonics programme of learning which ensures that they leave Year 2 as fluent readers and writers. Playing games, solving problems and practical tasks in Maths, make certain that all the children develop a very sound understanding of how numbers work together. This gives them the confidence to develop the strategies needed to manipulate numbers and work out calculations mentally.