Junior School FAQs

Which curriculum do you follow?

We follow elements of the English National Curriculum that we then adapt to reflect our international setting and to celebrate diversity.

Our curriculum is taught through cross-curricular units of work, allowing children to explore different topics through a variety of subjects. This enables children to make connections between their learning in different subjects and provides a meaningful way in which children can apply their knowledge both in and out of school.

What is the maximum class size?

  • Year 3 to Year 6 : eight classes of 24 students

Please note that the maximum class size may be exceeded on occasion due to extenuating circumstances at the discretion of the Head of School with the support of the CEO.

Which languages do you study in the Junior School?

The core focus in the Junior School is on the essential English skills; speaking, listening, reading and writing in order to deliver high standards in all other subjects.

All children have weekly Mandarin lessons. In Years 3 and 4, we study Mandarin for 90 minutes a week building to two hours in Years 5 and 6.

We also provide a Chinese as Additional Language (CAL) programme, a daily morning session, for native and near-native speakers who meet the criteria of attending the group. The purpose of the programme is to provide children with more exposure and targeted learning opportunities in Chinese to enable them to achieve the best of their ability in the language. In CAL sessions, teachers speak mainly in Chinese and the materials are tailored to the children’s learning progress. Our CAL programme runs in two-week blocks, each of which includes learning new vocabulary, reading and writing. At the end of each block there will be a dictation/spelling test.

We encourage all students who speak a language other than English at home to continue to develop their skills in their 'mother-tongue'. We support this through a mother-tongue programme for the Junior School; this involves facilitating tuition for native speakers of French, Spanish, Urdu, Hindi and Japanese.

What outdoor learning opportunities are there?

We believe that learning occurs both inside and outside the classroom. In the Junior School, pupils experience day trips, residential visits and acts of social service.

Our outdoor education trips include:

  • Year 3 - Zoo Sleepover (1 night)
  • Year 4 - Pulau Ubin and Sentosa Trip (2 nights)
  • Year 5 - Malacca Trip (3 nights)
  • Year 6 - Sarawak Trip (4 nights)

These trips provide opportunities for children to develop essential life skills that just can’t be learned within the classroom setting.

What are the opportunities for sports?

Our excellent sporting facilities enable us to provide a range of competitive and non-competitive sport throughout the year. We teach the view that we play to win but learn to lose with good grace and humility. We participate in FOBISIA and ACSIS.

What are the opportunities within the Arts?

We are incredibly proud of our comprehensive arts programme. We have specialist teachers for Music, Drama and Art that provides enriching experiences for our students and leads to every student achieving their potential.

In Music, we have created a rich and varied curriculum that employs a very practical approach incorporating the key elements of performing, composing and listening.

Specialist teaching and facilities enhance the children’s experience of Drama in the Junior School along with regular visits from international theatre companies, theatre practitioners and opportunities for all children to perform in both intimate and large scale performances. These opportunities are further enhanced by an extensive co-curricular programme including participation in ISTA (International Schools Theatre Association) Festivals and the Trinity Guildhall Arts Awards.

Art and Design is an essential part of our broad, balanced and differentiated curriculum. It is the formation and expression of ideas through a wide range of media and materials and has a significant role to play in children’s personal growth.

How do you use technology within your school?

Students use technology to inquire, communicate and safely take risks. We have a 1:1 iPad programme in Years 5 and 6 to prepare the children for Senior School. When students move on from Tanglin, they are confident users of current technology in a range of contexts, understanding the benefits, limitations and risks associated with its use.

How do you foster a community of learning?

Fostering a learning community is no new concept to the Junior School, indeed it is central to our school’s aims and values which state that, “We value teachers who learn and learners who teach”. With this in mind, the Junior School have been redesigning our thinking around traditional classrooms and the manner in which we engage our learners.

We have a Future Learning Room to support deep collaborative learning by encouraging student and teacher interaction. The integration of technology to support students in sharing their learning with peers, both within and beyond the immediate learning space, is also vital.

How do you make sure each child fulfils their potential?

We recognise the changing needs of our students. As such, we have a personalised learning team from learning support, precision teaching booster lessons to enrichment. We strive to ensure every child is supported and challenged appropriately regardless of their academic starting points. In addition we believe in finding every child’s potential which is why we have a broad and balanced curriculum with a quality sports and arts programme.

How are you preparing children to be future citizens of the world?

Our environment facilitates a holistic approach to learning where children have a real love of learning and personal development is an underpinning principle.

We seek to nurture our children whatever their unique and individual passion and talents; constantly striving for new ways to develop their potential.

Our school values of ‘respect, responsibility and purpose’ are embraced, ensuring that children not only achieve high levels of attainment, but also develop into well-rounded, community-spirited and responsible, international young people.

Do you support with preparation for entrance exams to overseas schools?

Yes we do.

The school offers a service to enable students taking entrance tests for schools in the UK and other countries. This includes the 11+ Common Entrance exams and we also provide an exam preparation course, which runs in Term 1.

Students are given training in how to approach and complete typical exam-style questions, using a variety of answering formats, with emphasis in the first two sessions on Verbal and non-Verbal Reasoning papers. The course aims to have students ‘examination ready’ at a time of the academic year when these papers are typically administered. The cost of the course is covered by parents of students involved and is paid directly to the school.

What accreditations and awards has the Junior School received?

We are an accredited member of the Independent Association of Prep Schools (IAPS) so that we benchmark ourselves against the very best. We have also been awarded the Historical Association Silver Quality Mark (we are currently going for Gold), the Geographical Association Gold Quality Mark, and the Primary Science Gold Quality Mark.

Our most recent inspection took place in February 2016 and the result was ‘Outstanding’ in all aspects. The inspectors shared that they looked to uncover every stone to see where there were weaker aspects and that at every point all they uncovered were rainbows.

However, we don’t rest on our laurels as we believe that getting better never stops and the only way to ensure this is through continual dialogue with our school community.