Prep School - BJAB - British Junior Academy of Brussels

The Prep School

Years 5 to 8

The curriculum


BJAB follows the National Curriculum for England with adaptations for an international school. The curriculum is taught in English and specialist teaching is given to children for whom English is not their first language. Children with experience of other school systems will adapt well to BJAB’s approach. Likewise, children are expertly prepared to progress to all other international curricula, such as IB, Cambridge, and the Belgian and French systems. Our standardised assessments are internationally recognised and respected. 

Each class is assigned a Form Tutor and pupils are additionally supported by a range of specialist teachers for each subject in the curriculum in support of BJAB’s pursuit of high academic standards. The National Curriculum is enhanced with the ISEB curriculum, so that pupils who are planning to apply to UK independent schools will be familiar with the curriculum. BJAB Prep maintains the ethos of pastoral care and support for which the BJAB family is renowned.

Teachers produce schemes of work each term detailing the areas of the curriculum to be covered and what topics will be used to devise interesting and inspiring activities and lessons.

Choose a subject below to learn more.


Pupils build on their strong foundations in reading, writing, speaking and listening by following a rigorous programme of studying language and literature in Key Stage 3. After securing their knowledge of genre through comprehension and creative writing, pupils study canonical texts and literary genres in depth. The underlying aim of our English curriculum is to nurture comprehension skills to raise awareness of the world around them.

When immersed in our English curriculum, pupils in Key Stage 3 develop:

  • oral skills so that the pupils are confident participants and responsive listeners
  • fluency in a range of reading, both fiction and nonfiction
  • an enjoyment of la variety of literature, novels, plays, short stories and poetry
  • the ability to produce a range of types of writing, appropriate to purpose and audience

Pupils study an ambitious curriculum designed to create confident and creative mathematicians. After embedding key ideas about the structure of number and calculation, pupils apply their skills in a wide range of contexts such as measurement, algebra, statistics, probability, ratio and proportion. Pupils receive regular time to consolidate and extend their understanding of these areas. Our pupils will develop an appreciation and awareness of mathematics in many aspects of life and be able to achieve a high standard of numeracy and develop other mathematical skills.

The National Curriculum for Mathematics aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, including through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time, so that pupils develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately
  • reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language
  • can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication

In Years 7 and 8, students follow a bespoke curriculum that extends the ISEB and UK National Curriculum. Lesson resources provide pupils with challenging teaching that is set above age-level expectations. 


In Upper Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3, pupils are introduced to the discrete fields of Biology, Chemistry and Physics and therefore look at a variety of topics. They acquire knowledge of key concepts of scientific thinking, as well as studying the scientists and applications of the theory studied. Pupils will carry out experiments in our Science Laboratory and form conclusions based on data. Pupils will focus on planning scientific enquiry, learning to control variables in experiments, measuring accurately and precisely with a variety of equipment, recording data and using scientific diagrams, and drawing conclusions based on test results. 


We teach skills in computing in order for pupils to be ready for the 21st century. Dedicated computing lessons are blended with integration of technology across core subjects. We have a wealth of resources to facilitate this: including state-of-the-art whiteboards for teaching, student laptops and iPads.

The core of computing is computer science, in which pupils are taught the principles of information and computation, how digital systems work, and how to put this knowledge to use through programming. Building on this knowledge and understanding, pupils are equipped to use information technology to create programs, systems and a range of content.

Art and Music

In the Prep School, pupils are introduced to key movements, concepts and techniques in the arts. There is an equal emphasis on the appreciation and creation of the various art forms, with specialised lessons on art history to encourage pupils to contextualise pieces within artistic movements. This is achieved through explicit teaching, space for pupils to explore ideas and feedback that allows pupils to develop their skills in these different subject areas. Our specialist art teacher encourages artistic creativity through exploration of different mediums, with individualised feedback and critique.

Music is studied in depth at the practical and theoretical level. Pupils enjoy a weekly choir and have the opportunity to explore different instruments throughout the world. They will also be familiarised with great classical and contemporary composers.


Pupils develop a secure sense of chronology and place through the careful and detailed study of historical periods and geographical themes. Pupils learn about diverse history topics such as Medieval Europe, the Chinese Qing Dynasty, and the Russian Revolution. Our geography curriculum encourages pupils to think critically about climate issues, natural disasters, human migration, and contemporary geopolitics. 

Classical Civilisation

Pupils have the opportunity to develop their knowledge of ‘The Greats’ and develop a real understanding of the Western cultural heritage upon which our society is based. In Classical Civilisation, pupils acquire the ability to read, understand and translate Latin. This is complemented with the study of the Roman Civilisation. In Philosophy, pupils are exposed to key ideas within Western thought and are provided an opportunity to scrutinisedebate and reflect on what the learn.


In the Prep School, our specialist French teachers immerse pupils in the target language in order to provide a sound base for their future in language learning. With differentiated classes, the level aims to be challenging and interesting for all students, whether they are beginners or confident, native speakers. We teach in a way which covers the basic topics in an accelerated fashion. It revises the topics studied in a new way and introduces the written word and adds new vocabulary to these topics. At the same time, it is simple enough for new pupils to follow. Fluent French speakers will be exposed to French culture and literature.

Physical Education

Pupils receive ample opportunity to spend time outdoors and to develop their sporting skills in a variety of ways. Both specialist teaching and specialist facilities allow pupils to become competent and confident at swimming, net games, contact and non-contact sports, gymnastics and dance. In addition to this, pupils receive opportunities to play against other local schools on a competitive level.

English as an Additional Language (EAL)
Our recent ISI inspection praised our EAL teaching as exciting and innovative. Only a small number of pupils receive intensive support: progress is so rapid the majority of pupils are learning together. One of the reasons why children at BJAB make such rapid progress, even from a base of little or even no English language, is the close and supportive environment at the heart of the school. BJAB’s ethos and values create a safe and happy place where children make friends quickly, learn how to collaborate with others and seek appropriate support from teachers and other adults. In some cases, children make progress with a dedicated EAL teacher and a separate lesson. Ms Lambrechts is BJAB’s specialist EAL teacher and has many years of experience in how to spot gaps in pupils’ knowledge and secure the building blocks of language they need to move forward. Her lessons are full of visual games and exercises that build on the pupil’s prior knowledge and help them to cope with bi-lingualism.

A Day at the Prep School


The schedule below reflects a sample day for one of our Key Stage 3 classes. Timetables change each year and are provided to parents at the start of the school year. 


8:00 Arrival at school & settling in to class
8:30 French Culture
9:30 Science
10:30 Morning break & snack (on the playground)
11:00 English
12:00 Mathematics
1:00 Lunch (in the refectory)
1:30 Afternoon break (on the playground)
2:00 Humanities
3:00 Computing
4:00 Dismissal
4:10 Enrichment: Netball
5:00 – 6:00 Garderie


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