Dainfern College Senior Preparatory Phase
True to the College’s motto, “A world of education… an education for the world”, we strive at all times to keep our education relevant in global terms. The focus is on guiding our pupils to acquire life-long skills in preparation for a rapidly changing world with uncertain future requirements. Information and content are the vehicles through which we strive to achieve this.
Pupils encounter a more formalised education environment as they move into the Senior Preparatory phase of Grades 4 through to 7. This more formal approach assists in creating a healthy work ethic in our pupils. We hope to establish a life-long curiosity in our pupils for the world around them and a passion for learning in the Senior Preparatory phase.
The academic endeavours of this phase are overseen by the SP Head of Academics, Mr Brendan Quinn.
The medium of instruction in this phase is English. This subject falls under the guidance of Ms Margie Pettit. Pupils are encouraged to read extensively in this subject. Effective oral and written communication is facilitated and developed through varied activities.
We also offer the additional South African languages of isiZulu and Afrikaans in Grades 4 and 5. Pupils get to choose between Afrikaans and isiZulu from the start of their Grade 6 year in order to cover their choice of additional language in greater depth. The methodology used in the offer of these languages has a strong oral and aural bias. Afrikaans is headed by Mrs Janine Clements and isiZulu by Mrs Penny Kunene.
A loose, constructivist philosophy underpins our Mathematics curriculum. Pupils are exposed to mathematical problems that encourage the development of mathematical logic through this methodology. The arithmetic dimension of this subject is not neglected as it shares a focus with our problem-solving approach to Mathematics. Mr Kidi Ramollo champions this subject in the role of Head of Learning for Mathematics.
The disciplines of History and Geography are taught under the umbrella subject of Social Sciences. Pupils are encouraged to develop various related skills in this subject through appropriate themes, which may be integrated when possible. The Social Sciences in the Senior Preparatory phase are headed by Ms Shamla Bennideen.
Elements of Science and Biology are taught under the umbrella subject of Natural Science. There is a strong bias of pupils being engaged in practical work in this learning area. Natural Science is a subject enthusiastically headed up by Ms Nikki Candy.
In an additional attempt to keep our curriculum offer current, we offer the subjects of Information Computer Technology (ICT) and Design & Technology (D&T) under the umbrella subject title of Technology. These two learning areas are approached independently, taught by different teachers. However, integration of these subjects is encouraged where appropriate. Pupils get to apply various computer programs in ICT, often integrated with what they are exposed to in other subjects. Our pupils also explore various technical systems and a design process in D&T. Technology is headed up by Mr Anthony Egbers.
We do not neglect the Arts in our curriculum offer. Pupils are encouraged to develop their inner, creative self through Visual Art and Music. Various genres are explored in Visual Art from pencil sketches, painting and ceramic work in one-hour periods once a week. Visual Art is the responsibility of Mrs Sue Vermaas. Pupils get exposed to marimbas and djembe drums in their Class Music periods. There is also a focus on general music appreciation and rudimentary music literacy in Grades 4 and 5 through recorder performances in Class Music periods. The Arts & Culture Learning Area is under the guidance of Mrs Patti van der Ploeg.
In the Life Orientation subject pupils discuss social and personal issues in the Life Skills lessons and get to participate in physical activities in Physical Education periods. This includes the learning of basic skills for various sports. Mrs Fiona Page, the Head of Life Orientation in the Senior Preparatory phase, is also this phase’s counsellor.
We are a happy school, committed to positive educational experiences in the interests of productive, educational rigour.