Life in Year 1

Useful information for parents and children in Year 1 2024-25

In Year 1, children experience a more formal, although equally stimulating environment. English and Mathematics continue to have priority, although much is taught in a cross curricular approach. Practical work using Numicon in maths or phonics games in English continue to excite the children’s learning. We follow our own curriculum, promoting high levels of achievement and effort and celebrating children’s successes as they acquire key skills.

In Year 1, emphasis is on key knowledge and skills in English and mathematics and reading is given high priority with pupils and teachers selecting a new book each day from our extensive range. The partnership with parents continues and regular homework in spelling and linked to classwork is set each week.

Pupils are taught through half termly topics, each focusing on history, geography or science. Topics are carefully chosen to both appeal to and challenge the children and include Space, The African Savannah and The Great Fire of London. Again, emphasis is placed on exploring and practical activity and the children enjoy a range of art and creative tasks connected to the topic work they are doing.

Alongside work in the classroom, pupils have lessons with subject specialists in PE, French, music and swimming. The curriculum is further enhanced with co-curricular opportunities such as judo and cookery.

We are looking forward to you and your child joining Year 1 at The Mall School. We hope you will find this booklet helpful but if you have any other questions please contact the school.

The best way to contact you ’s teacher is by email:

1CT           Mrs Courtney

1CT           Mrs Topsch

Start to the Day

Children should be delivered to the junior playground. Pupils should arrive no earlier than 8.25 am when there will be a member of staff on duty, and no later than 8.35 am. Children must not be left on their own until the teacher is on duty. The pupils then enter the building with their class teacher who collects them. Registration is at 8.40 am each day.

Before School

We offer a breakfast club from 7.30 am as well as a before school service from 8.00 am to 8.25 am for all children from Reception to Year 3. Further details are available from our Extra Curricular Co-ordinator (


If a child is ill parents must notify the school welfare officer immediately (, stating the nature of the illness. Parents are asked to confirm by email any absence of more than three consecutive days.

All requests for leave of absence for children should be addressed to the Headmaster, at least one week in advance – leave of absence for periods of time adjacent to school holidays will not normally be granted.

Additional Support

At various stages during their school career some pupils may find parts of the curriculum more demanding and they will have the opportunity to receive some additional teaching support. The children’s parents will be informed of this and feedback on their progress will be forthcoming via parents’ evenings, termly meetings with the appropriate staff and the school reports.

A child who has English as an additional language and is experiencing difficulties in class as a result may need to receive extra support. There will be a charge for this service. Parents will be contacted and, once the support is in place, there will be feedback from the appropriate staff as described above.

After School Care

After school club is available daily running from 3.00 pm to 6.00 pm. After school club operates on a drop in basis. Any child not collected will join the after school club and a charge will be made for this additional supervision. There is a range of after school activity clubs available at an extra charge, including swimming, chess, judo, Minecraft, dance, debate, and fencing. All clubs are booked on a termly basis. Further details are available from our Extra Curricular Co-ordinator (


Staff operate a positive rewards system which recognises and encourages pupils’ behaviour, hard work and progress. In the summer term of Year 1, the children are introduced to the school’s credit system and begin to receive credits for their houses. Pupils are awarded certificates in weekly assemblies in recognition of their good behaviour, hard work and achievements. However, pupils are not always perfectly behaved and if they make the wrong choices they may receive a verbal reprimand, be kept back at break or be spoken to by the Deputy Head. If such behaviour is persistent, the class teacher will, of course, inform parents.

Break and Lunches

Pupils should bring a healthy fruit or vegetable snack (no nuts) and a bottle of water (not juice) each day.

Lunch is on a cafeteria system with children going into lunch by year group. There is a choice of food available with one meat and one vegetarian option provided and with some adult guidance the Year 1 children choose their own lunch. Food is freshly prepared on the school premises and the school has a healthy eating policy. Further catering information is to be found on our website as are the daily menus. The school is able to operate nut-free catering but parents of children with food allergies must inform the school in writing with full details, so that any risk can be assessed. To support children with nut allergies, parents are asked never to send nuts or products containing nuts to school as snacks.


Communication to parents is via email, a whole school weekly newsletter and the school website. The school subscribes to ClarionCall, a text-based service, which enables us to contact parents quickly in an emergency or when there has been an unexpected change to the school routine (for example cancellation of games, late return from a school trip, etc.).

Should you wish to speak to your child’s class teacher, please email them to make an appointment. Please allow 24 hours for a response but we will normally respond as soon as we can.

Parents will also receive a Year 1 fortnightly news update which gives details of what they have been studying over the last 2 weeks and what they will be studying for the next 2 weeks.

