We believe that artistic risk-taking empowers students to embrace failure, learn from mistakes, and ultimately flourish into more intrepid individuals who aren’t afraid to colour outside the lines!
Art will always hold a key position in the education and enrichment of our students. Understanding colour, composition and form leads, not just to increased skill, but also greater understanding of the world around them. Throughout Key Stage 3, students are provided with myriad opportunities to explore a range of mediums, from painting and drawing to sculpture, printmaking, photography, ceramics and more.
We take advantage of the many artistic and aesthetic opportunities that London has to offer through a range of trips, visits and masterclasses; and emphasise the importance of self-driven exploration by encouraging pupils to independently do so as well.
From Year 10, students can choose to follow the Fine Art GCSE course and gain even greater opportunities to express themselves, while building skills that will be with them for life.
We want students to know the value of helping others whilst also teaching valuable entrepreneurial skills and enabling them to know the satisfaction of seeing the fruits of their own money-raising labours. We also work within our local community and help to support local enterprise.
IT proficiency is central to the way students learn at LPS Clapham. Every student has their own laptop and much of our curriculum is delivered online. As well as enabling their IT skills to flourish, this allows students to take control of their learning and study when it suits them, by being able to access everything they need at home and elsewhere, as easily as they can at school.
Technology clubs are also popular with coding, robotics, and animation on offer.
Students have weekly Computing lessons throughout their time at school. The skills taught in these lessons aid their learning throughout the curriculum, as well as preparing them for their computing GCSE and beyond.
From the day they join, students gain an appreciation of how computers work and develop hands on experience of exciting topics such as image-editing, 3D modelling and animation, electronics, and robotics. With a problem-solving approach to our lessons, students learn to analyse and develop effective solutions using languages such as Scratch and Python. The immense satisfaction this brings nurtures the resilience and confidence students will need to be able to take the challenges of modern life head-on.
In a transforming employment marketplace, the skills taught in Design & Technology are becoming increasingly sought after. Skills for design thinking; empathy, innovation, practical problem solving, evaluation, and collaboration, are central to workplaces of the future.
All students study DT for two hours in years 7-9. Each year focuses on different materials and areas of design offering opportunities that focus on building knowledge through practical experiences. This develops a broad and varied understanding of technical creative conceptualising and making skills, while developing their creative design thinking skills. Students engage with real world design challenges which focus on how man-made products and systems can be designed and manufactured to improve the world around them.
From Year 10, working towards their GCSE, students will develop a theoretical understanding of new and emerging technologies; energy, materials, systems and devices, while developing their understanding of designing and making principles. This knowledge will then be applied to a given contextual challenge similar to one they will experience for their GSCE in Year 11 which will allow them to develop their confidence in both the Year 11 written exam and the practical non examined assessment which starts at the end of Year 10.
Our drama curriculum aims to develop confidence, collaboration, and both verbal and non-verbal communication. Students learn to take initiative, tackle problems, and work effectively in teams – skills that extend far beyond their school years.
We ensure that every student has the opportunity to experience live theatre at least once a year. It’s a fantastic way for our students to engage with the arts, explore different forms of storytelling, and broaden their cultural horizons.
Outside of the curriculum, there are plenty of ways for students to get involved in the dramatic arts. Students who enjoy the spotlight, or want to gain more confidence under it, can choose to perform in plays and showcases throughout the year as dancers, singers, musicians, actors, or even puppeteers! But performance is not for everyone and, while we encourage our students to get out of their comfort zone, we do not force those that prefer to be behind the scenes out onto the stage. Luckily the world of theatre is for more than just the thespians and we provide opportunities for every student to try their hand at lighting, costume and set design, writing, directing, stage-management, producing, cinematography, film-editing and special effects.
For those who want to refine their performance skills further, we offer co-curricular LAMDA (London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art) lessons. These lessons provide a structured path for students interested in earning recognised grades in speech and drama.
We are passionate about the written word and its ability to create empathy, change, and enjoyment. The study of English encompasses a broad range of skills, some fundamental and functional; some encouraging critical enquiry and close analysis; others artistic and creative.
The curriculum is designed to equip students with skills to help them navigate exams, further education, and ultimately to guide them in their use and investigation of language in their adult lives. Most of all, we hope to inspire a love of literature and language, and a curiosity in its quirks, scope, and intricacies.
Our teachers are all passionate about confident and cogent communication both in English lessons and elsewhere in the curriculum, so strong links and high expectations are maintained throughout the school day. Empowerment in speaking and empathy in listening are championed by all.
Reading is of great importance: our library is, appropriately, at the heart of our school. Students will encounter a varied range of texts in the classroom, but also in clubs, with their tutors, and for personal pleasure.
From Year 7 to 9, English is studied as part of our Integrated Learning unit. At GSCE, all students will take English Language and English Literature.
