Junior preparatory phase

Junior preparatory phase: Grade R to Grade 3

In the junior preparatory phase, we focus on teaching the foundational skills, concepts and knowledge which are required for further learning. We offer a vibrant, invitational atmosphere where the learners enjoy coming to school and where they acquire a love for learning, that will sustain them throughout their school years. We acknowledge the potential in each learner to reach optimum ability; therefore, there is less emphasis on competitiveness and more emphasis on individual achievement. We encourage opportunities for growth in independence and responsibility so that learners can take up the challenge of being personally responsible and accountable for their actions in the senior preparatory phase.

 ‘Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.’  ̶  William Butler Yeats

At Grantleigh children are individuals and loved unconditionally. Through teaching of the highest calibre, junior preparatory learners are encouraged to think for themselves, to use the skills they have acquired in various contexts to express their own enthusiasm and to rejoice in the differences that exist between them.

This passion for bringing out the unique talents in each learner lies at the heart of our education philosophy ensuring that pupils will want to go on learning all their lives. This is achieved through a caring and dedicated staff, well-adjusted learners and a very supportive parent body.

For effective learning to take place children must be actively engaged therefore they are exposed to co-operative, integrated and varied learning experiences. To ensure this, educators keep up with modern and innovative teaching trends. We always endeavour to create an environment that is safe both physically and emotionally, where authentic relationships can develop between educators and their learners.

Afrikaans mother-tongue classes were introduced from Grade R level at the beginning of 2015. To date we have Afrikaans classes up to and including Grade 3.

To support the academic programme, the children receive specialised teaching in certain subjects. They do this in groups of no more than 13 to optimize the learning experience.

The three main learning areas in the foundation phase are:

  • Language and literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Life Skills


Language and literacy

Home language (English or Afrikaans) and first additional language (English or Afrikaans)

In the literacy subject, we have incorporated the latest global trend of matching learners to book levels and of teaching guided reading and writing. This develops conceptual understanding at the learners’ own pace. Literacy skills are also taught using structured text types.


The curriculum has been written with a learner-centric, problem-solving approach leading to an individualised, well-developed number concept in young learners. This facilitates the successful learning of Mathematics as an abstract subject from Grade 4 to Grade 12.

Life Skills

We have added Robotics and Science to this subject as it involves design and a deep level of cognition, which underpins the learners’ creativity in using software to program their Lego educational toys. Collaboration is encouraged by allowing learners to work in pairs.