‘SPREADING THEIR WINGS’ – The Falcons School for Girls’ motto, “London’s most creative preparatory school”, is more than just a headline; it is integral to the ethos of the school and its goal of achieving academic excellence.
Creativity at Falcons Girls takes many forms. It isn’t simply about the arts, it is about a creative life-long journey to achieve academic success and follows the definition by Sir Ken Robinson of creativity as “the process of having original ideas that have value”. The performing arts are strongly represented at the school: 95% of the girls play an instrument; the whole-school production – which takes place every summer – is staged in a professional theatre; and there is ballet for all the girls in pre-prep. Alongside this, the school’s creative arts curriculum includes design and technology days when the girls can create and construct.
The focus on creativity is academic, economic and personal. The school believes that whatever their pupils’ passions, faith in their ability to be creative – to write a song, paint a picture or code a game – is key to a happy and satisfying life. As a result of this focus, girls are able to approach school projects with confidence that whatever medium they love to work in, the school will embrace their ideas. Examples have included the use of video, animation, cooking, sculpture and dance to approach and address projects ranging from volcanoes to World War II.
Another of the school’s missions is to develop leaders who can identify the problem that everyone else around the boardroom table is missing (or is too afraid to point out) and entrepreneurs who can seize new opportunities. Many girls have embraced this philosophy and taken on mini-enterprise initiatives this year: the head girl set up a milkshake business; two girls in year 4 sold keyrings at the recent summer fair to raise funds for a wildlife charity; and another girl in year 4 recently made and sold friendship bracelets for a rhino reserve she had visited during the Easter holidays. The pupils have learned valuable lessons regarding marketing, budgeting and consumer relations, but have also embraced the wider community, understanding the importance of social responsibility.
Competition for places at senior schools is fierce but at 11+ Falcons girls shine in entrance examinations and interviews and move on to some of London’s top day and boarding schools, thanks to the school’s focus on creativity and lessons in philosophy, which enhance pupils’ critical thinking and reasoning expertise.
“THE SCHOOL’S FOCUS ON CREATIVITY IS ACADEMIC,
ECONOMIC AND PERSONAL”
With specialist teachers in all subjects, girls benefit from the range of expertise on offer, from maths and science through to geography and history. With a stateof- the-art laboratory, the school places great importance on exposing the girls to the important STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and maths). During a recent, extremely successful “women in STEM” day, mums, family friends and external speakers visited the school to talk to the girls about their roles in these crucial areas and this has ignited passion and enthusiasm for these subjects in the pupils.
The Falcons School for Girls adopts a meaningful approach to homework, which enhances learning from the day’s lessons and encourages the girls to seek out further information themselves. This requires a very dedicated and personalised approach to each girl’s development and is something upon which the school really prides itself.