Just imagine a school where Learning for Life is a mindset and ‘CAN DO’ is an attitude. As a result, there is a deliberate yet progressive increase in nurturing independence, personal responsibility, and resilience in our children in the Senior Primary. This ethos culminates in the opportunity for every Grade 7 child to engage in our formal yet voluntary Learning for Life Leadership Programme. This programme includes School Service, Community Service, Physical Challenge, Organisation, and the Acquisition of a New Skill.
Our approach to discipline is similarly progressive: we aim to ‘Catch them Doing it Right’! To foster this, pupils are involved in drawing up class contracts at the start of each year. All expectations are guided by the concept of respect: respect for self, respect for peers, respect for teachers, and respect for the wider community. There is recognition of the fact that everyone can and does make a mistake, so deserves help to self-correct.
The Bridge House senior primary curriculum is aligned to the national guidelines of the IEB. It focuses on the acquisition and application of skills, with the intention of integrating learning with ‘the real world’at all touch points.
The curriculum is presented creatively, tailoring lessons and assignments to stimulate the varying interests, abilities and personalities of the children in their care, so much extension work is offered within the day-to-day lesson structure.
Camps, excursions, integrated projects, special events and the daily opportunity to use up-to-date technology (with access to our extensive network) are seen as integral to our teaching methodology. In national benchmarking assessments, our children consistently perform way above the norm, and over the past 10 years we have had regular representation in the Western Cape team to the International Maths Challenge.
Classes do not exceed 24 pupils, and Maths classes by Grades 6 and 7 are even smaller.
Pupils from Grade 4 to 7 follow the 1:1 iPad programme. In addition, the Bridge House Information Technology (IT) Centres provide state-of-the-art facilities for developing computer competency at every school level.
We have a partnership with the DIgital Media Academy ( DMA) which ensures that our pupils engage in projects linked to Robotics, Coding, AI, Big Data, Design, Sound Engineering and FIlm and Animation.
English is the medium of instruction and is taught as the First (Home) Language. Therefore, the importance of sound reading and comprehension skills and competent written and verbal expression guides the way English is taught.
Afrikaans is taught as a First Additional Language but is presented as either Advanced or Standard classes. isiXhosa is offered as a Second Additional Language, with the emphasis on conversational skills, yet prepares pupils to take the subject at FAL level in College.
The Life Orientation programme includes Physical Education lessons weekly and a varied, contextual and developmentally relevant programme for Life Skills, including study skills, and addressing issues pertaining to ethics, diversity and inclusivity. Being a good digital citizen is a very relevant and necessary topic of conversation. While the Grade 5s spend a term designing, building and running a community in ‘Real Life 4 Kidz’ as part of their academic programme, the life skills acquired in the process cannot be underestimated.
SOCIAL AND LIFE SKILLS
In the Prep School, the Grade 7s participate in the Learning for Life Leadership Programme, and all pupils have the opportunity to engage in our Service Club. Pupils are encouraged to exercise initiative and develop their leadership skills in the school context and beyond. We encourage social and life skills to be experienced and learnt in each sphere of the education programme to ensure the child grows and develops into a young adult ready for their secondary education phase.
TRIPS AND OUTINGS
All classes go on outings to places of interest. These trips form part of our integrated offering. In addition, camps are an essential opportunity to develop independence, group spirit and interdependence. They form part of our vision of holistic education. Camps, excursions, integrated projects and special events are integral to our teaching methodology.