Exciting and innovative curriculum
Our curriculum is an exciting spring board to learning from which our pupils explore above and beyond the core syllabus. It pays homage to the traditional, for example Latin is taught to all pupils up to Year 9, whilst embracing the future, both in the use of technology - all pupils from Yr 10 use ipads to enhance their lessons - and in the choice of subjects. Mandarin and computer coding are the latest recruits to pupils’ timetable.
Devised and honed to challenge even the most able student our curriculum includes the wide range of subjects one would expect from an academically selective institution. But it offers so much more. Alongside the core topics, Latymer has created its own unique course, World Perspectives, which perfectly illustrates the eclectic and ambitious character of the School. Taught to Years 10 and 11, it is a collaboration between the History, Geography, Religious Studies, Economics and Classics departments, developed specifically to encourage in pupils an aptitude for independent learning and critical and creative thinking. Topics studied have included such weighty issues as: Economic globalization; Democracy and alternative political systems; issues of multiculturalism; terrorism and counter-terrorism; sustainability; geopolitical issues and the nature of freedom. World Perspectives is a great introduction to subjects pupils would not normally study until A levels and is now accredited by UCAS with GCSE accreditation.
Timetabled for optimal learning
Much thought and attention has gone into creating a timetable that complements our curriculum. There are 35 teaching periods in the week, each of 45 minutes, but unlike many schools our timetable is spread over two weeks. This system accommodates double periods of 90 minutes for some subjects, allowing pupils to really immerse themselves in their subjects.
In Year 7 lessons cover English, Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, French, Mandarin, Geography, History, Religious Studies, Latin, Computer Coding, Design, Art, Music, Drama and PE. Each year group spends an afternoon a week at Games, at Wood Lane as well as having one period a week of PE on site.
In Year 8, Maths and French are taught in ability bands.
In Year 9 second Modern Language - German or Spanish - is added to the subjects studied and in the spring term of pupils select their GCSE choices.
In Years 10 and 11 our pupils study a minimum of 9 GCSE courses though many take 10 or 11. The core subjects include English and English Literature, Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, a Modern Language and a World Perspectives course. Optional subjects are chosen from French, German, Spanish, Mandarin, Latin, Greek, History, Geography, Computer Science, Religious Studies, Drama, Design, Art and Music. Most subjects will follow the International GCSE course, which offers a broad and thorough foundation for A Level.
In the Sixth Form the range of subjects we offer is wide, embracing all the core subjects along with choices such as the Extended Project, History of Art, Politics, Philosophy, Greek, Economics, Classical Civilisation and Photography. We encourage students to take on the Extended Project as a chance for them to stretch their intellectual wings and develop skills in research, independent study and academic essay writing. It is a popular option and is positively viewed by universities.
All students study three A levels or Pre-Us and undertake a ten-week course on Research Skills and Theories of Knowledge. Students then elect to study a choice of a 4th (and perhaps a 5th) A level; Extended Project, Research, Academic elective courses; Modern/Classical Language ab initio or A/S equivalent; Maths to AS level. The timetable is built around the students' options, to facilitate choice and diversity. Classes and tutorial groups are small - typically no more than twelve in a set. All written exams are taken at the end of the Upper Sixth; this effectively means our students have five terms of teaching uninterrupted by public examinations and can develop the depth and the breadth of their subject knowledge.