The Foundation Phase at Victoria Primary caters for girls from Grade 00 to Grade 3 with approximately 24 girls in each class. The Foundation Phase teaching team consists of 9 teachers, 3 student teachers and 3 additional support staff for the Pre-Primary classes. Together, the staff are a good blend of youthful energy and well-earned experience. Our teachers are lifelong learners who choose to continuously develop their knowledge and skills.
In our classrooms we ensure that learning is developmentally appropriate and CAPS compliant. Our aim is to allow as much time for discovery and practical learning as possible. In the Pre-Primary all learning is experiential. We facilitate the holistic development of each child – emotional, social, physical, intellectual, creative and musical development are equally important.
In addition to the academic aspects of the curriculum, the girls all participate in singing, percussion, art lessons and a varied sporting programme. Gross motor and physical skills are essential for successful classroom learning and all our girls benefit from taking part in the Physi-Fun Programme on a weekly basis. During the summer months the girls attend swimming lessons in our school swimming pool. In the Pre-Primary these lessons focus on water safety. In Grades 1 to 3 the girls start learning the basics of swimming and they also enjoy a weekly tennis lesson with a professional coach.
In the Foundation Phase our aim is for each girl to learn and grow at her own pace and according to appropriate developmental milestones. The importance of perceptual development as an essential precursor to formal learning is strategically and systematically highlighted in the Pre-Primary. These girls are provided with ample opportunity to learn through independent exploration and play. Every girl is encouraged to reach her full potential in all aspects of school life. We also strive to prepare our girls for the modern and technological world in which they live and accordingly Grades 2 and 3 spend time in our computer centre and use Chromebooks in the classroom when relevant and appropriate.
We value books and reading and in the Pre-Primary we lay a good foundation for phonological awareness so that in Grade 1 the girls are ready to learn to read. We are very privileged to have a very well-resourced reading scheme which allows each child sufficient time to develop their reading skills at every level. There is a wide variety of reading material available which includes both fictional and non-fictional texts covering a variety of topics. All girls in the Foundation Phase also enjoy regular visits to the school library.
Mathematical teaching and the development of numeracy skills is a priority. The Number Sense Programme is followed to ensure each girl is able to grow and develop her understanding of all aspects of Mathematics. Teaching and learning are facilitated, supported and developed with problem solving, experiential learning and the use of concrete apparatus. On a daily basis each girl will learn in a small group and interact with her teacher and have the opportunity to engage in activities involving shape, geometry and measurement.
We teach both isiXhosa and Afrikaans at First Additional Language level in the Foundation Phase. The girls are encouraged to be multilingual and to show respect for different languages and cultures. Social communication with each other in different languages is welcomed and encouraged. Once they enter the Intermediate Phase the girls choose which First Additional Language they would prefer to learn.
Life Skills covers a variety of topics which are personally relevant, informative and of interest to the girls. Wherever possible outings are arranged to enhance classroom learning.
For Grades 1 to 3 extra-curricular activities include; dance, swimming, tennis, netball, hockey, karate and junior choir (Grades 2 and 3 only). Participation in the extra-mural programme is compulsory; however, from Grade 2 the girls are allowed to select the activities they wish to attend.
Our girls leave the Foundation Phase confident in their knowledge and abilities and most importantly, happy!
“No one should teach who is not in love with teaching.” Margaret E. Sangster