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Peterhouse Boys

Academic Overview

Academic Overview

Peterhouse prides itself in the excellent quality of its academic education. Boys and girls, of all abilities are encouraged to demand much of themselves with the aim of reaching their full academic/intellectual potential. At all levels whenever possible pupils are streamed or set so that the brightest can be stretched/extended and the less bright can be given appropriate support and guidance.

Pupils are encouraged to think for themselves and to take responsibility for their own learning rather than rely on their teacher. Teaching staff in turn are expected to create a dynamic and creative environment for learning and to demand much of their pupils and tutees.

In addition to their main A level choices pupils are able to follow either an AS course in English language, French language or Global Perspectives.
The Senior Master (Academic) coordinates all matters academic and is responsible for ensuring that Peterhouse keeps abreast of all the latest developments in education. Peterhouse Boys accepts pupils with a wide range of academic abilities. Those requiring extra Mathematics or English (reading or spelling) have support lessons in their first year and some continue with this into their second year.

We recognize that some of our pupils are not as academically gifted as others, so we cater for them by offering them a slightly more limited range of subjects. This gives extra time on the timetable and the pupils are given extra lessons in English and mathematics.

Academic Structure
D Block (Form 1) comprises 4 streamed classes that have a full range of subjects offered. Class sizes are rarely above 24. C Block (Form 2) comprises 4 classes (set according to ability in English and Mathematics). At the end of the year choices are made for IGCSE (Cambridge Assessment International Examinations). Boys are set to ensure class sizes are kept as small as possible. B Block (Form 3) is the first year of preparation for CAIE – IGCSE. A Block (Form 4) CAIE-IGCSE examinations written by all boys. In the Vth Form 3 or 4 AS level subjects are written. 3 of these are taken on to A level in VIth Form.

Educational Trips
We feel that an all-round education involves experience beyond the classroom, so a number of exciting educational trips are taken either annually or periodically, both inside and outside Zimbabwe.

A Level Geographers and Biologists regularly attend a camp at RIFA in the Zambezi Valley in early August, looking at various aspects of ecology and river landforms and processes. Our A level Travel and Tourism classes make a number of visits to resorts both locally and outside the country..

Art is a very practical and creative subject, and our department frequently takes pupils on trips to art galleries, sculpture gardens and parks. Our own conservation areas of Gosho Park and Calderwood Park provide plenty of scope for both artistic and scientific field trips, and is close enough to allow short duration trips during lesson times to look at a specific feature of the parks. Over the past few years we have run cultural, History and French trips to Europe.

Tutor System
The tutor system employed at Peterhouse Boys is designed to give each pupil a sense of belonging. The tutor groups are composed of between 10 and 16 pupils in the same House. Each group is assigned a Tutor, who usually also carries out pastoral duties in the boarding House where his tutees live.

The Tutor Groups meet formally once a fortnight during the day, and on a number of other occasions in the evening in the boarding house. The tutor acts as a link between the pupil and his Housemaster, and regularly discusses academic progress with the pupils on an individual basis, thereby being able to pick up on problems in the pupil's academic life early on in their careers.

Quite often the tutor will meet with pupils to discuss other things, such as social problems, concerns over family problems etc. In addition, the tutor will often discuss important social issues with the group, on such topics as drug abuse, smoking, binge drinking etc., in an effort to instill social awareness into the group.

The Alpha Programme (Curriculum Support)
The Alpha Programme is designed to identify, support, guide and give confidence building extra lessons to the D and C Block boys in Mathematics and English.

Career Guidance
A Careers Library is open to boys of all ages. Age appropriate careers related topics are discussed in our life-Skills programme, and in addition in the Upper School the pupils are encouraged to find for themselves the most suitable courses in their chosen areas, assisted by frequent visits and talks from universities and employers.
In addition, help is given in the completion of Application Forms for Universities and other further education centres.