“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all”
Some children have the good fortune to be privately educated at schools with the drive, experience, and resources to teach children to think for themselves.
At Orchard House School, children learn their personal choices can make a real difference, and their opinion matters. Equally importantly, they learn to respect the opinions of others.
They learn the value of endeavour and of staying power, of developing social skills, and of forming respectful relationships.
Why do so many hands fly into the air when a teacher asks a question at Orchard House School? Our children feel confident and valued, so they are not worried about making mistakes and are willing to ‘have a go’.
This eagerness to be involved and make a contribution is one of the most valuable life skills we nurture in our pupils.
Pastoral Care in Action
Pastoral care comes first
Children blossom when they feel secure, happy, and valued. We put huge store on pastoral care to ensure every pupil gains the confidence to achieve their best.
No child has any doubt that teachers will lend a safe and sympathetic ear to their issues. Each child has a Pupil Pastoral Plan where they can note any private worries so that teachers may monitor their happiness and wellbeing. This tool, created by our headmistress, Mrs Edwards, was shortlisted for a national educational award.
Our buddy system helps newcomers through their early days, and we encourage older children to mentor younger pupils, instilling a sense of responsibility.
The school’s house system encourages teamwork and a competitive spirit, allowing children to celebrate their own success as well as the achievements of others. Whole school events and charitable activities foster a sense of pride in belonging to a wider community.
“Tell me and I’ll forget. Show me and I may remember. Involve me and I’ll learn”
Exploring further afield
Fresh air and new experiences are vital for children to soar to greater heights.We encourage Orchard House children to gain independence, resilience, team skills, self-reliance, a willingness to take risks, and an interest in the wider world by taking them on optional residential trips.
We recognise that, for many children, a school residential trip will give them the first night they spend away from family, so we focus on helping every child to feel secure and have fun in a new environment.
Our residential adventures include:
• a geography field trip to Suffolk, with after-dark nature trails and bug hunting
• history field trip to York for a week of cathedral city sights
• outward bound trip to the Isle of Wight
• spending a week at an outward bound château in France where only French is spoken.
Activities for your child
Variety and new adventures are the lifeblood of curiosity and enthusiasm. Aside from being fun and exciting, extra-curricular activities can work wonders in building confidence.
Orchard House School offers a wide spectrum of activities which encourage self-expression and the development of talents outside the classroom, including:
Sports – We offer clubs and squads across all major sports. Children can put their skills to the test at fixtures and tournaments throughout the year.
Music – Groups include school orchestra, chamber choir, senior and junior choirs, and parent choir. Visiting music teachers offer individual instrumental tuition on a variety of instruments.
Drama and performance – Children perform in assemblies, plays, musical productions, and concerts throughout the year. Our inclusive approach gives each child the opportunity to shine.
Clubs – We offer science, chess, debating, art, LAMDA, animation, creative arts, cookery, yoga, frisbee, and more!
“The parents' association isn't stuffy. It's an active and fun community that makes you feel very welcome”
Orchard House School parent
Communication is key to identifying individual needs
We actively encourage a close relationship between parents and all staff.
Sharing information gives us a deeper insight into the wellbeing and progress of each child, and our open-door policy means we’re readily available to discuss any concerns that arise.
Parents are encouraged to support their child’s learning, and the school gives guidance on how best this can be achieved.
Parents are invited to regular parents’ evenings and open mornings, sports days, concerts, class assemblies, and theatrical productions. They can also join in their child’s class to share special events or celebrate a religious festival.
It is thanks to our parents’ association we have a friendly, close-knit and supportive community extending a warm welcome to all.