Welcome from Senior Prep Head
“For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them.”― Aristotle
The Senior Prep at Broadacres Academy provides children in Grade 4 with a unique learning experience, one which sets us apart from others.
Gone are the days of ‘teaching at children’, meaning, ‘I teach, and you listen.’ Children learn best when they are deeply engaged in a learning activity, finding connections between existing knowledge and new information and making sense of how it all fits together, and in the process construct new knowledge.
Our children will be engaging in integrated learning activities within their reconfigurable learning spaces on a daily basis.
In this way, they drive their own learning, remaining curious, construct knowledge under the guidance of the teacher as a facilitator. Above all, they learn naturally, which is what children are wired to do.
Children in the Senior Prep at Broadacres Academy learn by doing and by being actively involved in the process by:
- asking questions
- engaging in project-based learning activities
- problem-solving (exploring “big questions”)
- exploring (finding connections and making sense)
- thinking critically (finding real solutions to problems)
Our teachers encourage and facilitate learning by actively engaging your child in their own learning process.
Active learning engages students in learning, using activities such as reading, writing, discussion, or problem solving. This encourages analysis, synthesis, and evaluation of knowledge creation in class.
We believe that learning is a journey of exploration,
A collaboration between learner and teacher,
Inspired by curiosity,
Guided by professional insight and commitment,
Grounded in community values,
And focused on the natural development of each child’s potential.
At Broadacres Academy we have established for ourselves what we believe to be the truth around the following fundamental questions:
- What is knowledge?
- What is the nature of children?
- How do children learn?
By thoroughly investigating these key areas and discarding traditional beliefs of what schools should be, we established our educational philosophy.
Our exceptional new facilities, currently under construction, will enhance this experience fully. The children in our care can maximise their potential as individuals as they learn in a Constructivist way.
“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I remember, involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin
At Broadacres Academy, we are well aware that the standardised model of education designed for the Industrial Revolution is outdated. It does not equip learners for the ever-changing world of the 21st Century.
We understand the nature of children and how they learn. Our approach to learning centres around the child. Our classrooms or ‘learning spaces’, as we like to call them, are dynamic and movable, allowing for flexibility and open-mindedness.
Learning is not limited to the classroom.
The beauty of our natural surrounds and the contemporary farm-like feel at our school, make outdoor learning in nature possible.
Our school is a happy, nurturing space grounded by our community values of kindness, integrity, empathy, courtesy, love for the environment and compassion.
“Learning is not the product of teaching. Learning is the product of the activity of learners.”- John Holt
Broadacres Academy delivers the curriculum in an integrated way. We use the National Curriculum (CAPS) as our framework.
We believe firstly, that integrating knowledge fits the educational paradigm of the information age better than a curriculum where knowledge is boxed into different categories or disciplines.
Secondly, an integrated curriculum is suited to the way the brain recognises and processes new information; as well as the brain’s natural ability to integrate new information with existing knowledge.
We therefore view the curriculum as “…all learning which is planned and guided by the school, whether it is carried on in groups or individually, inside or outside the school.”
Our curriculum is not simply a set of plans to be implemented, but is rather created through an active process in which planning, acting and evaluating are all commonly related and integrated into the process”
Our curriculum is guided and informed by the Curriculum Assessment Policy Statements, a national policy set out by the Department of Education (UMALUSI accredited) that states what should be included in the curricula of schools for each grade in South Africa.
Our Senior Prep offers mainstream learners smaller classes, with a maximum of 22 children per class.
With no more than three classes per grade, the environment is personal, one where each child feels that they belong.
Our small classes provide the opportunity for individual and personalised attention for each child.
From 2019, we will be offering learning support in the Senior Prep to assist children who need basic remediation. We have a Therapy Centre onsite where Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Speech Therapy and Play Therapy are provided by professional practitioners, where necessary.
Broadacres Academy is a mainstream school. We teach children in the way that they naturally learn and provide learning support where required.
This does not mean that we cater for children who may have developmental delays and other related barriers to learning and who still need the specialised environment established remedial schools offer.
Our new Senior Prep building will house a unique learning space known as a Communal Learning Area (CLA).
This will be a magnificent multi-faceted space where children can be creative through Art and Design & Technology. Here they can extend their reading, research and work on projects using technology. They can also consolidate the skills developed in the classroom, under the guidance of a skilled educator.
This is a great initiative which will integrate and enhance the learning experience beyond the confines of the classroom.
You can read more about the CLA here.
There is always time for creative activity, be it painting, drawing, singing, dancing or even playing an instrument.
These activities create a diverse, holistic curriculum in which all aspects of the child are developed.
There is a big emphasis on outdoor and play activities as the philosophy at Broadacres Academy is that children learn through play and physical activity. The emphasis on Physical Literacy links directly to the development of gross and fine motor skills which are vital for the growth of each child.
The Junior Preparatory children participate in an integrated day programme that covers a variety of ball skills, with the aim of preparing them for the definitive sports like cricket, soccer, netball and tennis.
We aim to have our multi-purpose hall built by the middle of 2019. This space, along with the swimming pool, cricket nets, tennis courts and sports field, will be used to grow and develop all the necessary sports and physical literacy skills a child needs.
When the full facilities are developed, we aim to ensure each child receives a ball skills and swimming lesson every week. The Physical Literacy programme we aim to initiate is developed to ensure all-round skills are taught during the children’s intramural time.
The extramural sports programme will focus on the traditional Preparatory School sports and will be sport specific. We believe that this will enable children to develop their sporting ability in a natural and effective way.