Why do smaller classes improve academic outcomes?

Why do smaller classes improve academic outcomes?

The link between class size and attainment at primary school stage has been acknowledged by the UK Department of Education. The best results, evidence shows, are seen when classes drop below 20 pupils. Smaller classes better meet the needs of children’s distinct personality types. They allow the teacher to tailor teaching to learning styles and abilities. They mean no child gets ‘lost in the middle’. They’re better for both less able children and more able children. They improve children’s social skills due to increased collaboration. Article by Stuart Douch, Headmaster, Sompting Abbotts Prep School

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The life lessons children learn taking part in a school drama production

The life lessons children learn taking part in a school drama production

Sompting Abbotts places a strong emphasis on the performing arts. In different ways, we seek to boost pupils’ confidence and communication skills because we know these will be invaluable to their lives ahead. Self-confidence is gained from each tiny success, which leads to more success. Learning to perform and speak in public are essential skills that will be transferable to the children’s adult lives.

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11 essential tips for hearing your Key Stage 1 child read aloud at home

11 essential tips for hearing your Key Stage 1 child read aloud at home

How much should you correct your Key Stage 1 child when you hear them read aloud to you? Should you force them to sound out the word? Do you get them to read every day? If they don't want to, do you insist or just not bother? Here, you'll find our top 10 tips for how to hear your child read aloud. It's a skill in itself that's useful for parents to 'learn' to support their child on their learning-to-read journey!

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Sompting Abbotts stars as film location for BAFTA-awarded director's new film Old Boys

Sompting Abbotts stars as film location for BAFTA-awarded director's new film Old Boys

Sompting Abbotts Prep School is set to hit cinema screens around the UK as the location for BAFTA-award-winning Director Toby MacDonald’s new film Old Boys. The school’s Grade II-listed Neo-Gothic building and well-preserved interior made it the perfect backdrop for the film set in a posh English boys’ boarding school called Caldermount during the 1980s.

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How Sompting Abbotts is growing a generation of bookworms

How Sompting Abbotts is growing a generation of bookworms

There’s something different about Sompting Abbotts’ school library. It’s run by the children themselves! Some people might think that libraries are antiquated. They carry something called ‘books’ that people can borrow! But we believe children’s access to books is critical for brain development and academic success – doubly so in the digital age.

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11 facts you need to know about the Common Entrance exam

11 facts you need to know about the Common Entrance exam

What is the Common Entrance exam? Stuart Douch, Headmaster of West Sussex private school Sompting Abbotts Preparatory School, has the answers to all your questions. Firstly, it’s unique and not that 'common'. It's a series of examinations taken by children in the Summer term of Year 8. These prepare children superbly for GCSE. 

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What not to do at a school open day

What not to do at a school open day

Don’t think you have to take your child to the Open Day. But, if your child is mature enough to come along, then definitely take them with you. Don’t rely on the school inspection report. They tell you little about the school’s ethos. Don’t turn down a school tour from a pupil. Don’t rely on the marketing materials. To get behind the gloss, there’s nothing like actually visiting a school.

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Best-selling author Alex Preston on the "warmth and genial eccentricity" of Sompting Abbotts Prep School

Best-selling author Alex Preston on the "warmth and genial eccentricity" of Sompting Abbotts Prep School

Celebrated novelist Alex Preston recalls his memories of his Worthing independent school Sompting Abbotts: "I saw the school, fell in love with it, and begged to be sent there. It was all of my Jennings/Malory Towers fantasies rolled into one gothic dream of a building."

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Our top 30 books recommendations for Key Stage 1 children (aged 5 – 7)

  Our top 30 books recommendations for Key Stage 1 children (aged 5 – 7)

Sompting Abbotts’ teachers pooled their knowledge and experience to create this list of top 30 books for Key Stage 1 children. It's across the ages of five and seven – in school terms this is Key Stage one: Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 – when most children learn to read. Whether your children are reading alone or you’re reading to them, there’s some inspiring book choices here! 

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How the best preparatory schools are honing children's 'sharp skills' for the workplace ahead

How the best preparatory schools are honing children's 'sharp skills' for the workplace ahead

Many jobs our children will be applying for haven’t yet been invented. But certain skills will be key to help them succeed in the new professional landscape. It’s abilities such as leadership, collaboration, problem solving, creativity and analytical thinking that they'll need to cope with technological innovation such as artificial intelligence, robotics and more. We talked to Mark Brotherton, Director of Education with the IAPS, to ask how prep schools can best prepare pupils to thrive in the workplace ahead.

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Nick Linfield, OBE, on why he owes Sompting Abbotts "an enormous debt of gratitude"

Nick Linfield, OBE, on why he owes Sompting Abbotts "an enormous debt of gratitude"

Old Abbottonian Nicholas (Nick) Linfield was awarded an OBE for his Services to Defence in the 2017 New Year’s Honours List. It’s 50 years since Nick began his education at West Sussex independent school Sompting Abbotts. We invited him to talk about his education and career – and to reveal why he’s proud to be the only former pupil on the school’s scholarship Honours’ Boards whose son and daughter feature there too …

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The hauntingly beautiful hit song inspired by the walled secret garden at Sompting Abbotts

The hauntingly beautiful hit song inspired by the walled secret garden at Sompting Abbotts

Ned Mortimer, lead singer of the talented band August and After, has revealed that the lyrics to his successful track, The Orchard, from the album Embers, was inspired by his time as a child at West Sussex independent school Sompting Abbotts Preparatory School. Here he talks about his life today and just how he came to write that special song …

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10 reasons why learning sports for children is more than one big game

10 reasons why learning sports for children is more than one big game

There’s a sport out there that every child (even the non-sporty types!) will love, says former Sompting Abbotts pupil Matt Richbell. Now Director of Sports at leading independent school Trinity in Croydon, he believes the life lessons sports teach children go far beyond the physical benefits. They will make your child more successful academically too.

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What exactly is a prep school? (And the answers to 10 more questions about preparatory schools)

What exactly is a prep school? (And the answers to 10 more questions about preparatory schools)

What is a 'prep' school in the UK? ‘Prep’ or preparatory schools are UK private schools that are the equivalent to the primary and middle schools of the state education sector. Most cater for children aged two to 13 years. Prep schools are independent so do not have to follow the National Curriculum although many use it as a starting point but go beyond it.

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