French and Spanish is taught in Year 7 and students then choose which one they would like to continue with in year 8 and 9. In Year 10 and 11 students can choose to study a language at GCSE.
The aim of languages at LPS Clapham is to not only help pupils to become confident language learners, but also to help broaden their horizons of different cultures and civilisations. Learning a language encompasses a range of different skills that we aim to build on in every lesson. Through listening, speaking, reading and writing we hope that students will be able to confidently converse with each other, as well as be able to understand, decode and create the written word.
At every opportunity, cultural knowledge of the countries in which French and Spanish are spoken will be integrated into the lessons. It is imperative that in the global world we live in, that students have a tolerance and sensitivity of other languages and cultures and we believe that learning a language is a door to this.
In their study of geography, students are guided to understand the world around them and their place in it. Our aim is for all students to feel a sense of identity and belonging, but also a responsibility for the care of our world.
Geography is a subject of increasing importance in today’s world and abundant in transferable skills. Geographers are needed to help solve local and global issues such as food and energy security, the spread of disease, causes and consequences of migration and the impacts of global warming. Geography also provides key analytical, numerical and literacy skills, as well as functional skills to encourage independence.
Work in the classroom is supported by field trips enabling students to witness and experience, first-hand, the significance of geography in the real world.
From Year 7 to 9, geography is studied as part of our thematic unit. In Year 10 and 11, students can choose to study geography at GCSE.
We equip students with the skills to question events, people, and the past. Our aim is to ensure that students understand the importance of questioning and investigating evidence, and to give them the confidence to form and justify their own opinions.
Our curriculum encompasses a range of topics in British and world history, with the aim of broadening their understanding of the past and how we have come to be where we are today.
Students will learn a wide variety of historical skills: evidence gathering, interpretation, analysis, persuasive argument, and accurate writing to enhance literacy and critical thinking. All these abilities allow students to prepare to meet the complex challenges of modern society.
From Year 7 to 9, history is studied as part of our Integated Learning unit. In Years 10 and 11, students can choose to study history at GCSE.
We live in a world built on maths. It is the foundation of science, computing, finance – even music. Few subjects have been as important to the development of the society we live in today and the things we rely on and take for granted.
Our aim is for all students to leave us as confident, competent mathematicians and as problem-solvers. We believe that problem-solving is both how and why we learn maths, and that it should be integrated into every lesson to develop students’ depth of understanding of the subject and to build their resilience when faced with inevitable obstacles.
In the maths mastery style, based on evidence from Shanghai and Singapore, students investigate problems and communicate their thoughts clearly to others using accurate mathematical language. This will lead them to reach their own conclusions or come up with their own rules and patterns. We use a concrete-pictorial-abstract approach in lessons, so that students can deepen their understanding of mathematical concepts through a variety of representations.
From Year 9 onwards, as preparation for GCSEs, we move to a more systematic teaching style that combines the understanding gained through the mastery approach with investigative approaches to increasingly complex mathematical problems. This ensures all foundational mathematical concepts and skills are secured whilst also preparing our pupils to face, not just their future examinations, but the many mathematical complexities of the real world as well.
At LPS Clapham, we explore music both theoretically and through performance. Our aim is to create confident collaborators and performers and to foster an appreciation for the diverse forms and styles that exist in the world. As students delve into different musical genres, they also discover various cultures and historical eras, enhancing their musical skills and broadening their horizons.
Through individual and group projects and performances, students gain key skills, increase creativity, and develop their ability to work as a team. They develop an understanding of music that goes beyond playing notes and learn to listen critically.
We also offer individual peripatetic instrument and voice lessons. These lessons provide students with additional opportunity to explore their musical talents and interests outside of the regular academic curriculum. We offer a diverse range of instrument options, including piano, guitar, violin, trombone, and more, allowing students to choose the instrument that resonates with them the most. Our teachers can cater to students of all skill levels, from beginners to advanced musicians and we regularly enter pupils that wish to take grades into the ABRSM examinations.
We recognise the importance of sport for both physical and mental health and each student has at least two hours of sport and PE a week. Our aim is to foster enjoyment of sport and provide the foundations for a lifelong habit of being active and to provide opportunities for both traditional team sports and more esoteric and individual ones such as cycling at Herne Hill velodrome. Above all, we want each student to find an activity that they enjoy and that they can take with them for life.
There are plenty of opportunities for those who are athletically gifted or who just love playing sport or being active both in the timetable and in after school clubs. As well as access to the common, we use the facilities of our neighbour’s astro court and are lucky to have a wealth of sporting facilities close to the school which include tooting athletics track, Clapham Common tennis courts, football pitches, Tooting Bec lido as well as other options such as Streatham ice rink and leisure centre and Herne Hill velodrome. Each week we run a football and netball club with our sibling school, Eaton Square Senior and we have regular matches with other schools.
