Herschel Preparatory School aims to provide our girls with a balanced education programme that integrates the academic with the arts and sport. All teaching is enhanced through relevant excursions and tours.
Girls are encouraged to be independent critical thinkers through the Thinking Skills programme. We encourage the development of creativity and teach them problem-solving skills.
A further important component of the programme is the development of life skills. This includes Peace Education, which is facilitated by the teachers but managed by the pupils themselves.
Excursions, such as visits to museums and the theatre, camps and field trips form an integral part of the education programme.
At Herschel Preparatory the aim is to prepare the girls not only for primary and secondary education but also to empower them with skills, which they will take into education and womanhood, enabling them to approach life with integrity, tolerance and respect for others and their environment.
In the Foundation Phase, Enrichment takes place daily with effective use of differentiated teaching in the classrooms. Girls also have weekly Thinking Skills lessons where Thinking Maps and Habits of Mind are introduced as part of the ethos of teaching and learning at Herschel. Where necessary, individual extension programmes are designed and implemented.
In the Intermediate and Senior Phase, specific teaching of Thinking Skills and Habits of Mind is continued. Due to the focus on Integrated Studies and project-based learning, opportunities arise each term for differentiation and enrichment. Enrichment days are also designed at the end of each term. During these days, pupils are engaged in a wide range of activities and workshops. These include coding, crafts, study skills, self-defence, mindfulness and relationship building in our diverse country.
The Pre-Preparatory School provides a happy, safe environment where the girls play, learn and grow at their own pace. There is constant movement and a happy buzz as the girls enjoy activities in our spacious classrooms and on our exciting playground.
Our aim is to develop the whole child and we offer a rich, developmentally appropriate curriculum to ensure that the girls exercise and grow physically, adapt and mature emotionally and learn important social skills to equip them for the future.
The Pre-Nursery Classes run an open plan classroom. This means that all the creative activities are in one classroom, while the other class houses a large fantasy corner, books, puzzles, construction toys, educational toys and games. The shared doors are open for the majority of the day and only close when the classes are engaged in more formal ring times, discussions, quiet play and story times.
Class Teachers and Assistant Teachers are available to all the children and the girls move freely between both rooms during creative activities. In this way they are supervised at all times. A wide variety of activities are provided for the children to explore. There is a play dough table, writing and drawing table, and daily, theme-related art activities.
Outdoor free play takes place on the exciting playground where the girls enjoy active and imaginative games and activities that ensure their gross motor skills are developed.
The theme-based, holistic programme includes:
• Literacy – English Home Language and the development of vocabulary and expressive language
• Afrikaans and Xhosa lessons – development of vocabulary
• Creative activities
• Development of Fine Motor skills
• Development of Gross Motor skills
• Bible stories
• Bounce Back*
* In the Pre-Nursery Classes, the children are taught to identify and recognise different emotions. The Warm Fuzzy and Cold Prickly characters are introduced and they illustrate appropriate and acceptable behaviour towards others. Children are taught that they have the power over the words they say and what appropriate actions to take should someone be unkind to them.
Together with their teachers they devise ground rules and consequences for their classroom. The Get along Gang concept is explained and introduced.
Through songs, stories and role play the concepts of self-esteem, empathy, respect, good listening, sharing, uniqueness, manners and controlling one’s impulsivity are taught in an age appropriate manner. In this manner, the girls learn to express their feelings and emotions, and their social skills are also developed.
Nursery is a wonderful year and it is a time of rapid growth and development. An interesting, nurturing and exciting environment is created to make learning fun. Activities are interdisciplinary and are designed to help each child participate and progress well. This ensures consolidation of what has been learnt in Pre-Nursery and establishes a firm foundation for Grade R.
Throughout the year the girls are introduced to many diverse themes that help facilitate their learning.
• Letterland and PALS develop phonics and literacy skills
• Mathematics develops a strong number sense
• Social and Emotional skills
• Fine Motor skills
• Gross Motor skills including ball skills
• Afrikaans and Xhosa – reinforces and builds on vocabulary learnt in Pre- Nursery
• Conflict Resolution*
This is the formal and final year in the Pre-Preparatory.
The girls wear a uniform and follow a more structured routine and a CAPS based curriculum.
