The Primary Department at Bedelsford consists of four classes for children aged between 5 and 11. The pupils are grouped according to cognitive ability, but other groupings can also be taken into consideration depending on the needs of the children.
Key Stage 1: Elephants and Hippos
Key Stage 2: Giraffes, Zebras and Lions
Pupils on Autistic Spectrum Disorder are taught within class provision with specific sessions (e.g. Communication Modes Session, Communication through Art) in the Communication Support Base. Also, depending on specific needs, some students attend the Communication Support Base throughout the day for short topic-linked sessions.
At Bedelsford School pupils have access to secure outside areas for play. The interactive outdoor play areas are equipped with switch operated boards. There is an interactive Sensory Music Theatre, a soft play- room (MUSLA), hydro pool, and PE Hall as well as wheelchair accessible equipment, a Magic Carpet and 4D PODD.
Off-site provision includes:
- inclusion links with local mainstream schools,
- visits to the local area (e.g. the Fairfield and Kingston Town facilities),
- trips that are curriculum-linked e.g. to local theatres (Polka Theatre), parks (Chessington Park, Richmond Park), Science Museum, Kew Gardens and Holly Lodge.
Primary Department students are taught National Curriculum subjects through a topic-based approach, based on a rolling four years programme and divided into three curriculum pathways. Pupils have individual termly curriculum goals and they are also set targets on their IEP’s which address their barriers to learning.
Communication is a priority in the Primary Department and development of language skills are planned jointly with the Speech and Language Therapist. Students are exposed to a variety of modes of communication such as Makaton sign language, use of high and low tech modes, Picture Communication Symbols, Objects of Reference and touch cues. All staff are trained in using modes of communication and work in close partnership with multi- professional teams.
Individual Differentiations pave the way for all learning at Bedelsford School and provide learning opportunities for learners to reach their full potential. We use a mixture of approaches tailored to individual pupils including Jolly Phonics, Letters and Sounds, Oxford Reading Tree books, Smart Phonics, Project X and computer programmes.
Dance, music and drama are taught throughout the Primary Department to ensure development of creativity and self-expression.
Positional timetables are in place to ensure that all students have an opportunity to develop their gross motor skills, work through their Therapy Programme and use walkers/standers throughout the day in school.
Attention Autism activities are used to avoid sensory overload during learning time as well as offer opportunities for calming down and preparation for learning, developing early learning skills.
Sensory learners are taught through cross curricular learning opportunities and methods such as Sensory Circuits are used to promote the development of cognitive skills.