Below, you will find details of our curriculum, but we believe that this basic information tells only half the story.

Pupils in all year-groups are taught by their Form Teacher as well as by subject specialists. The following subjects are taught in the Lower School:

  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Computer Science and Digital Literacy
  • Science
  • History
  • Geography
  • Modern Foreign Languages (French, Spanish and German)
  • Philosophy, Reasoning and Critical Thinking
  • Religious Education
  • Personal, Social and Health Education
  • Music
  • Drama
  • Physical Education
  • Games
  • Dance
  • Swimming
  • Art
  • Design Technology


Games lessons and the opportunity to take part in competitive sport form an important part of our timetable. Apart from the obvious benefits in physical development, ‘finite’ competition in a team environment teaches many character traits necessary for handling the ups and downs of life with resolve, wisdom and dignity.

Optional tuition is available in Speech & Drama and around twenty different musical instruments with regular opportunities to take part in examinations and concerts.

Classroom activities are complemented by day visits and residential trips for all pupils – for instance, a visit to a Victorian workhouse as part of History studies or, in Geography, a residential coastal erosion study.


Curriculum – A world of possibilities

Which would win, a car or a cat?

You’re probably thinking, ‘Silly question!’ or ‘I couldn’t possibly answer that without knowing the context…’

However, perhaps your response is,  ‘Well, it depends…’. If so, you’re beginning to imagine different scenarios, realising the almost endless possibilities.

Our children should understand that there is a world of ‘correct’ answers, in which they need to take responsibility and to fulfil expectations. Yet they know instinctively that the world of the ‘true’ is much bigger than the world of the ‘correct’  - and that, alongside the world of the possible, it remains uncharted territory.

The junior years can be a remarkably exciting time in our lives. A belief in infinite possibilities still lurks at the back of a child’s mind, whilst their powers of analysis and comprehension are nevertheless starting to operate with adult sophistication. This should be a time of tremendous wonder, openness and discovery.

In public exams such as GCSE and A Level, Norwich School achieves some of the finest results in the country. In the Lower School, however, the pressures of these public exams are still blessedly distant and without the ‘hoop jumping’ required by SATs and 11+ entrance exams, we can be truly independent and strive to fill our children’s junior years with a rich and varied diet of discovery and development. 


Curriculum – A curriculum for life

At Norwich Lower School there is little distinction between the value we place on the ‘curricular’ and the ‘extra-curricular’. We aim to offer our young people the widest possible range of experiences and opportunities. We strongly believe that the resulting growth in character is a gift that will remain with our pupils long after they have left us. 

Through our hugely-diverse range of subjects and activities, our pupils establish a rich and sophisticated bedrock of knowledge and understanding of the world - one that they will be able to access, articulate and build upon throughout their further studies and beyond. However, we also pursue three specific goals in our commitment to creating independent life-long learners with high academic standards:

Firstly, we encourage our pupils to be fully aware of, and engaged in, the process of their own education. All the teaching in the world is of little use unless there is learning, a process engaged in by the learner, not the teacher.

Secondly, we promote the rigorous absorption of basic skills. When a skill becomes unconscious and habitual, so our minds are free to confront new ideas and concepts.

Thirdly, we aim for our pupils to be resolute in their approach to solving problems, by which we mean new situations that require more than a memorised response. 


Curriculum – Curricular adventures across the years

Selected curricular topics and trips

Lower 1 (Year 3) 

  • Science – Magnets, Insulators, Earth in Space, Materials, Habitats & Adaptation, Science Fair
  • History – Normans, Monasteries & Cathedrals, Ancient Greece, Ancient Egypt
  • Geography – Maps & Plans, Climate around the World, Weather, Farming in Britain
  • Monastic Life – Norwich Cathedral tour
  • Easton College Farm – Geography trip
  • Puppet Making Workshop at Norwich Puppet Theatre
  • Forest experience day at Thetford Forest
  • ‘Adventurous’ Residential at the Hilltop Outdoor Centre in Sheringham 


Form 1 (Year 4) 

  • Science – Teeth & Digestion, Healthy Eating, Rocks & Soil, Plant Life Cycle, Photosynthesis, Light & Colour
  • History – Historical Inquiry, Celts & Romans, Anglo Saxons, Vikings
  • Geography – The School Environment, Map Skills 2, A Village in India
  • How Hill - Geographical & Bushcraft Skills - residential
  • Eco-Tech Centre ­– geographical trip
  • Theatre trip
  • Ski Trip – (optional) 


Form 2 (Year 5) 

  • Science – Scientific skills, Senses & the Brain, Electricity, Arthropods
  • History – Tudors & Stuarts, Aztecs
  • Geography – What is Geography, Mapping, Settlements, The Norfolk Broads
  • Creative writing workshops
  • Holt Hall – residential field trip
  • Kentwell Hall – Tudor day
  • Natural History Museum – science trip
  • Leadership Day
  • Ski Trip – (optional)
  • Watersports trip to Spain- (optional) 


Form 3 (Year 6) 

  • Science – Healthy Lifestyle (inc. Heart and Circulation), Skeleton & Muscles, Reproduction, Solids, Liquids & Gases, Forces, Future Evolution, Science Fair
  • History – The Victorians, World War II
  • Geography – Weathering Process, Peaks Trip, Earthquakes, Brazil
  • Peak District – residential field trip
  • Gressenhall – Victorian Day
  • Tate Modern – art trip
  • France - cultural trip (residential)
  • Ski Trip – (optional)
  • Watersports trip to Spain- (optional)