Calendar Downloads for Summer 2017:
We provide a high quality of learning through a blend of traditional and modern methods, which stimulates a love of learning and allows pupils to progress and achieve their full potential. This is achieved through small classes (an optimum of 16 pupils) allowing a strong emphasis to be placed on recognizing and meeting the needs of the individual.
Years 3 and 4 build upon the excellent foundation laid by the Pre-Prep department through largely class teacher based learning. A rich and varied curriculum is delivered which is underpinned by the importance of the core subjects of English and Mathematics. Subject specialist teachers are used exclusively from Year 5 upwards and are equipped with the expertise to maximise the potential of each child. This is evidenced in the excellent academic results achieved in Public School Entrance and Scholarship Examinations over many years. We also appreciate that some children need extra support, patience and understanding to ensure that their needs are met. All learning takes place in an atmosphere of praise and encouragement.
The progress of each child is closely and regularly monitored through a variety of ongoing continuous assessments in addition to tests and examinations. Parents are informed through formal written reports and meetings, in addition to informal consultations should specific concerns arise.
Young children have a boundless enthusiasm for imaginative play and exploration of the environment. It is important that their natural creativity is encouraged and developed as they progress through the school years. The capacity to think creatively, to be innovative, to solve problems, to adapt to change and to work cooperatively are important skills which need to be nurtured. At the Prebendal we want to ensure that these skills are developed and that creativity and fun remain key elements of the curriculum.
There are opportunities for creative thinking in all curriculum areas, but creativity plays a particularly crucial role in English and Drama lessons. Whilst we acknowledge the importance of establishing a secure foundation of literacy skills, we also seek to ensure the child's aesthetic and social development. In English sessions we aim to develop an increased facility for creative thought and the ability to communicate in a variety of written forms with clarity and precision. This means that children must be allowed time to experiment with ideas in their first drafts and given opportunities to edit and refine their work before attempting a final draft. This 'crafting' process is common to all the arts, and demands intense concentration and effort. In drama sessions children are encouraged to explore sensory experiences, to produce spontaneous and polished improvisation, to develop various theatrical skills and work cooperatively with others.
It is important that children's creative ideas are valued and encouraged but undirected creativity is unlikely to result in a successful piece of work. To produce really original and interesting work in any medium requires both the time and freedom to experiment and the discipline of using techniques which have been practised and mastered. The benefits, however, justify the time and effort: improved self-esteem, the thrill of acquiring new skills and the deep sense of satisfaction to be gained from creating an original piece of art, music, writing or drama, whether it has resulted from personal or collaborative efforts.
As the choir school for Chichester Cathedral, The Prebendal has developed an enviable national reputation as a centre for musical excellence. 'Music for All' is our guiding philosophy and music can be heard throughout the entire school from dawn 'til dusk.
Each child receives specialist musical education throughout their time with us, and there is an emphasis on practical music-making from an early stage. The Pre-prep has its own Music Coordinator, as well as its own orchestra, choir and recorder ensembles.
In the school, around 95% of the pupils play instruments. The school buzzes with enthusiasm and commitment as children make full use of their opportunities. Our twenty-two weekly ensembles and activities include two orchestras, two concert bands and three choirs; from the time a child enters the school to the point of moving on, we hope to instill a love of music and to cultivate the talents and skills of each individual - whatever their level of musical ability. Our outstanding specialist music team includes a full-time Director of Music and an assistant and a further twenty peripatetic teachers.
Ensemble music and performance opportunities provide the children with real stimulae and enjoyment, so each year we hold a superb array of events. In addition to our showcase concerts in the Michaelmas and Lent Terms, and as part of the Chichester Festivities, we have regular informal concerts, a house singing competition and a week long music festival. Every week our orchestras and choirs lead the worship at our services - two of which are held in the cathedral itself.
Each year a high proportion of our pupils secure music awards to many of the country's leading schools. There are a number of Prebendal musicians currently working in the music profession. Around 150 practical music exams are passed each year - the majority at merit or distinction level and many at the highest grades.
Sport is an important part of school life. The Pre-Prep children have the opportunity to learn soccer, cricket, netball and rounders skills from a young age. They are taught by specialist coaches and all children are encouraged to participate in a wide variety of team building and co-operative games. The older Prep children have games sessions every afternoon whilst others have games on four afternoons a week. In addition many matches are played against other schools in a wide variety of sports. All children are encouraged to represent the school in a match at least once every term. The playing fields are within easy reach of the school, on the south side of the Cathedral Close. Outdoor facilities are good. In addition to the normal pitches, there are all-weather cricket nets, netball courts, tennis courts and an all-weather cricket pitch. The major sports played are soccer, hockey and netball in the winter terms and cricket, rounders, athletics, tennis and swimming in the summer term.
The period between 4.30 and 6.00 pm is known as club time. Pupil participation in clubs and school group activities is strongly encouraged. There are many clubs and out-of-school activities organised by members of staff. These are open to all children, whether boarders or day pupils. They vary from term to term depending on the interests and enthusiasm of staff and pupils. Some of the most popular include fencing, art, design and technology, general knowledge (in recent years we have been both runners up and winners in the National Finals), chess, cookery and model club. In the two winter terms, there is gym club for those interested in doing gymnastics and in the summer term, outdoor clubs, including swimming, athletics, tennis and cricket.
There are a variety of voluntary outward bound residential trips including regular ski trips, cultural trips to European cities and Youth Hostelling walking trips, all organised and supervised by members of staff. These trips often provide very special experiences and memories for the children.