End of the Day

Year 1 pupils will be handed over to their parents at 3.00 p.m. in the junior playground. Pupils are dismissed from the doors next to the theatre by the class teacher. 3.00 pm.

Should your child be collected by someone other than yourselves on any particular day, please inform us via the office. You may only take another child if a parent has specifically asked you to collect them and informed the class teacher of the arrangement. This will prevent any uncertainties and ensures the safety of the children.

Filming and Photography

The school does not wish to prevent parents from taking photos or filming events which involve your children. However, there are some circumstances when photography or filming are not permitted. Firstly, for some school plays we are required to purchase a performing licence where we would be in breach of copyright restrictions if photography or filming were to take place. In this situation a member of staff will inform parents at the beginning of the play of this restriction. Secondly, as is common practice elsewhere, we also ask that parents do not film or take photographs in the swimming pool or changing rooms.

For other events we ask that if parents are taking photographs or filming they show consideration to other parents by not being so enthusiastic that they spoil the occasion for others by getting in the way. We also ask that if the photographs or film you take contains images of children other than your own you do not upload these to social media sites.


A Health and Safety Document, available from the Bursar explains how children are treated if ill or injured and how parents are contacted if necessary. A copy is issued to parents when a child joins the school. All medicines and inhalers must be handed to the office, rather than the class teacher, for safe keeping and administering. Please let the school welfare officer know of any health problems or allergies that your child may have; also any special dietary needs but please do not include food likes and dislikes (


Children in Year 1 have a reading book each evening; their reading book and reading diary must be returned to school each day. Pupils are read with at least once a week by the class teacher or teaching assistant, but reading records are checked daily to see if the pupils have read at home and completed their reading book. The reading record book is only to record the reading done at home and school and any other parent/teacher communication should be via email or in person with the class teacher. The Year 1 pupils can also choose a library book each Friday which must be returned the following Monday.

Children in Year 1 also have weekly spellings to learn and dictation sentences to complete each week. This homework is sent home on a Tuesday for a spelling test in school the following Monday. In the summer term an additional piece of homework will be set that can be completed online.


From the summer term of Year 1 children are placed in one of four houses: Corpus, Magdalen, Pembroke and Trinity. As well as competing in their houses for sporting events and competitions such as general knowledge quizzes, art and music, pupils can earn credits for their houses through good work or behaviour.

Mall School Association (MSA)

The MSA supports the school via fundraising and social activities and parents who would like to volunteer to take an active part can contact the current Chair (

Online Learning

Pupils will be provided with logins for online learning sites as and when the children need them. These will be written in their reading record.

Parents’ Evenings

There is a meeting in school early in the autumn term for parents to meet the class teacher. This meeting covers the types of activities provided for the children, the daily routines of the school and other general information.

Parents’ evenings where you can meet your child’s teacher individually to discuss their progress are held in the autumn and spring term. Additional parent meetings face-face are available on request.

Parent Portal

The Mall School parent portal is a communication tool which will give parents quick access to information about your child such as attendance records and assessment reports. Extra-curricular activities and parents’ evenings are also booked through the parent portal.


Parents are reminded that in the interests of safety they may not stop on the zigzags outside the school site. We ask parents to show consideration for our neighbours and local residents by taking care not obstruct the entrances of offices, houses or flats close by, nor park in their car parks or driveways. Pupils are also told that they must not cross the road except at the pedestrian crossing, even if accompanied by an adult, and parents are asked to reinforce this elementary road safety policy with their children.

PE & Swimming

Children begin swimming classes in the first week of term. They will need plain black swimming briefs (tight fitting please), or a plain black swimming costume, a Mall School swimming hat, goggles, a towel and a Mall School swimming bag (all items to be named). If a child has a verruca then the verucca should be ‘sealed’ with Bazuka, to prevent cross infection.

Pupils have PE once a week on site.

P.E. kit may be left in school.

PE kit

  • White socks
  • White Velcro fastening trainers with non-marking soles
  • Mall School drawstring PE bag

PE and summer term games kit

  • Mall School white and burgundy polo shirt
  • Mall School white and burgundy shorts
  • White socks
  • White Velcro fastening trainers with non-marking soles
  • Mall School drawstring PE bag

Swimming kit

  • Plain black speedo swimming briefs (must be tight fitting and not shorts) or plain black swimming costume
  • Mall School swimming cap
  • Mall School swim bag
  • Goggles
  • Towel


The following are available on request and are also available in hard copy:

