Early Years is the first contact between the School and the student, and in many cases between the School and the family.
The first years of pre-school are of the utmost importance for the development of the child, therefore, we strive to help students develop into happy, confident, inquiring individuals who are interested in life and enthusiastic about the challenges they encounter. We empower our children to take a leading role on their lifelong learning journey, fostering their natural curiosity. Throughout their EY journey, students are exposed from their very first day to English, which is spoken at all times. This boosts their incorporation of the language, since the earlier the child is immersed in the foreign language, the better the results will be.
The Early Years Centre provides facilities for students in Pre-Kinder (3 to 4-year-olds), Kinder (4 to 5-year-olds) and Prep (5 to 6-year-olds). Designed with the future needs of the youngest students in mind, the three-storey building includes classrooms with differentiated learning centres, an age-appropriate multimedia projection centre, and a hall/mini theatre with ample space for collaborative work, a psychomotricity area, a Library, an art studio and many other child-friendly “nooks” to arouse curiosity, creativity and encourage positive interaction, through play.
Pre-Kinder (PK) is the beginning of our students’ learning journey.
It is the newest area incorporated to welcome The British Schools’ youngest students. The building infrastructure continues the lines of the EY Centre and the School as a whole: well-equipped and spacious classrooms designed with state-of-the-art technology. All spaces are flooded with natural light and views of our beautiful fields and gardens.
Music, art and sensory play in PK is paramount in order to enhance children’s confidence and build their social and cognitive skills. The PK programme is crafted to nurture and encourage emotional and social growth while building academic and cognitive awareness and strength.
The PK floor holds four ample classes, a learning centre in the common area with uneven flooring to spark discovery and creativity, libraries, books and games designed for the students’ age and interests.
Students will explore, experiment, discover, learn, have adventures and solve problems in an imaginative, creative and playful way within a beautiful environment.
The learning in Kinder continues the foundations established in Pre-Kinder. Children learn in a safe and healthy environment through play-based learning. They work in centres spread throughout the class and Shared Area where they are aroused to explore, wander, experience and engage in their natural curiosity to foster learning.
Some of the key learning processes that happen during Kinder are:
Language: Acquisition of the new language through different activities such as storytelling, rhymes, songs, and oral activities during Circle Time.
Reading: Reading sessions once a week, considering each student’s levels. There is also focus on the correct handling of the book, on identifying different parts of a book (cover, pages, illustrations, letters and words), etc. Students visit the Library weekly, where they are immersed into the world of books and fantasy. They listen to stories, search for books they want to take home and even assist in fixing or repairing books.
Talking: English is the main language spoken to which children during most part of the day. The earliest the child is exposed to another language, the better the results. In weekly phonic sessions they begin to identify and sound the different letters of the alphabet and slowly start to decode and blend short (CVC) words.
Writing: Children are exposed to various activities where they develop their writing skills throughout the year. They begin to add letters and words to their drawings which is the first way of expressing themselves through writing a child has.
Prep is the culmination of the Early Years’ learning experience, and as such it is an enhancement of the process that begins in Pre-Kinder and runs through Kinder.
Language: Children are exposed to different experiences and a variety of activities such as storytelling, rhymes, songs, show and tell and oral activities during Circle Time.
Regarding their understanding and expressing in English, their English comprehension is wider and they have widened their English vocabulary being able to express themselves in English using brief sentences.
Reading: Children are exposed to reading sessions in small groups and according to their level. Focus is put on letter sound recognition, decoding, and blending punctuation besides identifying the different parts of the book (title, characters, setting), and reading comprehension.
Writing: Children are exposed to a variety of writing activities where they begin to express and communicate through writing.
Prep students participate in Drama activities, where they express themselves in English and get involved in role playing.
Both in Kinder and in Prep students visit the Library once a week where they take out books for reading at home. We emphasise the love for reading and for books in general.
Being outdoors is core to the learning experience at The British Schools. The green of our beautiful gardens and fields makes our School an ideal place for developing students with outdoor skills and a lifelong connection with nature and our planet.
The benefits of outdoor learning are many: they provide immersive and adventure-like experiences of the natural world, allowing students to improve their coordination, strength and critical thinking, encouraging their physical and mental fitness whilst promoting emotional and social skills.
Transition to Y1
During the last weeks of their academic year, Prep students are guided into a range of activities aimed at accompanying them in their transition to Y1.