In the Pre-Prep department, children aged 5 to 7 years begin to use the skills they have acquired in the Early Years, within a slightly more structured learning framework.

They have the same opportunities to engage in stimulating, interesting, challenging and new activities, but the children are encouraged to approach new tasks with a greater degree of independence and self-confidence, using their past knowledge and experience to guide their decision making. At Upton we are mindful of the need for children to be resilient and free thinking, able to embrace success and failure equally, and always keen to improve and learn from their mistakes. This resilience is facilitated through a number of child-led projects which often involve working with peers, learning to trust others and respecting other people’s opinions.

A rich and varied curriculum provides stimulation and breadth of discovery, looking both to the past and to the future, preparing today’s children for tomorrow’s world. The weekly timetable is made up of traditional subjects such as English, maths, science, music, art, DT and history/geography,  plus other subjects such as Mandarin, French, drama, computing, PSHE, ballet, cooking, swimming and judo are also taught. Bigger desks, higher chairs and thinner pencils set the scene for handwriting, guided group reading, mental arithmetic and practical experiments.

PE bags, boot bags and rucksacks bursting at the seams, await a world of sporting opportunities and the chance to represent the school in football, tag-rugby and cricket. LAMDA exams, class assemblies, carol concerts, harvest assemblies, grandparents’ tea parties and the Pre-Prep concert provide the perfect environment for confidence and self-esteem to flourish.

Trips to historic dockyards, local woods and countryside, famous museums and safari parks stimulate and inspire young minds, and colourful classrooms with interactive displays and learning signposts remind us of where we have come from and where our educational journey will lead us. Playtime in our wonderful garden is a time to unwind, relax with friends or plot our next adventure story.

The opportunities in the Pre-Prep department are vast and significant and they are reflected in the amazing progress that the children make within these two formative years. Childhood is a journey full of awe and wonder where characters are developed, feelings explored and memories made.