As a parent when can I come into the school?
The school is open from Monday to Friday between 8:45-15:30. Morning drop off is from 8.45 to 9.00. Children and adults will only allowed in prior to this time, in an emergency, e.g. for use of toilet facilities.
If you wish to drop your children before 8.45, they must be booked in to the breakfast club (which is from 8:15-8:45)
Should you arrive early we recommend the Spa Fields playground or one of the many cafés in Exmouth Market.
This is in line with English school policies. Parents should come into the school to say goodbye to their children, help them hang their coats and get ready to enter their class.
Pick up will be from the playground, between 15.00 and 15.30 unless your child attends our After School Club.
Will my child make the same progress as their peers in Denmark?
When children move to a new country and need to learn a new language, they will naturally experience a change in their rate of learning. Before children can learn to read and write in their new language, they will need to learn to speak it. We focus on the child’s development of spoken English and to settle emotionally. We strive to develop good habits right from the time children arrive at Dania School.
Though we teach Danish everyday, we do not follow the Danish curriculum as precisely as children would experience in a Danish School, mainly because we have much fewer Danish lessons (and many more English lessons) than in a Danish school.
Will my child make the same progress as their peers in England?
We follow the same curriculum and assess the children every term. Through this process, the teachers make an individual tracking system that allows the children to develop as fully as possible. Our school emphasizes both the social and emotional development of the children in and their academic success.
Is it a Danish school?
We are a visionary school combining British, Scandinavian and Montessori methods in our teaching. We follow the National (British) Curriculum framework and we differentiate the learning goals for each child according to their former school experience, first language and age.
We teach Danish on a daily basis alongside implementing the framework of the Danish Goals of Purpose and we follow an adapted version of the learning goals for Danish language as a first language.
*Please see our teaching style to understand more about our process.
What type of teaching style do you use?
Prepared Environment: We prepare the environment to suit the children’s learning needs.
We have many different spaces suited for their developmental age. We have natural light, small tables, and beanbags, which allow the children to work in the best way possible. For example, if a child needs quiet time to read, they can visit our library, if a child needs to work on our carpet area, they may do so using a clipboard or a floor mat.
We are extremely lucky to have a fantastic playground at Dania School.
We have a large range of materials that enhances the children’s physical development, which range from fine motor skills to gross motor skills.
2) Freedom with responsibility
We teach children how to be a member of their community. We do so by teaching children to be responsible for their actions and freedom. We focus heavily on giving the children the ownership when resolving conflict. If they hurt a friend, they need to use the Peace Flower (talking stick) when resolving the conflict with their peers. This method assists everyone involved in the conflict, where they have equal chances to stating the facts.
3) We have four main cohorts (groups). We have Early Years, which consists of Preschool known as Twinkle Stars (3-4 year olds) and Reception known as Shooting Starts (4 & 5 year olds). Our Primary group is split into two distinct groups Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2. In Key Stage 1 known as Stellanova (5-7 year olds) and Key Stage 2 known Supernova (7-9 year olds).
We accept children who are 3 years old, or from the term they turn 3, to join our preschool program. We have two-trained nursery teachers, one pedagogic teacher and one Early Years teacher. One teacher will communicate with the children in Danish and the other in English. Our approach is to prepare children so that they are prepared for life in general and school life in particular,
We are inspired by the Montessori approach, where children are in a safe and prepared environment. Everything you see in the classroom is purposeful and mindful of children’s learning styles. We have small tables and chairs, rugs for floor work, pre-made laminated materials and counting beads. The children are encouraged to clean up after themselves and participate in making their environment ready for the next day.
We follow the National Curriculum’s framework and differentiate the learning goals for different abilities. Each child is taught in their mixed aged class and extended through different tasks. Differentiated Learning means to personalise the learning goal within a lesson.
How do you achieve bilingual learning?
We aim to have English teaching in the morning and Danish subjects taught in the afternoon.
Children who are not already bilingual are advised to join for a preschool year to help developing both Danish and English language prior to starting reception. Any child starting reception without prior knowledge of Danish will be asked to join an intensive
‘Danish as a foreign language” course, for the first four weeks at Dania School. After this time they will be expected to join two weekly after school sessions where Danish will be taught to support learning. The cost for this additional Danish teaching, will be chargeable. The children who need more support with English will join our English Additional Language sessions during school time. We also have Danish as a Foreign Language class during school time.
In the children’s schedule we offer one weekly in school lessons of foreign language, either Danish or English to continuously develop pupils newest language in addition to the daily Danish and English classes.
Do you teach any additional third language?
Children who enter Key stage 2, and are deemed bilingual by Dania School, will have a good foundation for learning a third language. We will offer Introduction to French.
What year group will my child be in?
We have children of the same ages but with very different schooling and educational backgrounds. We offer mixed aged classes according to ability and developmental stage. The advantage of mixed age groups is also to strengthen social skills and the pupil’s personal development.
Why do you have a birthday present policy?
The birthday policy was introduced to avoid a large amount of money being spent on small gifts over the school year, by each parent. Instead every parent buys one large gift, costing around £35 once a year for one other child at the school. The list of who buys for whom, is supplied at the beginning of the school year. It is the responsibility of the parents who’s child’s birthday is coming up, to supply a list of birthday wishes, to the parent buying the present, at least two weeks in advance of the birthday. The present must be wrapped and brought to school at the morning of the birthday.
This means that children invited to Dania School pupils birthday parties outside school, are not expected to bring additional presents.
What is our 5-year plan?
We are in our current building until the end of the school year 2016. We are working on several parallel options, including an extended lease, a new leased building in the area and fundraising for purchasing land to build a new school. The aim is for Dania School to stay near its current location and that is what we are actively working towards.
How is your school funded?
Through tuition fees and private donations.
We rely on volunteers and parents to help with many aspects of the day to day running of Dania School.
We do not receive any funding from the British or the Danish Governments.
Dania School is a charity, what does that mean?
Dania School is a registered Charity, with the charity commission, Charity Number 1153166.
– We have charitably aims for education, including putting 10% of our surplus towards fee bursaries for children of low-income families. Personal application must be made to the board, which will consider each application carefully.
– Many of the regular staff, including the Proprietor, the Board and many volunteers are not paid a wage.
– We are accountable for all spending and must always be mindful of any expenses and seek to obtain the best price, prior to purchasing
– All donations made to the school are entitled to gift aid and the person making the donation is entitled to tax relief on the full amount donated, if paying income tax in the UK.
– Please ask in the office for details