Each grade at Springvale has a passionate class teacher, and as the children move up the school, teaching becomes more specialised. Double streaming begins in Grade 6 where there is a new intake.
We provide an all-encompassing academic curriculum where your children learn a huge range of subjects to facilitate them in finding their strengths.
Our Library is an integral part of our school and has a huge selection of books for all reading schemes. In Grade 1 and 2, the children read to an adult 3 times a day- creating a quiet confidence.
The Computer Department is also well equipped, we have 30 Dell computers and 40 iPads. Basic computer skills are introduced but our primary focus is on Coding and Programming across all the grades in the school.
Children are prepared for the entrance examinations to the Independent Schools but have the first option to stay on at our beautiful group of schools at Peterhouse Boys and Girls.
What’s new, different and wonderful about Singapore Math?
Firstly, the Singapore Math approach revolves around several key strategies: 1) Thinking about numbers, 2) Understanding place value, 3) Finding part-whole relationships in math, and 4) Breaking down or decomposing number into friendly numbers, ones that are easier with to work. (The four operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division)). Numbers such as 10, 100 and 1000 are especially friendly, so we try as often as possible to work with multiples of these numbers.
Secondly, Singapore Math provides us with logical, and often time-saving approaches, to math that help us make sense out of problems that may at first seem daunting. Mental math computation is a big component of Singapore Math (memorizing number facts to start with, but also calculating complex problems in our heads). Model drawing is an approach to working out word problems where we identify key information in the problem, draw a basic model that incorporates something called a unit bar, and label the model with information as we calculate the solution to the problem.
Thirdly, Singapore Math teaches pupils an understanding of subject matter in stages – beginning with the concrete (using manipulatives such as counters, number disks, place value charts, etc). then moving to the pictorial (solving problems where pictures represent numbers), and finally working in the abstract (where numbers symbolize value). Along the way, pupils learn various ways to work with numbers to help build conceptual understanding, and eventually they master the traditional methods and algorithms.
At Springvale House we have an enriching cultural department, from music to art and everything in between. Our children can explore it all, guided by passionate, qualified professionals.
The National Allied Arts Competition showcases four sections; Art, Music, Dramatic Performance and Creative Writing. The school enters pupils into all these sections and has had very encouraging results.
Individual pupils are offered the opportunity to learn to play a wide variety of musical instruments. Musical highlights during the year include the Eisteddfod, Harare Junior School Choir Competition, Mid-year Music Concert, Third Term Carol Concert and The Marondera Schools’ Carol Concert.
Every pupil is given the opportunity to participate in a dramatic production. In the first term, the Grades 3, 4 and 5 put on a performance, with the Grades 6 and 7 doing an end of year production. Grades 1 and 2 do various interpretations of the Nativity at the end of the third term. During the term, each class has to present a small ‘skit’ for Thursday Assembly. These take the form of Biblical stories, poetry, singing, story telling, or anything else of interest that they might be learning about in class.
Early intervention and educational support at Springvale House begins in Grade 1 and Grade 2 with SEARCH & TEACH assessments being carried out by the Centre therapists, Robyn Durham and Sara Pilkington. These results indicate which pupils need to proceed to the TEACH program and which pupils are directed to further therapy such as speech therapy and occupational therapy.
Each pupil needing TEACH will have three or four 30 minute sessions a week, and these will be arranged by the therapists. If a pupil is identified as needing occupational therapy, they will have one or two 30 minute, one-on-one sessions with the occupational therapist, Sharn Muir, on Tuesdays and/or Thursdays, usually in the afternoons. If a pupil is identified as needing speech therapy, they with have one 30 minute, one-on-one session with the speech therapist, Nyasha Chakanetsa on Thursday afternoons.
This system extends to the rest of the school from Grade Three onwards, where if a pupil is struggling in class, the class teacher will fill out an observation form and discuss with the ALPHA Centre staff. The Centre will then asses if the pupil needs an educational psychologist’s assessment, occupational therapy, and/or speech therapy, or allowances within the classroom. These will be discussed among the teacher, ALPHA center staff and Paul Martin, and the parents will be informed.
The Centre staff are trained in NILD therapy and once assessed by an educational psychologist or the Woodcock Johnson test (administered by the Centre), pupils are helped with a program tailor-made for their specific needs; ranging from allowances in class to NILD sessions in the afternoon.
The SVH ALPHA Center also offers extra lessons with Val Brous in maths, spelling, reading, comprehension and handwriting. Within the SVH ALPHA Centre, we also have staff trained in RX Maths, RX Reading, RX Writing and the Irlens eye test, which identifies if a pupil needs a coloured overlay or coloured lens glasses to help with reading.