The holistic, integrated approach ensures all areas are developed. The aim is not only to focus on play-based learning but to ensure school readiness for Grade One and to establish a firm foundation for all future learning.
• Mathematics using Number Sense and Mathletics
• Letterland and PALS extend what has been learnt in Nursery
• Fine Motor skills including writing and creative activities
• Social skills and Mediation*
• Bible Stories
• Music, singing and movement
• Xhosa and Afrikaans
• Gross Motor skills including ball skills
‘Children want the same things we want – to laugh, to be challenged, to be entertained and delighted.’ Dr Seuss
From Grade 1 to Grade 3, our girls are introduced to a three year integrated learning programme where they are provided with a strong academic foundation in Reading, Writing and Mathematics. We have adapted the National CAPS Curriculum to expose our girls to the concepts, skills, attitudes and values that are outlined in the curriculum. Girls are exposed to both Afrikaans and isiXhosa as a second and third language respectively.
Our Foundation Phase teachers create a warm and nurturing classroom environment to ensure all girls thrive and grow in confidence whilst being taught in small ability groups where they are extended and supported each step of the way. It is within this micro teaching setting that we are able to develop much needed critical thinking skills. In Life Skills girls learn about the world around them and are encouraged to develop attributes of kindness, empathy, respect and inclusion through various programmes.
Many opportunities are given to girls to be challenged and enriched with the introduction of IT skills, Technology, an extensive Arts and Culture Programme as well as Life Orientation. We are continuously adapting our curriculum to meet the needs of our girls and our rapidly changing world. We are committed to the continual pursuit of excellence.
“Children must be taught HOW to think, not WHAT to think.’ Margaret Mead
Our Educational Programme consists of:
• English, Afrikaans and isiXhosa
• Life Orientation
• Arts & Culture
• Technology (Grade 3 only)
• IT Skills
• Thinking Skills
• Physical Education
The Intermediate and Senior Phases at the Preparatory School follow the CAPS Curriculum. Herschel, however, teaches beyond the curriculum and emphasis is placed on the development of core skills, values and attitudes.
Thinking skills form an integral part of the curriculum and girls are encouraged and challenged to think critically and independently. All classrooms are equipped with interactive Smart Boards. iPads are compulsory for Grade 6 and 7 girls while Grade 4 and 5 girls use iPads from a shared bank. This multi-media approach takes cognizance of different learning styles and strengths and ensures that optimal learning is taking place. Creative ways of teaching and learning are constantly explored.
In Integrated Studies, the focus is on enquiry, the acquisition of skills and project-based learning. In Grades 4 and 5 this has meant that the traditional subject areas of Social Sciences and Natural Sciences have been replaced with Integrated Studies. Relevant and appropriate topics are explored in a variety of ways. The Grade 6s and 7s have retained their subject structures, but continue to work on integrated projects. This allows for effective co-operative work, collaboration and team teaching which is stimulating and rewarding for the girls as well as the teachers. This integrated approach, which also incorporates the use of digital platforms, coding, Habits of Mind and Thinking Skills makes learning and teaching relevant and meaningful.
Our Educational Programme consists of:
• English, Afrikaans, isiXhosa
• Natural Sciences
• Social Sciences
• Economic and Management Sciences in Grade 7
• Arts and Culture
• IT Skills
• Life Orientation
• Thinking Skills
• Integrated Studies
Herschel offers state-of-the-art ICT (Information and Communication Technology) facilities that enable the pupils and staff to maximise their learning experience through the incorporation of ICT into curriculum areas.
An extensive network, consisting of physical fibre and wireless parts, is installed across the campus and allows traditional and mobile devices, such as laptops, tablets and phones, to seamlessly connect to core servers and the Internet. A dedicated connection to the Internet provides reliable and fast access to online services.
Using a personal mobile device adds educational value by encouraging collaborative learning, fostering creativity, developing critical thinking and enabling pupils to control their own learning. Herschel has selected the iPad as the preferred tablet device and each grade 6 and 7 pupil is expected to have an iPad loaded with prescribed apps.
Herschel holds licenses and membership for many of the top productivity and educational packages. Herschel is a Google Apps for Education school and thus makes use of Google’s cloud service to produce and administer content.
