Boys’ Pastoral Care

Exceptional pastoral care is central to the life of Eaton House The Manor Boys’ School. We believe that happy and confident boys perform better and recognise that happy minds are essential for children’s well-being.

Building confidence and self-belief with an emphasis on positive feedback and rewards is intrinsic in all we do. There is a strong culture of teachers and parents working together to ensure pupils’ welfare; our open-door policy means that parents can feel fully involved from the outset.

Our friendly teaching staff are excellent role models and are the first point of contact for our pupils and parents. Every boy is known and championed, which means that we soon learn to understand what makes him tick as an individual. We understand his interests and his ambitions and we aim to light a spark to help him fuel them. We believe that with the right level of welfare every boy can find his passion and learn to excel in his chosen area. With our support, boys grow in self-belief and maturity.

Kindergarten boys are invited to a new boys’ tea in the term before they start school, giving them the opportunity to meet their teacher and ensure a smooth transition from their nursery school. Our buddy system helps to integrate the newest boys into the school from the very beginning. The youngest boys are paired with the oldest boys, which helps to promote friendship and foster a greater sense of belonging and a more inclusive school community.

Beyond the form teacher, a well-established house system provides the overarching structure for effective and consistent pastoral care. On entry boys join one of four houses (Arundel, Balmoral, Stirling or Windsor). Siblings are automatically placed in the same house, allowing whole families to support individual houses at school events.

Our housemistresses and housemasters hold regular house meetings and there are various special house events throughout the year, which include many competitions and challenges in music, sport and other subjects.

The head of house is an important figure in a boy’s life and someone he can turn to for guidance and support as well as noticing the positive impact that he is having as part of his house team and rewarding him accordingly.

These child-focused activities and support structures are the foundations of our excellent pastoral care, ensuring that the years spent at Eaton House The Manor are happy and inspiring, enabling every boy to fulfil his potential, both academically and socially.

Form Teacher

At Eaton House The Manor we want each boy to feel noticed and nurtured. Strong pastoral care, clear boundaries and high expectations are key to achieving this.

All our staff take responsibility for the pastoral care of the boys, with form teachers and house masters and mistresses playing key roles.

The welfare and happiness of boys in the school is obviously not the sole responsibility of one person. However, the form teacher is in a unique position to develop much closer bonds with the boys in their charge. Form teachers are available to listen to or discuss with boys any matters that arise within the school and to relate relevant points to their parents and the staff where appropriate.

House System

There are four Houses in the School: Arundel (yellow), Balmoral (green), Stirling (blue) and Windsor (red). All the boys belong to a house, and brothers are generally placed in the same house as their older brothers or sisters.

House meetings take place regularly, led by the house masters and mistresses, and they play a vital role in the day-to-day life of the school and pastoral care of the boys. Each term there are a number of house competitions, which are always fiercely contested! Every term the boys contribute to the house boards by entering the house art competition. These boards can be viewed in the main corridors of the Pre-Prep. Events will generally follow this programme:

 

Autumn term

  • Art board competition
  • Football
  • Dodgeball
  • Poetry competition
  • Basketball
  • Public speaking
  • General knowledge quiz: Mind over Manor

Spring term

  • Art board competition
  • Rugby
  • Basketball
  • Cross-country
  • Singing competition
  • Music
  • Chess competition
  • Hockey
  • Benchball
  • Debating

Summer term

  • House art board competition
  • Cricket
  • Inter-house challenge
  • Sports day
  • Swimming (Years 3, 4 and 5)
  • Maths (Years 6 and 7)
  • Poetry competition
  • House trips

The head of house champions each boy in his role as part of a team and his allocated house where many of his friendships will be made. They praise boys, reward success and offer a helping hand or a steer when it is needed.

The head of house also plays an important role in ensuring that every boy is on track and supporting his chosen house with pride and verve.

In order to effectively support our co-curricular programme there is close communication between form teachers and heads of houses, ensuring that every child can gain the most from the opportunities on offer.

Buddy System

From first entering the school, every Kindergarten boy is assigned an older boy from Year 3 to be his ‘buddy’. Our buddy system ensures our younger children feel welcomed into the school and that they feel valued and supported from the outset.

The buddy system contributes to the nurturing and caring ethos of the school and develops positive cross-age relationships. Through looking after the younger children, the older boys have the opportunity to practise the important values of respect, friendship and responsibility, as well as building self-confidence and developing empathy and compassion.

The Kindergarten boys and their Year 3 buddies spend time together during the school day. The older boys will accompany the younger boys to lunch, where they will sit with them, talk to them and assist them in collecting their food and clearing away. Buddies attend house meetings together and in the first few weeks play together at break times. A wonderful friendship is formed and these friendships often continue for the rest of the time in the Pre-Prep and into the Prep School.

Well-being

We are in a time where there is a huge amount of pressure on our children and this can create a negative impact on both their mental and their physical health. We take the issue of well-being extremely seriously and work closely with outside organisations and professionals to ensure that we provide every support possible to our boys to enable them learn strong mechanisms to support the various elements in their lives.

We hope that this will ultimately provide the foundations required for a healthy body and mind as they grow through teenagehood and into valuable members of the adult community.

We will utilise form time, assemblies, PSHEE lessons or time on the sports field, taking every opportunity discuss the importance of regular exercise, sleep, hydration and a balanced diet. We are all aware of the press concerning technology, and particularly screen time, and how this has become an increasingly common feature in our boys’ lives. We are very proactive in our delivery of e-safety guidance to boys and parents alike. Forming positive, healthy habits at a young age is vital, and as many of these habits will be carried on at home as much as at school, our ethos is very much to share information and suggestions with parents whenever possible.

Celebrating success

We nurture strong self-esteem by ensuring we celebrate successes. From awarding house points and displaying work on classroom walls to ‘good shows’ with the heads, the confidence boost that comes from being recognised in public is something we never underestimate.

School rules, our work with the local community, and our wider relationship with global issues support our boys and their development as purposeful young men who will have the best interests of those around them at heart.

Emotional resilience is a key aspect of well-being and by providing our boys with all the tools they need to develop this we can help equip them to deal with challenges when they are faced.

Developing relationships with other boys and staff requires commitment, patience, empathy and humour, elements that are modelled by the staff and emulated by the pupils. When difficulties do arise, we aim to resolve any issues in a speedy and effective manner. The pastoral care demonstrated by all our staff means that the boys can feel secure in the knowledge they will be listened to, supported and treated fairly.

Helping boys find their own area of interest

The link between pastoral care and co-curricular ensure that we promote positive mental health through assisting our boys to find their own area of interest. Being deeply engaged by an academic subject, an extracurricular club or a particular school-based event allows the boys to lose themselves in their favoured activity, and these feelings of excitement and enthusiasm can very much strengthen an individual’s sense of well-being.