Year 6 (Cedar)
Year Six combines preparation for senior school examinations and interviews with access to a balanced curriculum from which the pupils benefit. A measured approach to entry at eleven with the size of the class allowing for strong pastoral care, children aspire to secure offers from a range of schools beyond Avenue House. Well-equipped and sensitive to effectively manage the needs of all, the process proceeds smoothly whilst the inclusive atmosphere prevalent throughout the school celebrates the success and achievements of all pupils. The final year is a rewarding and valuable time for all involved, where children look to the future and reflect fondly on their formative years.
The curriculum in Year Six is covered by a skills-based approach. Skills such as organisation, time management and editing are developed; enabling students to complete work independently and achieve their potential. This then links to consolidating examination and interview technique, required for 11+ entrance examinations to senior schools. In English and Mathematics, Year Six pupils have abundant opportunity to complete practice papers with teacher input and in timed conditions. Skills are not taught in isolation as they have greater meaning and relevance if given cross-curricular contexts. In this way, subjects such as History and Geography can be applicable to English and Mathematics. Shakespearean plays are closely analysed in English and History lessons – cross-curricular learning can give children a deeper understanding. English tackles the main areas of reading and comprehension, creative writing, reasoning, language and vocabulary, grammar, spelling and drama; Mathematics and Science are topic based, with repetitive practise of key skills.
History focuses on WWI and events like the sinking of the Titanic. In Geography, Year Six students acquire a broader knowledge and awareness of news features, as well as topics such as ‘Coastlines in the United Kingdom’. ICT is taught using modern and current software, challenging pupils to add to their repertoire of competencies. The work of significant artists is explored in Art lessons, techniques are modelled and cultivated and children demonstrate great pride in their compositions. RE and PSHEE enhance each other as well as highlight the importance of ‘British Values’ and children’s ‘Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Development’ across the curriculum. Music lessons are an integral part of the annual Senior Production, performed at Questors Theatre in Ealing, and children are encouraged to pursue individual instrument lessons to a high level. French continues to further pupils’ language grounding for senior school. Games and Swimming are weekly, and a healthy lifestyle is promoted as a positive choice and responsibility of this older age group.
A yearly residential trip enriches classroom learning, fostering the desire to overcome tricky challenges in a wider context. Fundamentally, Year 6 is the transitional year between preparatory and senior school, in which pupils mature into confident and self-reliant young adults able to use initiative, lead others and make independent decisions. Avenue House School ensures that they are absolutely ready to begin the next phase of education when they leave. And they are all sadly missed.
“The broad curriculum, together with an outstanding range of extra curricular activities, trips and visits supports learning well.”
© Independent Schools Inspectorate 2010