We implement the NI Curriculum in a way that ensures our standards remain high by combining the proven practices of the past with best modern teaching strategies and techniques. Our Foundation and Key Stage 1 classes (Preps 1 – 4) use Learning Through Play as a major constituent of their approach. Language and numeracy development is encouraged in a way that the children find enjoyable and practical but which is rigorously planned.
One of the main attributes of the Preparatory Department is smaller class sizes. A pupil in a smaller class size has much more interaction with his or her teacher, making the learning process more individual and refined to their needs. Pupils in smaller classes often feel much more involved with their education as they are encouraged to engage by asking questions during lessons and to speak confidently to peers and adults. From the teacher’s perspective smaller class sizes allow the teaching to be more tailored to suit the individual’s needs. A feeling of community exists within the school, demonstrated by its welcoming atmosphere providing a personal ambiance in which our young people thrive.
These subjects are taught by dedicated specialists who help their pupils to develop a love of these subjects as well as reach a higher standard of attainment.
- Music (P1-7)
- PE (P1-7)
- Games (P4-7)
- Swimming (3-7)
- Drama (P1-7)
- French (P3-7)
Individual Music Tuition
Tuition in string, piano, brass and other wind instruments is available by private arrangement. The school has its own choir (P5-7), recorder group (P6-7) and orchestra (P4-7).
PE & Games
Our Physical Education and games programme is extensive and an integral part of school life. The four aspects of the physical education curriculum of games, swimming, gymnastics and dance are effectively taught throughout the school by specialist staff. Our PE and games experiences include a carefully nurtured balance between performance and participation.
All pupils will have every encouragement and support to achieve excellence while almost all of the senior pupils will have an opportunity to represent their school in one field or another. In weekly outdoor sessions, younger children are encouraged to play with an extensive range of outdoor equipment. Pupils from P3 – P7 attend weekly swimming lessons throughout most of the year, with an inter-schools gala held in spring being an annual highlight.
Along with the weekly PE class for each year group, led by our PE specialist teacher, there is also a major weekly games session. At these, senior pupils take part in a planned series of lessons which introduces them to a range of basic skills in a variety of sports, while P1 – P3 pupils participate in Games as part of the PE Curriculum. Training sessions and fixtures for teams are generally held after school.
Throughout the year the older pupils will experience some of the following sports, depending on their age and individual circumstances.
Boys – football, rugby, hockey, cricket, athletics, tennis, cross-country.
Girls – hockey, netball, tennis, athletics, cross-country.
High quality coaching is provided by our qualified PE specialist and other committed teachers who are interested in promoting the enjoyment of sport as well as the acquisition of basic skills.
Our children have access to tremendous facilities at Pirrie Park where there are 2 gravel hockey pitches, 1 football pitch, 2 cricket pitches, 11 tennis courts, 6 netball courts, 1 basketball court and 6 rugby pitches while a large gym, sports hall and swimming pool are provided at the main College site on the Malone Road.