Year 6 - Expanding Horizons
Perhaps a lesser known fact about Old Palace is that the Senior School starts in Year 6 rather than the more traditional point of entry in Year 7.
Whilst many girls do join us in Year 7, our Year 6 consists of both current students from Old Palace Preparatory School and a significant number of new pupils who are looking to experience a more challenging and stimulating curriculum. Girls are fortunate enough to enjoy their own, dedicated area of the Senior School with separate Year 6 classrooms and their own leafy courtyard in which to play at break time. Yet they share all the facilities of the Senior School, including the on-site swimming pool, where all pupils have weekly swimming lessons.
Whilst we maintain a close-knit community within Year 6 by teaching students in their own classrooms, we challenge and stimulate them by using specialised areas such as the Science and Language Laboratories. For girls who are eager to learn, this provides an exceptional opportunity to take lessons from subject specialists at an early age. In fact, we often find that this inspires a passion for Science and Languages which continues throughout their Senior School years. Other new subjects, such as Latin, are also studied.
Throughout Year 6, students are prepared for the 11+ examinations and, of course, our own, Old Palace entrance examination. They also enjoy a wide variety of lunchtime and after-school clubs as well as the opportunity to take part in Senor School productions, concerts and choirs (including concerts at Croydon Minster). Girls are introduced to water polo, tennis, dance, hockey and netball and are given the opportunity to try out for teams and play competitively.
Taking part in the Arts Award is a very popular activity with our Year 6 students, who relish the challenge of creating their own plays and presenting them to their parents at the end of the year. Another highlight, and one which is very much looked forward to, is the annual residential trip to the Isle of Wight.
Expanding the horizons of our students in this way ensures that Year 6 at Old Palace becomes a valuable and rewarding experience. Most importantly, it helps build confidence which plays a significant part in reducing any anxiety a girl may experience when transferring from Year 6 to Year 7. Indeed feedback from pupils and parents has been overwhelmingly positive and we are immensely proud of all that our Year 6 girls achieve.