"Middle School at BCS is a place where every child is known and understood at many different levels including academically, socially, and emotionally; in terms of special interests and abilities; in terms of creativity and in terms of faith. It’s a place where children can contribute to a community as well as receive its benefits.
There is much potential for development in the middle years. These are the ‘golden years of childhood’ where we do not solely need to focus on the task of preparing students for exams but where we can develop them as confident, lifelong learners; develop academic study skills; and develop resilience in character. We can offer a broad and enriched curriculum through the usual discrete subject areas but also through a well organised topic approach."
Mr Moon, Head of Middle School
Middle Schools reached their peak in England in 1983. Now just 114 remain. So, why at Bradford Christian School do we believe Middle School is important?
Two small steps are better than one big step
Transitions can be stressful times. From the 4 year old leaving the home environment to spend all week at school to the 16 year old taking on the pressure of external exams for the first time.
A middle school system provides two smaller transitions for children at ages 9 and 13 rather than one substantial transition at 11.
Nurturing & Academic Environment through to GCSE
Middle School at Bradford Christian School offers students the chance to be taught by subject specialists and at the same time maintain a small, caring environment. Subject staff get to know all students very well and indeed, most staff take them right through to their GCSEs.
A Cambridge University study in 2010 found that Middle Schools were better environments than traditional secondary transitions in year 7 but only when a strong teacher-pupil relationship was maintained.* Strong teacher-pupil relationships is a key aspect of our Middle School setting.
*Dr. J.E Symonds, Are UK middle schools better for early adolescents than transition into secondary school? A study of two school environments
Focus on being ‘planted for purpose’
As they reach the age of 9 our students are becoming aware that they exist in a world wider than their own family. At the same time they are becoming aware of their unique identity and character.
Many secular ideologies encourage our young people to ‘be whoever you want to be’ and ‘do whatever you want to do’. We however believe that our students are ‘planted with a purpose’. We encourage students to discover who they are created to be and to explore the world in which they have been purposefully planted.
This idea of being intentionally ‘planted’ is described by the psalmist in our school verse Psalm 1v3:
3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
Planted to bear fruit
Throughout EYFS and years 1-4 children are constantly reminded about the Fruits of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, self- control etc. Indeed, their classroom names reflect this focus: Love, Joy & Kindness.
Students in Middle School focus on what these fruits mean when applied in a wider context in their home, school and local community. They are encouraged to look beyond their home and discover who they can bless in their local environment.
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Bradford Christian School exists to partner parents in seeking to bring their children up in the ways of the Lord. We are an independent Christian school with a curriculum that focuses on the Bible and Jesus Christ in the lives of children and young people.
Students are encouraged to discover their own personal relationship with Jesus Christ and to maintain this in their futures.