Students have the opportunity to sample a wide range of sports in PE, Games and extra-curricular clubs including cycling, lacrosse, judo, CrossFit, athletics, AFL, archery, basketball, cricket, cross country, softball, squash, badminton, volleyball, Gaelic football, handball, ice skating, tennis, climbing, pilates, and yoga, as well as focusing in depth, on our core sports in which we play competitive matches (football, netball, rugby, hockey, tennis and cricket).
With the exception of rugby, most of our sports are mixed.
Students who enjoy learning about sport, health and human physiology may choose to take academic PE as a GCSE. This enables students to learn theoretical concepts through practical application.
Personal, social, health and economics education (PSHE) runs throughout every subject and is an important part of our curriculum. We are proud that it is fluid and adapts to the changing needs of our students and community. It also exceeds statutory requirements and guidance, including those of the DfE and the PSHE Association.
PSHE often intertwines with topics in other curriculum subjects such as science, Sport/PE, English and humanities. It is taught twice a week during tutor time and is team taught by two teachers. It is also at the heart of our new Global Citizenship lessons that encompass leadership, financial literacy, careers, and sustainability topics.
We aim to match the curriculum to each student’s age, developmental stage, particular social pressures they are likely to encounter, and their interests and needs. Some of the topics covered during lessons include:
We have a spiral structure to PSHE and expand on these topics regularly so that each student’s understanding of the subject matter increases and develops as they mature and progress up the school.
Our PSHE curriculum has been updated to account for the 2020 Sex and Relationships guidance, set out by the Department for Education. Whilst we feel that Sex and Relationships education is vital for all, we accept that under the new guidance parents may withdraw their children from aspects of Sex Education in PSHE if they wish.
In TPR, we encourage students to consider the world in which we live, their place and identity therein, and how they might make a positive contribution to the lives of others.
The influence of religion has shaped individual, social and political life around the world. Understanding different belief systems and their role in society helps to make sense not only of the past, but of the complexities of modern century life.
We introduce students to different faiths and belief systems by looking at religious texts and examining their practices and ethics. By understanding how values and traditions impact and influence the moral issues we face today, we encourage students to make connections between them, hone their critical thinking skills and show tolerance and respect for people of all cultures and faiths.
Students will develop philosophical skills to reason, argue and evaluate claims made by religious and non-religious belief systems. We encourage them to consider the theological and philosophical responses to moral issues. Students will learn to respond to fundamental questions of life raised by religion, philosophy and human experience, including questions about the meaning and purpose of life.
From Year 7 to 9, TPR is studied as part of our thematic unit. In Year 10 and 11, students may choose to study Religious Studies at GCSE.
The sciences are of great and growing importance to every aspect of modern life. The aim of the science department at LPS Clapham is to allow students to explore the world they live in and foster their curiosity in the natural phenomena that we observe.
Practical work, independent learning and creating a love of science is at the heart of the department’s philosophy of teaching. We aim for our students to become scientifically literate with the skills to make responsible decisions concerning science related social issues.
Biology, Chemistry and Physics are taught as three separate subjects following the ‘Exploring Science’ curriculum, as well as a ‘How Science Works’ lesson to help foster a greater understanding of practical science and application of Scientific concepts.
We prepare for both the Double and Triple awards at GCSE – i.e. combined science (two GCSEs) or separate sciences (three GCSEs of Biology, Chemistry and Physics). Irrespective of which award is taken, students will be taught Biology, Chemistry and Physics separately.
Beyond the day to day curriculum, we encourage hands-on experimentation to foster curiosity, remind students that scientific success comes from repeated trial (and failure) and that curiosity is at the heart of a good scientist. We also run an after-school Dissection club.
Whether scoring top marks or finding a topic challenging, any student might find themselves in need of learning enrichment at some point during their school career. We strive to support students to reach their potential across all areas of their learning through a positive and nurturing approach. For students with potential barriers to learning, and those identified with SEND, our inclusive practice involves an understanding and collaborative way of working to adapt provision.
Learning enrichment is part of our day-to-day offering; all classroom resources are dyslexia-friendly and exam papers are fully accessible. Students are guided to develop confidence through strategies that will help to access learning within the classroom. Staff collaborate with the head of Learning Enrichment to tailor provision to those in need of support.
Where we feel that a pupil would benefit from working with, or being assessed by an outside professional, we work closely with parents to make recommendations and to determine the next steps. We value pupil voice at LPS Clapham and support pupils with their understanding of their individual strengths and targets, alongside sharing strategies that can support their learning.
Global Citizenship is our programme that teaches a combination of leadership, community work and sustainability – supporting all of our pupils on their journey to become successful global citizens.
Some examples of what has been covered in the Autumn term: