Inspiring a Life of Significance

“Every child deserves the right to leave her own unique mark on the world”


Upper Junior School

Upper Junior Curriculum: Grades 4 – 7

After their grounding in St Margaret’s, the girls migrate up the hill into the Upper Junior School. Teaching and learning in the separate subjects is complemented by our commitment to current National and Global initiatives and programmes that enhance learning. Click to view these programmes.

Subjects in the Upper Junior School:

Mathematics: In the Upper Junior School we continue to build on the solid foundation and passion that has been developed for Mathematics in St Margaret’s. We follow the Pearson Abacus scheme, from the United Kingdom, until Grade 6. In Grade 7 we consolidate all the concepts that have been taught and ensure that the girls are ready for Senior School and that they feel confident in applying mathematical skills within the subject and to daily situations.

English: English is taught as a Home Language and our teachers are passionate in their approach. The language lessons are alive and dynamic, and embrace change, yet the basics of reading, writing, and language usage are emphasised and taught in context. Our English classes are proudly South African and celebrate our home-grown authors and poets, yet we also expose our girls to the classics and other celebrated writers. Reading is further promoted by the online reading programme, Reading Eggspress.

Afrikaans (First Additional Language): Afrikaans is spoken across a number of different South African societies and, by learning this language rich in literature and culture, our pupils gain a deeper understanding of our history and people, and develop the skills, knowledge, competencies, and attitudes to function in a diverse society.

isiZulu (First Additional Language): isZulu is one of a number of prominent languages in South Africa, and learning IsiZulu at Roedean School is a way of understanding diverse cultures and promoting intercultural interactions. We strive to create spontaneous classroom interaction in our daily practice that integrates language, culture, and our girls´ interests, so that they can communicate successfully in different contexts using the language.

Social Sciences: The study of Social Sciences in the Junior School is deeply committed to an Afrocentric curriculum and lays the foundations for our pupils to navigate the world and build an awareness of self, other, and the environment. Teaching and learning focus on the development of the specialized languages and skills required for History and Geography, and using Thinking Skills strategies, such as Visible Thinking Routines, Thinking Maps and de Bono’s Thinking Hats.

Natural Sciences: The study of Natural Sciences forms the basis for applied science subjects and focuses on the study of the universe and the rules of nature. The curriculum is broken down into biology, chemistry, and physics. In the Junior School, the focus in all topics is on the scientific skills of description, prediction, and understanding, based on evidence from observation and experimentation.

Physical Education lessons are an important part of the day and our dynamic Sports’ Department ensures the girls experience many opportunities to grow their personal fitness and hone their talents by participating in a range of individual and team sports. Click to view separate Sport in the Junior School.

Pastoral Care, Life Skills and Leadership: Roedean is committed to the personal, emotional, and social wellbeing of our community – pupils, teachers, and parents. We encourage the girls to become more conscious of their physical and emotional wellbeing, their social responsibility, and their personal goals and ideals.

Our Pastoral Care Strategy is based on the Conscious Discipline philosophy. Emotional and behavioural regulation and emotional knowledge and expression are fundamental to emotional development.

Mindfulness training helps our girls to understand their feelings, reduce stress, strengthen focus and attention span, and support social and emotional growth.

We have also implemented the Steerglobal AS Tracking tool, which allows us to monitor the mental well-being of our girls, to identify girls who are at emotional risk, and to intervene and provide the necessary support as early as possible.

Our curriculum includes a strong commitment to Social Justice and Diversity. The optimal time to change mindsets, attitudes, and behaviour is in the early years of a child’s development. The Upper Junior School works with a highly regarded diversity specialist who has designed our Diversity and Social Justice Curriculum. The programme includes unconscious bias coaching and training for pupils and staff members, and it complements the Foundation Phase Think Equal Programme.

Assessment: Continuous assessments are part of a process of gathering information to determine each girl’s academic journey. Throughout the year, the girls are exposed to both formative and summative assessment tasks.