Our curriculum follows the framework of the Charlotte Mason’s educational philosophy, which is inherently rich and broad, likened by her to an ‘abundant feast for the mind’. We place a strong emphasis on the foundations of literacy and numeracy, so place these first. Our curriculum includes the following subject areas:
- English – literacy which includes:
- phonics and reading
- read-aloud times out of delightful living books
- tales & fables/myths & legends
- Maths – using mainly the well-known and accredited Singapore mathematics and moving over to the Cambridge mathematics in Grade 7
- Bible – reading, studying, and discussing
- History – (both local and global) learnt in large part through Living Books and narration
- Geography – which includes practical map work, nations, geology, astronomy, and familiarizing with the earth as a whole
- Science – includes General Science, Chemistry, Physics, hands on experiments and nature walks
- Biology – includes Zoology, Botany, and Human Anatomy
- Enrichment studies – including Composer study, Hymn study, Picture study (art), and Habit training
- Practical Art
- Class Music
- Dance – including Ballet, Modern dance, Hip-hop, and Cultural dances
- Physical education and sport
- Regular educational trips
- Grade 10-12 – ending with Cambridge IGCSE and AS examinations and matriculation certificate
“Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try.”
‘Disciplinary’ subject lessons are alternated with ‘inspirational’ lessons, helping sustain the children’s interest and concentration. Wherever possible, learning happens through the reading of excellent literature rather than merely through textbooks.
A narrowed curriculum could fail to cultivate the diverse range of gifts or aptitudes amongst our students or undermine the love of learning.
The curriculum content is sourced from Charlotte Mason experts in the UK but contextualised for the South African setting. Our aim is to ensure that the children reach, and in most cases, surpass the national curriculum (NCS and CAPS) requirements for numeracy, literacy and languages.
One of the educational tools advocated by Charlotte Mason is narration, initially verbal (and sometimes drawn), and then written in the higher grades. This is where the children are asked to take turns ‘telling back’ in detail what they have just heard read to them. Teachers who employ the regular use of narration in the class or home-school attest to its value on a number of levels.
The practice of narration helps:
- develop the ability to pay close attention
- make the subject content ‘stick’ as it is verbalised
- stimulate a greater curiosity around the core ideas as they are discussed
- develop the ability to order thoughts and clearly articulate them to others
- develop the ability to engage fruitfully in group discussion, listening carefully to others and waiting to take your turn
Needless to say, these are extremely important life-skills to acquire.
We explore the wonder of God in every subject and draw the child’s attention to gaze upon the beauty of Christ.
We actively encourage our children to think out of the box and to live authentic lives. We believe that our commitment to producing authentic young adults, defines us as a great school.
Gracehill College is also characterized by a blend of traditional and new ideas: we wear uniform, but make comfort a priority; we use technology, but often take learning outdoors; we play basketball and love ballet; we value individuals and serve the community.
We take pride in working to a high standard because it is only through this process of engaging with an authentic challenge that we can expect any transformation of the heart and mind to take place. We believe that now more than ever, young people need clear expectations with consistent boundaries. This needs to be defined by consequences and should the mark be overstepped, committed support should be given in order for them to grow into successful, content individuals.
We value the partnership of parents and the community. These relationships, together with our caring staff, ensure that our students and the community all have a sense of belonging. This is called the Gracehill family.
Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself. We, at Gracehill College, believe that “every good gift of knowledge and insight come from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” James 1:17.
We trust in our Heavenly Father to nurture and equip our children, through a thoroughly researched curriculum and feast of ideas. We strive for an education that is far deeper than mere exams and tests – an education that impacts lives and echoes into eternity
School Terms 2022
19 January – 25 March 2022
5 April – 24 June 2022
19 July – 30 September 2022
11 October – 14 December 2022