Parkside Pussdog sessions are full of fun and exploration and are a wonderful introduction to life in Pre Prep. These themed weekly sessions are designed to help your child with their transition from Pre-school to Reception.
Who is Pussdog?
Pussdog is our School Mascot, who is part pussy cat and part dog and can be seen living in the shield of our logo. Parkside Pussdogs is made up of our current Pre-schoolers and our specialist Reception and Early Years teachers. Their sessions offer a taster of life in Reception class.
What are Parkside Pussdog Sessions?
Parkside Pussdog weekly sessions are stimulating, friendly and fun, where a curiosity and passion for learning is inspired and nurtured. Your son will enjoy hands-on activities including arts and crafts, messy play, science, sport, drama and music, swimming and much more. All six sessions follow a continuation of the Early Years Curriculum, which concludes at the end of the Reception year.
Your son will join our current Pre-school children (Owls) at their weekly Taster sessions and each session will have a different theme. This will give a good overview of life in our Pre Prep department, which was rated “excellent” by the Independent School Inspectorate.
Themes for the sessions :
|IT / Science
|Arts & Crafts
Drama & Performing Arts
Why come along?
These sessions will facilitate a smooth transition from Nursery / Pre-school into Pre Prep by building their social skills and confidence. The children will make new friends and explore the magical surroundings of the Pre Prep environment. This will lay the foundations for learning and prepare them for starting school. Our specialist teachers will help them to familiarise themselves with new surroundings, which will ease their transition and reassure them when taking the next step in their educational journey.
Who runs them?
The sessions are led by our experienced Early Years team within our Pre Prep Department; in the Reception classrooms, Library and break out area. Forest school will be outdoors in parts of our 45 acres of grounds, swimming will be in our 20 metre on site swimming pool (cpmplete with floats and swimming aids) and playtime takes place in the Pre Prep adventure playground. Each week will introduce a new theme hosted by our specialist teachers to give them a taster of the EYFS curriculum and teaching styles at Parkside School.
Meet the Team
Mrs Madeline McMurdo - Deputy Head & Head of Pre Prep
Mrs McMurdo joined Parkside School in 2005 and has extensive professional and personal experience of our School (both of her boys attended). With a specialist interest in Early Years Foundation Stage, she also oversees the running of the whole School as Deputy Head. Mrs McMurdo has a wonderful relationship with Parkside families, loves to travel, keep fit and spending time in the great outdoors.
Mrs Manwaring - Head of Reception Class
Mrs Manwaring has worked at Parkside for 3 years. She has spent all of this time as a Reception Teacher and is exceptional with helping children to settle to their new environment and preparing them for the next step in their school journey. Mrs Manwaring loves the performing arts, animals and reading thrillers!
Miss Phoebe Janssen - Reception Teaching Assistant
Phoebe is the Reception class Teaching Assistant and is currently studying for her PGCE. She started working in Parkside's Nursery 5 years ago and then moved up to Reception and adores working with the children there. Phoebe knows Parkside and the children extremely well and loves to go shopping, listen to music and spend time with her friends and family.
Mr Dan Leek - Director of Sport
Mr Leek joined us in 2022 and teaches sport throughout the School; from Nursery to Year 8. He has been teaching sport in schools for many years, following a career as a professional rugby player (Wasps). Mr Leek is passionate about developing strong values of sportsmanship and a positive attitude towards sport for life. He is a firm believer that sport should be at the heart of the School's curriculum and this should start from Nursery upwards. Mr Leek teaches Parkside children from Nursery to Year 8.
Mr Ryan Twomey - Head of Performing Arts
Mr Twomey started at Parkside in 2014 and teaches Performing Arts throughout the School from Reception to Year 8. With his passion for music, dance and drama, he organises and delivers productions every term throughout the academic year representing each Year Group. Mr Twomey also runs our popular drama group during the holidays, 'Drama Kings'.
Mr Sam Grace - Forest School Teacher
Mr Grace joined Parkside in 2003 and is passionate about the great outdoors. He teaches Forest School to the younger Year Groups; Nursery to Year 4. Mr Grace is also Head of Art and often combines the two; teaching the boys about using nature in art, wood working and creativity within the forest. Mr Grace and the boys can often be seen within the 45 acres of grounds building dens and making fires.
Mr Luff - Head of Swimming
Mr Luff has worked at Parkside School for 21 years, teaching swimming as part of our curriculum, as well as teaching after school swimming clubs. He teaches all of the children from Nursery to Year 8, focussing on learning the different strokes of swimming, training for stamina, preparation for galas and other water based fixtures such as water polo. Not only is this an important life skill, but also many Parkside boys have continued their swimming to a competitive level. Mr Luff trains our elite swimming team as well as nurturing the love for this important sport.
Mr Alex Gainer - Head of IT & Mr Will Davies - Head of Science
Mr Gainer is Head of IT and teaches children from Nursery to Year 8. He has worked for Parkside for almost 15 years and is also a member of our SLT Team as Assistant Head of Operations and Digital Strategy. Mr Gainer is a keen cook and hosts his own YouTube Channel all about food.
Mr Davies is Head of Science and a member of our SLT Team as Assistant Head of Pastoral. Mr Davies joined us in 2021 and has a wonderful relationship with the boys throughout the School. Following his career in the army, Mr Davies decided to try his hand at teaching and has not looked back since!
When do the Parkside Pussdogs have their sessions?
Starting from Friday 2 February 2024: every Friday during term time, between 9.30am and 11am.
Who are the sessions for?
Parkside Pussdog sessions are tailor made for boys aged 3-4 years old, who are about to finish Pre School and are preparing to start school in September 2024.
How much do they cost?
Sessions cost £10 per session or £50 for all 6 sessions. However, if you have registered your son to start at Parkside School, the sessions are free of charge.
This includes all materials, resources as well as a snack and drink.
To book, please fill in the form below or e-mail our Registrar, Mrs Lindre Scott or call us on the number below.