English lessons in Years 7 and 8 are split equally between the study of Language and Literature.
The Year 7 course begins with the theme of conflict, through which the children explore key poetic devices and techniques, before moving on to look at descriptive and narrative writing.
In the Spring Term pupils study the art of script writing, developing skills in speech writing and delivery, studying well known orators such as Martin Luther King and learn important skills such as how to respond critically to texts with a formal essay framework.
In the Summer Term, the pupils look at language used in the modern world, studying digital channels and newspaper reporting.
In Year 8, with Common Entrance approaching, pupils study a diverse selection of poems as well as reading a Shakespearian play, developing analytical skills.
The pupils’ own creativity is also developed through exploring and challenging common themes or a particular viewpoint within a text and re-writing from a different perspective and by writing a play script.
Fostering independent learning is a fundamental part of the course across both years, with the children encouraged to express thoughtful, personal opinions and develop balanced arguments supported by textual evidence.
Most importantly though, we instil in them a love of literature in its many forms as well as a passion for creative writing and self-expression.
Our Year 7 and 8 Maths curriculum has been developed to offer rich access to complex problems.
We continue to emphasise a practical approach to Maths, attacking problems from every angle, but during Year 7 the children are split into two bands - Higher and Foundation. The curriculum is tailored to encompass the aims and objectives of the national curriculum and ISEB, but not dictated by them.
All children will study similar course content regardless of their banding, with the higher sets going deeper and the foundation sets focussing on the underlying skills needed for transition to a senior school. Children in the higher band will study extra topics of simultaneous equations and Pythagoras' Theorem, but the highest expectations are aimed for whatever the banding, with no child being constrained by the tier of examination they will sit.
All pupils start Year 7 by studying the concepts behind factors, multiples, primes, squares and cubes, orders of operation, number operations, negative numbers, fractions, estimation and significant figures - and - that's just in the Autumn Term.
These sequential ideas carry thorough to Year 8 where, much like in Year 7, a near-infinite supply of extension activities are available via our MyBede's extranet service - and the department is always open for extension work.
From the word go, and as students proceed through Years 7 and 8., assessments are integral to teaching and learning. Students and teachers use the information formatively and can address areas of weakness quickly and effectively. This enables children to make excellent progress and push themselves past their comfort zone.
As a result of this, we have many students performing well as at scholarship level, Bede's Prep pupils regularly score well in the UK Maths challenges and have more than 70% of pupils sitting the highest level of examination.
It isn't all about exams though of course, and our final term when we cover concepts like congruence and similarity, bearings and scale and transformation is always a particular highlight. Children finish Year 8 as confident mathematicians, ready for the challenges ahead.
Bede’s Prep could not be better placed to enable scientific investigations of the natural world.
Throughout Years 7 and 8 we use our location at the foot of the South Downs and our proximity to the beach to full effect, striking out from our modern, well-equipped labs and engaging in a near-constant stream of practical work which stimulates curiosity, interest and enjoyment in science.
Extra-curricular trips which embed learning are also a feature of our teaching during these years with Year 7 pupils enjoying the Engineering Day on which they participate in a range of inspiring STEM related activities such as designing a 3D rollercoaster and learning about the real life applications for Pythagoras. In Year 8 pupils travel to the University of Brighton to attend the Salters Festival of Science, undertaking challenges in the Chemistry laboratories there.
All children are taught by highly-qualified specialist science teachers who deliver a Year 7 curriculum broadly based on ISEB Common Entrance themes and concepts, enhanced with a variety of visits, experiments and activities that broaden their knowledge and experience.
Sciences are taught separately throughout both years and as children move through to their final year at Bede’s Prep pupils consolidate their learning in preparation for their summer exams, reviewing how they have learned and applied scientific methods through collecting and analysing data, drawing conclusions and evaluating their methodology – all skills they will need as they move through to senior school and prepare to embark on the GCSE curriculum.