It is of vital importance that the first few days at Eaton House Belgravia Pre-Prep and Prep are successful for the boys and their parents.
Some boys feel excited in the run-up to school and can't wait to join the 'big boys' as they move up from Eaton House Belgravia Nursery. Others are more cautious and need more coaxing before they get used to the school routines. This is where our buddy system really comes into its own.
During their first days at Eaton House Belgravia Pre-Prep, all the boys will be helped to settle in by teachers and older boys alike. Each boy has an older 'buddy' who helps him to learn the ways of the school and answers any questions that he may have, in a very patient and gentle way.
At the transition to Prep, again, each boy will be assigned an older buddy to help smooth the transition from one school to the next.
Buddies are always very proud of the new boy that they take under their wing, and they are always very excited to meet the boy they have been allocated.
A number of the activities in the early days are designed to settle boys into their class and to help them bond with their fellow pupils.
We remind the boys about making good choices and emphasise that they are in control of the decisions that they make. We make sure that they know that they have a responsibility to make good decisions, supported by their peers.
The golden rules
Buddies are always on hand to help if a boy is unsure about the right or the wrong way to go about things. The golden rules – our school rules that set the general standard of behaviour – are a good pointer. They are:
- Do be gentle.
- Do be kind and helpful.
- Do work hard.
- Do look after property.
- Do listen to people.
- Do be honest.
Buddies can advise on all the rules and protocols of lunchtime, for example, so that the boys don't always have to ask teachers for answers (although answers are always kindly given by teachers if KGs do ask).
In Year 1 a buddy is there for his KG in every way, and it is tremendously reassuring for the littlest boys to learn that as their first lesson on the very first day at Eaton House Belgravia Pre-Prep. Again, at the start of Prep School, the buddy is there to help smooth the transition.