Prep School Cardiff

Prep School Case Studies

Hear from our students!

Our Prep pupils from across the age ranges, alongside some of their parents, share a special insight into Westbourne life.

Beatrice, Year 5

Beatrice, Year 5

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I used to live in Cardiff and I joined Westbourne in Year 3. Years before that, even before nursery, I lived in London. I have moved around a lot. When I came to Westbourne, I was in Year 3 and my brother was in Year 1 and we’ve had a great Westbourne journey together because we sometimes play with each other outside. I think he’s glad I’m in a school with him because before he wasn’t old enough to go to school and he would miss me a lot.

What do you like most about Westbourne? How is it different from your other school?

I like that the classes are small. At my other school there were a lot of bigger classes. I was in a class of 30 but now there are always teachers about and they are willing to help you. Our class is quite small, there are only 15 and our teacher can help you which I think is really good for our education.

There are so many different cultures and so many different people with a lot of different languages, and everyone is friendly towards each other even though we are all from different places.

What subjects do you most enjoy? Why?

I’m an all rounder but personally I love English the most. We’re doing poems right now and honestly I really really love saying and writing poems. Poems are just so beautiful and they really paint a picture in your mind.

Do you have any hobbies outside school?

Rock Climbing at Boulders. It’s a holiday club that I go to. You never know who is going to be there as the classes vary depending on when it is. It’s really nice and me and my brother are good at it!

What are you most curious about?

I’m most curious about this country and how I could improve it. When I grow up I want to be a politician because I really think I could change the country into a better place. We are in a bit of trouble right now with the cost of living and climate change and I really think I could help it out.

You are Head Student. What do you have to do in this role?

In Year 5 we have elections and you can put yourself forward as a candidate for different positions. The teachers vote and I got voted in as Head Student. I put myself forward. I have a responsibility to be a good role model for others in the school.

Giulia, Year 4

Giulia, Year 4

Tell me a little bit about yourself.

My name is Giulia and I am in Year 4.

How is Year 4 going so far?

I like it so far. I like that we have been introduced to new subjects since Year 3. I’ve been introduced to philosophy now and I am learning about Greek philosophers and things like that. I like the way that it changes the way we look at other subjects.

When did you join Westbourne?

I joined at the end of Year 1.

What do you like most about Westbourne?

I like that you get more attention from the teachers and that the classes are smaller than at my old school. I also get to meet different people.

Do you have lots of friends here?

Yes, I have made good friends. Everyone is very friendly here.

Tell me about your favourite lessons.

I really like my English lessons because I have a lovely teacher. She is kind and doesn’t give too much homework. Not like maths, which has too much homework!

Art is lots of fun and I have a nice teacher. Miss Bayliss…she is very helpful.

Is Miss Bayliss your favourite teacher?

Yes! Mrs Bayliss is very helpful. The teachers are always there to help you when you need.

Do you have any hobbies outside school?

I like rock climbing.

What about in school – what are your favourite clubs?

I like the ninja warrior and climbing after school clubs.

Tell me about Forest and Beach School. Do you enjoy it?

Forest and beach school is the best! We get to go on trips with classes and build dens and at the beach there are rock pools.

Have you been on any fun trips with your class?

Not this year but I am excited about going on fun, residential overnight trips.

What do you want to be when you’re older?

I want to be an actress. I do fun Lamda workshops, which is acting/poetry through links to a school in London.

What are you most curious about?

Curious about what we’re going to learn next.  I’m looking forward to Senior School at Westbourne.

What’s the best thing you’ve learnt about at school?

About slime on Science Day! I also really liked learning about Remembrance Day and now that it’s the World Cup we can get to watch games at lunch with flags!

Our Parents

Olivia, