Secondary

11-16 YEARS OLD

Following on from River House Primary, our Secondary School continues to provide a dynamic, balanced and engaging curriculum but moves things up a level. Starting in Class 7 students build on their prior learning at Primary and begin their Cambridge programmes proper. These are tailored to suit the River House values of Live:Love:Learn.

River House Secondary combines an emphasis on an in-depth mastery of academic subjects like Maths, English, Science, Humanities and Languages with the development of the skills needed for a happy and successful future. We value the development of both a deep subject knowledge as well as encouraging students to develop higher order thinking skills such as; learning from mistakes; positivity; self-awareness; team-work; research; extended writing; presentation skills; critical thinking and problem solving. These are transferable skills that last a lifetime, and are a key component of accelerating learning, making it enjoyable and rewarding.

Our academic subjects run alongside a strong co-curriculum in Sport, Music, Food, Creative and Performing Arts, Humanities and Technology and then a more student-led experience in our Personal Project curriculum. The Personal Project gives students the chance to choose a topic and an interest that they wish to investigate and pursue outside of their normal classroom practice. It is a real-world enterprise within a global context, with the intention of allowing students to explore parts of themselves, their learning and their role as global citizens. They have complete freedom to choose to explore topics as diverse as sustainable living, the digital world, food and nutrition, an environmental study, charity work, musical performance, volunteering, fashion or healthy lifestyles. Every student is individually mentored throughout their project and internally assessed at its conclusion.

The River House Secondary experience combines to enable all students to develop the five attributes of the Cambridge Learner Profile: confidence; responsibility; reflection; innovation and engagement. They are joined in this by a truly global community of almost 1 million learners at 10,000 schools in 160 countries.

In Class 11, normally aged 16, our students sit externally assessed, international exams with Cambridge. Most students will take up to 5 IGCSEs in Maths, English, Science, a Modern Foreign Language, Global Perspectives and Art. 

Students know that these Cambridge qualifications are globally recognised, accepted by universities and employers in their home countries and around the world. A Cambridge qualification comes with an impressive reputation, and will retain its value for a lifetime of education and employment.

We organise the Cambridge Secondary Mathematics curriculum in six content areas or ‘strands’:

  • Number
  • Algebra
  • Geometry
  • Measure
  • Handling data
  • Problem solving

These first five content areas are underpinned by the sixth: problem solving, which provides a structure for applying mathematical skills. Mental strategies are also a key part of the Number content. This curriculum framework focuses on principles, patterns, systems, functions and relationships so that learners can apply their mathematical knowledge and develop a holistic understanding of the subject. 

The Cambridge Lower Secondary Mathematics curriculum framework provides a solid foundation for Cambridge IGCSE.

An essential subject for all learners, Cambridge IGCSE Mathematics encourages the development of mathematical knowledge as a key life skill, and as a strong basis for more advanced study. The syllabus aims to build learners’ confidence by helping them develop competence and fluency with mathematical concepts, methods and skills, as well as a feel for numbers, patterns and relationships. The syllabus also places a strong emphasis on solving problems and presenting and interpreting results. Learners also gain an understanding of how to communicate and reason using mathematical concepts.

Our English Language courses are designed for learners whose first language is English.
The course enables learners to:

  • develop the ability to communicate clearly, accurately and effectively when speaking and writing
  • use a wide range of vocabulary, and the correct grammar, spelling and punctuation
  • develop a personal style and an awareness of the audience being addressed

Learners are also encouraged to read widely, both for their own enjoyment and to further their awareness of the ways in which English can be used. Cambridge IGCSE First Language English also develops more general analysis and communication skills such as inference, and the ability to order facts and present opinions effectively.

The study of English offers students the opportunity to respond with understanding to a rich array of reading texts during the course as a whole. Students will use these texts to inform and inspire their own writing, and write in a range of text types for different purposes and audiences. Students will develop both their speaking and their listening skills, delivering a presentation, and responding to questions and engaging in conversations. They are also encouraged to become appreciative and critical readers, writers, speakers and listeners.

Our aims are to enable students to: 

  • read a wide range of texts, fluently and with good understanding, enjoying and appreciating a variety of language 
  • read critically, and use knowledge gained from wide reading to inform and improve their own writing 
  • write accurately and effectively, using Standard English appropriately 
  • work with information and with ideas in language by developing skills of evaluation, analysis, use and inference 
  • listen to, understand, and use spoken language effectively
  • acquire and apply a wide vocabulary alongside a knowledge and understanding of grammatical terminology and linguistic conventions

Children are naturally curious and science supports the development of a child’s curiosity, helping them to investigate problems, learn more about the world around them and understand and use scientific explanations for a wide range of phenomena.

Scientific enquiry is about considering ideas, evaluating evidence, planning investigative work and recording and analysing data. The Scientific enquiry objectives underpin Biology, Chemistry and Physics, which are focused on developing confidence and interest in scientific knowledge, including environmental awareness and history of science.

Students develop research, collaboration and creative skills that will help with many aspects of their future learning and development. The course supports progression to a wide range of science subjects at Cambridge Upper Secondary.

Cambridge IGCSE Combined Sciences gives learners the opportunity to study Biology, Chemistry and Physics, each covered in separate syllabus sections. It is a single award qualification, earning one grade. Learners gain an understanding of the basic principles of each subject through a mix of theoretical and practical studies, while also developing an understanding of the scientific skills essential for further study. 

They learn how science is studied and practised, and become aware that the results of scientific research can have both good and bad effects on individuals, communities and the environment. As well as focusing on the individual sciences, the syllabus helps learners to understand the technological world in which they live, and take an informed interest in science and scientific developments.

Biology 

  • Characteristics of living organisms 
  • Cells 
  • Biological molecules 
  • Enzymes 
  • Plant nutrition 
  • Animal nutrition 
  • Transport 
  • Gas exchange and respiration 
  • Coordination and response 
  • Reproduction 
  • Organisms and their environment 
  • Human influences on ecosystems 

Chemistry 

  • The particulate nature of matter
  • Experimental techniques
  • Atoms, elements and compounds
  • Stoichiometry
  • Electricity and chemistry
  • Energy changes in chemical reactions
  • Chemical reactions
  • Acids, bases and salts
  • The Periodic Table
  • Metals
  • Air and water
  • Organic chemistry 

Physics 

  • Motion
  • Work, energy and power
  • Thermal physics
  • Properties of waves, including light and sound
  • Electrical quantities
  • Electric circuits

This course is designed for students who are learning French as a foreign language. The aim is to develop an ability to use the language effectively for practical communication. The course is based on the linked language skills of listening, reading, speaking and writing, and these are built on as learners progress through their studies.

Our French curriculum also aims to offer insights into the culture of countries where French is spoken, thus encouraging positive attitudes towards language learning and towards speakers of other languages.

The subject content is organised in five broad topic areas. These provide contexts for the acquisition of vocabulary and the study of grammar and structures. The study of these topic areas enables students to gain an insight into countries and communities where French is spoken. The five topic areas are:

  1. Everyday activities 
  2. Personal and social life 
  3. The world around us 
  4. The world of work 
  5. The international world 

The syllabus gives students opportunities to develop and apply a wide range of foreign language skills. Students will be expected to read and understand a variety of written and spoken texts on familiar topics as well as demonstrate understanding of the main ideas, opinions and attitudes, select and extract relevant details and deduce the meaning of occasional unknown words from context. They will also have opportunities to write in French on familiar, everyday topics, and to speak the language by taking part in everyday conversations.

In Classes 7, 8 and 9 GP is made up of a series of Challenges. There are six Challenges a year. We integrate the Challenges into our existing teaching and allow students to take the lead on the choice of topics.

Each Challenge is six hours long, subdivided into a range of activities, and covers a range of skills. The skills are taught through a wide range of topics using a personal, local and global perspective. These topics are the same as the Cambridge IGCSE syllabus, allowing us to develop and embed cross-curricular skills at an earlier age. Teachers help students to look at a variety of global issues or topics that give a range of contexts.

Disease and health Migration Belief systems
Conflict and peace Demographic change Sustainability
Poverty and inequality Employment Biodiversity and ecosystem loss
Law and criminality Education for all Sport and recreation
Tradition, culture and identity Fuel and energy Family
Water, food and agriculture Globalisation Changing communities
Trade and aid Transport and infrastructure Humans and other species
Human rights Language and communication Digital world

Meeting government ministers, organising a local river clean-up project and writing to the United Nations about climate change are just some of the activities learners are pursuing through Cambridge IGCSE Global Perspectives courses. 

GP is a groundbreaking and stimulating course that stretches across traditional subject boundaries and develops transferable skills. It is both cross-curricular and skills-based and taps into the way learners of today enjoy learning, including team-work, presentations, projects, and working with other learners around the world. The emphasis is on developing the ability to think critically about a range of global issues where there is always more than one point of view.

Art & Design gives learners a platform to express themselves, sparking imagination, creativity and developing transferable skills. Students explore and push boundaries to become reflective, critical and decisive thinkers. They learn how to articulate personal responses to their experiences.

Students develop creative skills that will help with many aspects of their future learning and development. They will:

  • learn to see themselves as artists and become increasingly reflective and independent
  • develop the skills needed to express creative ideas and to communicate visually
  • understand their place and the place of others in a creative, innovative and interconnected world.

This course supports progression to many other creative subjects in Classe 10 and 11.

The Cambridge IGCSE Art & Design syllabus aims to encourage a personal response by stimulating imagination, sensitivity, conceptual thinking, powers of observation and analytical ability. Learners gain confidence and enthusiasm as they develop technical skills in two and three dimensional form and composition, and are able to identify and solve problems in visual and tactile forms. They also learn how to develop ideas from initial attempts to final solutions. An ideal foundation for further study, Cambridge IGCSE Art & Design also develops a greater awareness of the role played by the visual arts in society and in history, broadening cultural horizons and individual experience.

Introduction

A key vision at River House Academy is that all Secondary students undertake a personal project. This is a year-long piece of significant work, based around a topic chosen by the student, to develop each student’s ability to manage responsibility for their own learning.

The project is allocated 1 single or double lesson a week and is then assessed at its natural conclusion through a demonstration and presentation to staff and peers. Students should think carefully about the topic that they choose which should be something that they are personally interested in and passionate about. Topics will therefore vary widely and can be drawn from almost any area of interest.

Much of the work for Personal Project will take place in the student’s own time outside of lessons. It should allow students to develop a set of skills like critical thinking, problem solving and time-management, skills that are not normally taught in ‘normal’ lessons.

The Personal Project should support our students to become curious, confident, responsible, innovative, reflective and resilient learners. We believe that this is a desirable set of skills  which will serve them well in the workplace and in life.

Essential Skills

The Personal Project will help all students to develop the following skills for life:

  • 1.Intrapersonal
  • self-motivation and self-reflection
  • seeking feedback
  • setting challenging goals
    flexibility
  • managing stress
  • time-management 
  1. Interpersonal
  • positive relationships
  • active listening
  • empathy
  • communication
  • teamwork
  • flexibility and compromise
  1. Enquiry
  • gathering and using data
  • analysis of fact vs opinion
  • planning and decision making
  • reviewing progress 
  1. 21st Century
  • collaboration
  • using technology
  • critical thinking
  • assessing environmental impact

Mentoring

Students will be mentored by their teacher throughout the process to help them remain focused on achieving their project. Where possible this should also be supported and encouraged by Parents, peers and others in the community; students should look for help wherever they can find it.

Lessons will focus on discussing progress against agreed deadlines, target setting, guidance and encouragement. Any discussions should be recorded by the student in writing so that there is a record of positive action as well as clear assessment criteria.

Successful students normally begin their project as early as possible with careful preparation and planning as well as keeping written records of their progress.

Assessment

Success in the Personal Project takes many forms. ‘Completing’ a project is not the main goal; the learning journey (process rather than product) is far more important and the record of this journey will form the main part of any assessment. Students will spend lesson time putting together this record. An excellent end product can be important but no more so than evidence of positive engagement in the process.

All students will keep some form of learning journal where they will regularly record their plans, ideas and thoughts to show how their project is developing.

The Learning Journal

This is where students will record the process of producing their project. It is this process that students need to be able to demonstrate once the project is finished. To help them do this, all students will be given time and resources to produce a learning journal throughout the year. They will begin it at the start of the process and use it as a continuous record of their learning.

 The learning journal will contain information like:

  • planning
  • mind-maps of ideas in development
  • rough drafts
  • notes of conversations and meetings
  • useful pieces of research
  • reflections on progress and learning
  • regular self-evaluation
  • records of feedback received
  • lists of sources used 

Eventually the information in the student’s learning journal will form a key part of their final, assessed report.

And finally, some project ideas:

Many of these ideas have been successfully used by students at River House or at other schools using Personal Projects around the world:

raising environmental awareness eg. dangers of burning plastic
promoting a style of music eg. jazz, blues etc.
a short film about…eg. adolescence, bullying
a water pollution storybook
fashion
travel guide
black & white photographic portrayal of ……
healthy lifestyles recipe book
animal welfare
documentary on traditional ……
eco-friendly design
making models
diabetic chocolate
pre-school support
recycling
sport tutorials
music video
alternative energy
book of puzzles
You Tube
stage management
aquarium
book about laughter
organic beauty products
local transport
organic….
dressing up
construction
a library of things 

Remember, above all your project should be something that you ENJOY! Have fun with it, explore areas of your learning that you never have before and have fun.

  • Food and nutrition
  • Gardening
  • Physical Education
  • Humanities
  • Music
  • Drama
  • Dance
  • Creative arts and crafts
  • Technology
  • Media Studies
  • Personal Social Health and Careers Education
Covid-19

We are committed to reopening River House as soon as we are able to, with the necessary precautions in place to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff. River House Governors have decided a potential start date of November 2nd, 2020 and we are currently all working towards this.

General Terms & Conditions

RIVER HOUSE ACADEMY TERMS & CONDITIONS 2020-21

These terms & conditions form a legally binding agreement made between you and River House Academy

Deposit
You are required to pay a non-refundable one month fee as a deposit to hold your child’s place once your application has been accepted. This amount will be deducted from your final month’s payment. This payment can be made via Transferwise or into our River House Academy bank account.

Admission fee
For the first year, there will be an admission fee charged as a one time non-refundable payment of Rs.5000 per child, made at the time of enrolment.

Administration Fee
From year two onwards, there will be an annual administration fee of Rs. 2500 per child made at the time of enrolment.

Enrolment
The day your child starts school, you will be required to fill out an enrolment form and sign our terms & conditions form. Please also bring two passport photos and a copy of your child’s passport and current visa.

Fees
Fee payment date

Please pay your first month’s fees on or before the day your child starts school. You are required to pay your fees at the start of each month. You will be invoiced on the 25th of each month and payment is due by the last day of the month for the next month. In addition, you are required to pay the last month’s fee’s at enrolment. 

Fee payments
If your child starts mid-month your fees are due to be paid at enrolment, for the remaining period of that month. If your child starts mid-week, you will be charged for the full week. Children who leave mid-month will be charged for the entire month.

Late fees
Any late fees will be subject to late payment charges of Rs.100 per day.

Yearly payment
If you pay the fees for your child’s full stay in advance you will receive a 5% discount.

Sibling discount
A discount of 10 % will be given for your 2nd and 3rd child.

Personal holidays and absence
There are no fee discounts available for holidays or absences (including illness) from the school. Where possible please try to avoid taking holidays during the school term. Before booking your trip, it is essential that you check with the school to avoid missing important dates.

Notice of leaving
When you enrol your child at the academy you are required to give your attendance dates. Should your departure date be brought forward, you will be expected to pay according to your original dates given at enrolment.

Illness
Do not bring your child into school if they are ill, or are showing signs of being ill. If your child becomes ill at school, a Parent/Guardian will be contacted and asked to collect your child. Please text, email or telephone in the morning to let the Headteacher know if your child will be absent from school due to illness and what the illness is if it could potentially affect others. All medication must be brought in by a Parent/Guardian with clear instructions as to how and when it should be administered. Please do not allow your child to come to school with medication in their bag. Please check your child regularly for head lice. If we discover your child has head lice, they will be sent home from school and not allowed to return until the head lice have been treated.

Valuable items (including all electronic devices)
Valuable items, including all electronic devices, are not allowed to be brought into school. Children in the Secondary class may bring in a mobile phone but it should be kept in their bag at all times. We do not accept any responsibility for any items that are brought in.

School opening times
School lessons start at 9am. Please ensure your children arrive at school between 8.45 am-8.55am so that lessons can start promptly. If you are going to be late, please let us know. There will be no adult supervision before 8.45am. Please be aware that staff are busy at this time preparing for the day. Should you wish to speak to a member of staff please do so at 3pm or by prior appointment.

Collection from school
Children need to be collected from the school building. Please let us know If someone else will be collecting your child from school.

Unexpected school closure Occasionally the school may be forced to close due to unforeseen circumstances in the interest of health and safety. In such cases, you will be informed by text as early as possible.

Admissions