  • Admissions (also available on school website)
  • Behaviour, Rewards and Sanctions (also available on school website)
  • Disciplinary
  • Expulsion and Removal
  • Anti-Bullying (also available on school website)
  • Special Educational Needs (also available on school website)
  • English as an Additional Language (also available on school website)
  • Safeguarding (also available on school website)
  • Curriculum
  • Health, First Aid and Security
  • Health and Safety; Tours, Visits and Events
  • Equal Opportunities Policy
  • Previous Years’ Academic Results
  • Complaints (also available on school website)


From time to time the school will wish to create material to be used for publicity purposes.  Should you not wish your child to be included in any such materials you are asked to notify the marketing manager in writing immediately (  Otherwise the school reserves the right to include your son in any publicity material, eg. news releases, prospectus, school email newsletter and magazine, school website, social media etc. Your child’s full name will not be included with their photo, unless parental permission has been given to do so. For more information on how the school uses photos or videos of your child, please refer to the school’s privacy notices which can be found on our website:


A full written report for children in Year 1 is published on the parent portal at the end of the summer term. Our reports aim to be positive but are honest and will highlight child’ strengths while suggesting areas for improvement. We welcome comments on reports via an online survey link, which are always read by the class teacher and action is taken when appropriate. All reports are published on the Parent Portal, in a PDF format which can saved to your own files.

School Transport

School buses currently run each morning from:

  • Chiswick, Isleworth via Richmond
  • Sunbury via Hampton

Three afternoon services currently run to Richmond via St Margaret’s, Chiswick via Isleworth and Osterley and Sunbury via Hampton. These leave from the main site at 4.30 pm.

Children may begin using school mini buses from Reception, providing they are able to securely fasten their own seatbelt. Further details are available from our Extra Curricular Co-ordinator (

School Trips

We believe that trips and experiences play an important part in your child’s education. The Mall School provides a superb range of exciting trips and experiences for each year group. Below are typical trips and activities pupils in Year 1 have enjoyed in recent years.

  • The mobile planetarium
  • Windsor Castle
  • Gunnersbury Museum


The pedestrian gate is locked from 9.00 am until 2.50 pm each day and admission during this time is via intercom to the school reception. At lunch and break times all pupils are supervised by members of staff. No child is allowed off the school premises unless supervised by an appropriate adult.

In the highly unlikely event that a child went missing, their parents would be informed immediately, all available members of staff would search the school premises for the child and the police would be contacted.


A complete list of governors and staff (with qualifications) is to be found on the website and is available in hard copy on request from the office.


Pupils are expected to be neat and tidy at the start and end of the school day. All children must wear a blazer or, during the winter term, a Mall School coat to school. Please name all clothes, including underwear, socks and shoes as these can become mixed up during changing for swimming.

Items in bold are school regulation pattern and can only be obtained from Stevensons, 1-5 Heath Road, Twickenham. (Tel: 020 8892 2201,,

All year round

  • Mall School blazer (or Mall School coat in winter term)
  • Mall School white polo shirt
  • Mall School grey v-neck jumper
  • Short charcoal grey socks
  • Plain black shoes (Velcro). Not trainer type.
  • Mall School rucksack

Summer (September to October half term and post Easter Break))

  • Grey shorts (flat front, single pleat, not cargo style)
  • Mall School burgundy sunhat


Winter (post October half term to Easter break)

  • Long grey trousers
  • Mall School black coat (instead of blazer winter term only)
  • Mall School burgundy scarf *(optional)
  • Mall School burgundy hat *(optional)
  • Plain black gloves *(optional)

PE kit

  • White socks
  • White Velcro fastening trainers with non-marking soles
  • Mall School drawstring PE bag

PE and summer term games kit

  • Mall School white and burgundy polo shirt
  • Mall School white and burgundy shorts
  • White socks
  • White Velcro fastening trainers with non-marking soles
  • Mall School drawstring PE bag

Swimming kit

  • Plain black speedo swimming briefs (must be tight fitting and not shorts) or plain black swimming costume
  • Mall School swimming cap
  • Mall School swim bag
  • Goggles
  • Towel


The school website at includes information about the syllabus for each year group.

Email addresses

Main reception –

Headmaster’s PA –

Deputy Head –

Welfare Officer-

Extra Curricular Co-ordinator-

Bursar –

Finance Manager-

Director of Music-

Head of Games –





Parents can also raise concerns related to the quality of education or the welfare health or safety of pupils, to Ofsted ( tel: 0300 123 1231 and/or to the Independent Schools Inspectorate ( tel: 020 7600 0100.

The Mall School is a registered charity. The Chairman of Governors is Mr R J H Walker, The Mall School Trust, 185 Hampton Road, Twickenham. Telephone: 020 8977 2523.

Beyond the classroom