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Inspiring a Life of Significance

“Every child deserves the right to leave her own unique mark on the world”

JUNIOR SCHOOL CURRICULUM

Curriculum Focus Areas

Social Justice and Diversity Education; Curriculum Innovation; Pastoral Care

CURRICULUM

Our aim is to provide a world-class education that centres around the holistic development of each girl and offers equality of opportunity, ensuring that every girl is included, supported, and that no girl gets left behind.

The curriculum in the Junior School has moved away from a traditional approach, providing many challenges, and engaging our girls in solving problems, applying themselves creatively, and expressing their understanding effectively. Part of the curriculum has been re-designed into modules to allow for more flexibility in subject choice, and to include exciting and innovative electives. We work closely with the IEB and are part of their Primary School Initiative (PSI) which “aims to broaden the awareness of the importance of good teaching and assessment practices at the primary school level.’’ Roedean takes part in the variety of benchmarking opportunities that are offered in this initiative.

Throughout their Junior School years, our girls are exposed to current local and global educational strategic initiatives that complement the curriculum and enhance learning, to ensure that we remain globally relevant and meet the needs of our 21st Century South African learners:

Click to view the local and global strategic Initiatives and programmes that complement the Junior School Curriculum.

Cognitive Education Initiatives

The 16 Habits of Mind, developed by Art Costa and Bena Kallick, provide the umbrella framework for the implementation of the Cognitive Education programme. The Habits of Mind are dispositions that empower creative and critical thinking, drawing forth certain patterns of intellectual behaviour when confronted with problems. This set set of dispositions guides behaviour and learning, and underpins the Roedean curriculum.

Cognitive Education Programme: Accredited by the University of Exeter, our Cognitive Education Programme exposes all our pupils to a range of thinking skills and the development of a growth mindset; these assist students in embracing challenges, knowing that talent can be developed, understanding that effort is required for success, and that failure is an opportunity to grow.

Mind, Brain, and Education (MBE): This interdisciplinary field brings together the latest research from cognitive neuroscience, psychology and pedagogy, with a dedicated focus on evidence-informed teaching and learning practices. Girls learn about the mechanics of the brain in order to better influence themselves emotionally and discover how to study and learn more effectively. MBE concepts and research also filter into the teaching practice, backing the curriculum design with more researched-based implementation of a hybrid curriculum.


Literacy and Numeracy Initiatives

Jolly Phonics and Jolly Grammar teaches children to read and write, starting with synthetic phonics, a multi-sensory approach to teaching literacy, in which pupils gently, but quickly acquire the literacy skills to break the code that will enable them to read fluently and produce independent pieces of work by the end of their Foundation Phase. The Jolly Grammar programme is extended to Form II (Grade 4)

Reading Eggspress: This is an online reading programme used from Form II – Lower IV (Grades 4 – 6). It offers a vast range of interactive reading activities, online children’s books, and literacy games to encourage our girls’ reading.

Pearson Abacus Scheme promotes a clear, positive attitude towards Mathematics and uses practical material to reinforce concepts.


Pastoral Care, Life Skills and Leadership Initiatives

Conscious Discipline Philosophy: Conscious Discipline empowers us to be conscious of brain-body states in ourselves and in children. It then provides us with the practical skills we need to manage our thoughts, feeling, and actions. With this ability to self-regulate, we are then able to teach children to do the same. When we understand the brain state model, we can clearly see the importance of building our homes and school on the core principles of safety, connection, and problem-solving.

Mindfulness is the ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we’re doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us. Mindfulness training helps our girls to understand that difficult situations may be unavoidable and gives them strategies to work through their feelings, calmly and without judgement. Mindfulness has a positive impact on reducing stress, strengthening focus and attention span, and supporting social and emotional growth. It also helps with problem solving and assists the girls in making better choices in the moment.

Steerglobal AS Tracking Tool: This is a a mental health tracking programme that is used extensively in other countries; it allows us to monitor the mental well-being of our girls, to identify girls who are at emotional risk, and to intervene and provide the necessary support as early as possible.

Social Justice and Diversity, and the Think Equal Programme: Our curriculum includes a strong commitment to social equality, gender, racial and religious equality, social and emotional health and well-being, and global citizenship. We follow the Think Equal programme during the first years of school. Think Equal is a global initiative, which calls for a system change in education, to end the discriminatory mindset and the cycle of violence across our world, and ensures positive life outcomes for our children. The curriculum then evolves into one of social justice and diversity in the older grades.

Round Square: We are a member of the Global Round Square Association, which is an international network of 200 schools in 50 countries, committed to developing courageous and compassionate leaders and to the values of the 6 Round Square ideals: Internationalism, Democracy, Environment, Adventure, Leadership and Service.


IT Initiative

The CyberSharp Digital Citizenship Curriculum has been implemented in the Junior School. Our aim is to develop smart digital citizens who can thrive in an exciting new digital world and who are empowered to confront inappropriate online behaviour with regards to social media, cyberbullying, trolling and cyber-crime.