HEAD OF PREPARATORY
Mrs B Heidmann, HDE (CTCE)
Mrs L Martin, TTHD (JCE)
HEAD OF DEPARTMENT INTERMEDIATE / SENIOR PHASE
Mrs A Baikoff, B Prim Ed (UCT), BEd (UNISA)
INTERMEDIATE / SENIOR PREPARATORY STAFF
Ms A Ally
Mrs G Barrett, BA (HDE) (UN)
Ms K Bosch, BEd (UKZN)
Mrs S Blake, HDE (CTCE)
Mrs S Bräsler, BMus Ed (UFS) BMus Hons (UCT), LTCL
Mrs S Centurier-Harris, B Ed (CTCE) ACE Special needs (UNISA)
Ms P Conrads, BMus (UKZN) BMus Hons (Ed) MMus (Performance) (UKZN)
Ms L Cowie, HDE (ECE), Dip. Ed Management (RAU)
Ms A Dawson, BEd (Varsity College)
Mrs A Foale-Price (Art Teacher)
Ms S Gobey, Assistant Teacher, Dip ECD
Mrs J Holtzhausen, BA (UNISA) and PGCE (UNISA)
Mrs B Julies, Assistant Teacher, Technology
Mrs R La Grange BMus (UCT), PGCE (UCT)
Ms L Karsten, Dip ECD (CCT), BEd (UNISA)
Mrs M Laubscher, Bsc (US) and HDE (UCT)
Ms Mutara, Learnership
Rev L Lavarello-Smith, Chaplain
Mrs A Lewis, B Prim Ed (UCT)
Mrs C Moritz, BA (US), PGCE (UNISA)
Mrs A Mozley, HDE (CTCE)
Ms M Roebert, B Home Economics (Ed) HDE (US)
Ms C Schreuder, BSocSci (UCT) PGCE (UCT)
Ms A van der Vywer, BMus (US)
Ms P Vundla, DipEd (Cape Town College), HDE (CTCE)
Mrs L van Eyssen, HDE Foundation Phase (CTCE)
HEAD OF DEPARTMENT FOUNDATION PHASE
Miss Z Khan, HDE (CTCE)
FOUNDATION PHASE STAFF
Ms N Barends, Assistant Teacher
Mrs T Davids, Assistant Teacher
Ms Z Mrasi, Assistant Teacher, DIP ECD
Mrs K Parker-Muzzell, BSocSci (Psych) (UCT) BA (SS) Hons (Psych) PGCE (UNISA)
Mrs J R Nel, DE (UPE), Dip Sp Ed (Remedial) (UNISA)
Mrs K Rutgers, HDE (CTCE), REM ED (RAU)
Mrs L Thebus, HDE (CTCE)
HEAD OF DEPARTMENT PRE-PREPARATORY
Mrs C Kieffer-Walker, BEd Honours (CPUT)
Mrs J Bearne, HDE Foundation Phase (CTCE), FDE Pre-Primary (UK)
Mrs C Brittain, BSS, (UCT) Hon, PGCE (UNISA)
Mrs T Brogan, BA (Hons) (UCT), HDE Pre-Primary (CTCE)
Mrs T Davids, Assistant Teacher, Dip ECD
Mrs L Fani, Assistant Teacher, Dip ECD
Mrs B Gabriel, BEd (CPUT)
Mrs V Johannes, Certificate in ECD, Bed Foundation Phase UNISA
Ms A Malefane Assistant Teacher, ABET (UNISA)
Ms M Martin, Assistant Teacher, Dip ECD
Mrs T Maynard, HDE Junior & Pre-Primary
Ms K Meyer, BEd ECD, Foundation Phase (UNISA)
Ms J Mwela, Assistant Teacher
Ms A Sass, Assistant Teacher, Dip ECD
Ms N Young, BEd ECD & FP (UNISA)
Mrs T Aubin, B Prim Ed (UCT), BEd Hons (Inclusive Education) (UJ)
Mrs R Stakemire, Dip Ed FP (CTCE), FDE (CTCE), Special Needs (UNISA)
Ms L Steenkamp, BA (Social Work), MA (Child and Family Studies)
Mrs A Claasen, Admissions and Public Relations
Mrs L Gibb, Receptionist/Secretary
Mrs C Guercio, PA to the Head of Preparatory
Mrs C Levitt, Pre-Preparatory Secretary
Mr R Rhoda, ICT Network Technician
Ms Z Mbenya, ICT Technician