The Early Years: Nursery & Reception
The Early Years Curriculum is designed to give the children high quality care and learning experiences. We recognise that children develop rapidly during the early years physically, intellectually, emotionally and socially. We aim to support and extend their knowledge, understanding, skills and confidence.
The Early Learning Goals linked with stimulating activities form the basis of a structured programme which aims to give the children a love of learning and, particularly for the Nursery children, to prepare them for the transition to the Reception class.
The curriculum is divided into the following 7 learning areas:
1. Communication and Language
2. Physical Development
3. Personal, Social and Emotional Development
6. Understanding the World
7. Expressive Arts & Design
The Lower School: Key Stage 1
In their first years at school each child acquires the necessary skills in numeracy and literacy upon which a first class education is based. A class teacher takes all core curriculum subjects, with specialist teachers taking Music, Art & Spanish.
In addition to the generous time allocated to English and Maths, children study History, Geography, Religious Studies, Science, PE, Design Technology/ICT as separate disciplines. We encourage an investigative approach and a keen awareness of the natural world. The children go on many excursions and outside speakers and visitors come regularly to Oakwood.
As the children progress through the Lower School the work becomes more formal and ability groups within the classes allow the teachers to stream for English and Maths. This ensures that the more able are really stretched but allows others to go on at their own pace without falling behind.
The Upper School : Key Stage 2
Weekly spelling and times tables tests are more formal and assessments are held at various times during the year depending on a child's year group. The work becomes more demanding and the children progress by stages to the final preparations for Scholarship and Entrance examinations to secondary schools as well as Key Stage 2 SATs. Our task in the Upper School is to prepare children for the schools which are right for them. Parents and children are consulted frequently to help them select and successfully apply to the secondary school of their choice. Scholarship pupils are identified and those, as well as all children from Year 5 upwards are given extra weekly tuition. Virtually all Oakwood pupils are accepted into the schools of their first choice, and their strong performances in entrance examinations have resulted in many scholarships and offers of places from the finest secondary schools in the region. These include Trinity, Whitgift, Wilsons, Old Palace, Croydon High, Wallington High School for Girls, Wallington County Grammar School for Boys, and many more.
Overall, the Oakwood curriculum is challenging and comprehensive, designed to foster a love of learning, sound study habits and the ability to think, learn and work independently. Such a foundation enables each girl and boy to move up with confidence into secondary school.
Children in the juniors are taught by both a class teacher and different specialist teachers for certain subjects. In the Upper School the children have a full and varied curriculum covering the traditional academic subjects as well as Art, Music, PE, Spanish, Classics (Years 5 & 6 only), DT and Information & Communication Technology (ICT). There is a suite of PCs and a wide range of CD-ROMS to which the children have access. All classrooms from Reception upwards are fitted with a projector to further enhance the teaching in many subject areas. We ensure that the children are exposed to a wide range of literature, with the older children borrowing books from the library.