Oakhill School is a co-educational day school, situated in the beautiful town of Knysna on the Garden Route in the Western Cape. The School has an outstanding academic record, with a 100% pass rate in the IEB examination since its inception. Oakhill also has a fine reputation in sports, music, art and drama.
Welcome to Oakhill Schools
Little Oaks is part of Oakhill School and this makes for an easy transition from the Pre-Prep Phase to Grade 1 in the Foundation Phase.
Our values at Little Oaks include:
- Creating a caring community of learners
- Teaching to enhance development and learning
- Planning a curriculum to achieve important goals
- Assessing children’s development and learning
- Partnering with parents
Little Oaks has spacious and well-equipped classrooms accommodating Grade 000 (3 to 4 year olds), Grade 00 (4 to 5 year olds) and Grade R (5 to 6 year olds) with an extra all-purpose classroom for assemblies, music, movement, dance and drama rings. All teaching staff are well qualified and have a good understanding of child development. There is a Teacher Assistant in each class. All staff at Oakhill are also given opportunities for ongoing training and development to stay ahead of educational trends globally.
Our curriculum is centred around the child and developmentally appropriate teaching strategies and activities encourage the holistic development of each child ensuring that they have every opportunity to reach their unique full potential. We believe in discovering strengths and learning styles in each child. Each child is seen as an individual and every child matters to us. All the domains of development and learning such as physical, social, emotional and cognitive are important and closely related. Children’s learning and development in one domain influence and are influenced by what takes place in other domains. Play is important for developing self-regulation as well as for promoting language, cognition and social competence.
We use Interactive Whiteboards when teaching Literacy and Numeracy to the Grade R’s as we believe technology is an important aspect of 21st Century learning and thinking. Grade R’s are also taught how to use an iPad, as well as other basic computer skills through educational games.
Grades 1-3 – An Age of Discovery
- eager to learn
- great capacity to enjoy life
- growing independence
- guidance and encouragement
- exploration and discovery
- acceptance and friendship
- fun, enrichment and creativity
- reading, phonics, writing, spelling
- basic mathematics
- confidence in communication and expression
- movement, art and music
The Foundation Phase is a happy, nurturing environment where learning is facilitated in an atmosphere of love, understanding and responsible freedom. In these early years emphasis is placed on all aspects relating to self – learning to live comfortably with others, learning to master one’s feelings and express them safely, gaining self-esteem and welcoming new experiences. The children are encouraged to make their own decisions and to solve problems creatively.
The focus is on active learning and participation. Children learn best when they are actively involved in doing, thinking and discovering rather than passively receiving information. The Foundation Phase provides a lively introduction to the basics, building firm foundations in the 3R’s – reading, writing and arithmetic. Small classes ensure that each child’s progress is individually monitored.
“We need to allow for education of the heart as well as the cerebral cortex”.
– L Holdstock
Grade 4-7 – A lively learning ground
- enthusiastic, welcomes new experiences
- identifies strongly with the group
- expressive and communicative
- to build self-esteem and confidence
- to be actively engaged in the learning process
- creative expression
- development of sporting ability
- solving problems creatively
- examining concepts and attitudes
- working independently and co-operatively
- expression of own experience
With the basics firmly established, it is time to extend each child’s ability. The Intermediate Phase (Grades 4, 5 6 and 7) provides opportunity for exploration and growth. It is child-centred, and learning is seen as valuable and meaningful because it is based on experience and relevance. The core curriculum follows the prescribed syllabi of the Western Cape Education Department, a framework within which innovative and effective teaching methods make learning exciting.
“One looks back with appreciation to brilliant teachers, but with gratitude to those who touched our human feelings. The curriculum is so much necessary raw material, but warmth is the vital element for the growing plant and for the soul of the child.”
– Carl Jung
Grades 8-9 – A Time for Growth
- a developing adolescent
- a discoverer wanting to explore and question
- seeking individual identity
- relevance in education
- open discussions on all topics
- acceptance by peers
- effective oral and written communication
- understanding and empathy for others
Having emerged from Preparatory School, young teenagers are searching for their place in the world. This is an exciting yet challenging part of the journey towards adulthood. Grades 8 and 9 offer a caring and supportive environment, which stimulates and inspires students to achieve their potential.
“What we want to see is the child in pursuit of knowledge, and not knowledge in pursuit of the child.”
– George Bernard Shaw
Grade 10-12 – the pursuit of excellence
- a decision-maker
- a developing thinker
“The child is Father to the Man” (W. Wordsworth)
- self-worth, balance as a person
- information to make informed choices
- intimacy and friendship
- the responsibility to respond to opportunity
- the ability to think critically and independently
- commitment, endurance, and a desire for personal excellence
During these final years at school (Grades 10, 11 and 12), emphasis is increasingly on academic excellence as students prepare for the National Senior Certificate Examinations (Matric) written through the Independent Examinations Board (IEB).
The maturing adolescents must now master many skills. The ability to think and work independently, critically and creatively, to access knowledge and reach understanding and to communicate clearly, are the challenges facing them. Teachers and students become partners in a dynamic learning process, serving as a final springboard to adulthood.
Field trips form a strong part of the curriculum and students spend one week each year at an educational camp, exploring ecological issues, experiencing team-work and developing leadership qualities.
The Senior College provides outstanding preparation for the challenges facing our young people as they venture on to further education and future careers.
“Columbus did not set out to get to America. He discovered it. One does not set out for static known objectives – nor should one merely look in books for knowledge. There is so much within one’s own depth which, if developed, will add to life beyond the year 2000.”
– Peter Bishop, Oakhill Teacher
Oakhill School has purchased 17 hectares of land in the rural suburb of Welbedacht. Phase 1 of the development of this land is already complete and includes a state-of-the-art water-based Astroturf, as well as hockey, rugby, soccer, cricket and netball fields.
Despite Oakhill’s lack of bigger sports facilities in the past, the school has produced magnificent results against peer schools. 68 Oakhill students over both Prep and College represented their Province in their respective sporting disciplines in 2013. Kevin Evans, Michelle Eray, Rosie Finn and Mikayla Oliver are some of the past Oakhill College students who have achieved their national colours for sport.
The OSC (Oakhill Sports Campus) facility has allowed others to dream of doing the same, and the results have already spoken for themselves in terms of SWD numbers – 62 current Oakhill students obtained Provincial colours in their respective sporting disciplines in 2014.