Pre-Prep (ages 4-7)

The Pre-Prep department includes Reception, Year 1 and Year 2. It is a key time in a child’s education, because it lays the foundations for all the learning to come. In these vital years, it is not only what but how a child learns that will have a huge impact on their future education. In the right environment, they will form positive, attitudes to learning, understanding the difference between ‘I can’t do it’ and ‘I can’t do it yet’, building routes to confidence. They will learn to try, fail, dust themselves off and try again, equipping themselves for a lifetime of challenges.

What we provide:

Small class sizes

Small class sizes give children an advantage at all ages, but make a huge difference in the early years, when a few months in age can mean a huge difference in development. Our small classes allow every child to get enough attention and support from their teacher, allowing them to build skills rapidly.

Highly experienced Early Years staff

The team of staff behind our Pre-Prep is what makes the Early Years so productive. Experienced and committed, they support and encourage the pupils as they get to grips with school life, helping children negotiate the social as well as educational challenges that are part of starting school.

A strong start in the core subjects

We want even our youngest children to enjoy as many different experiences as possible. Our wide and stimulating curriculum ignites interest and build enthusiasm for future learning. Particular care, however, is taken with the core subjects of English and Maths. These key building blocks in turn give children access to

Specialist subject experts

Children from Reception upwards learn from subject experts, in Music, Modern Foreign Languages, Art and Sport. We all remember the teachers whose enthusiasm brought a subject alive for us. At Cricklade Manor Prep, even our youngest children are taught by staff who are passionate about their subjects and can pass that enthusiasm on to the children they teach.

Individualised learning

Small class sizes allow teachers to give each child the time and focus that he or she needs every day. In addition, every child from Year 1 up has four 30-minute individual learning sessions built into the curriculum each week. These might take the form of extra support in a particular subject or the opportunity to extend learning, depending on ability, with each session tailored to the child.

Exceptional facilities

Our children have access to facilities and resources that are unusual in small prep schools, and virtually unheard of in state primaries. We have fully equipped science laboratories, a huge amount of outdoor space, a large sports hall and swimming pool, a Forest School area and a well-equipped music department. All of these are used regularly by the whole school community, enhancing and extending learning.


Our boys and girls are offered an enormous number of opportunities, both within and beyond the curriculum. They are encouraged to try new experiences, to discover things to inspire and motivate them. Within the Pre-Prep these opportunities range from trips such as the Toy Museum and Cotswold Farm, to clubs including dance, tennis and yoga. They will perform on stage to an audience, play sport competitively, get involved in community initiatives and programmes. They will take part in special off-curriculum days, such as the Science Spectacular.

A healthy work/play balance

Happy children make the best learners. The best way to engage children in their learning is to make it fun. There is plenty of time built into the school day for play and exercise, with outstanding pastoral support to ensure that children are happy and maintain a positive attitude to their education.

Discover more about Cricklade Manor Prep on a personal tour of the school: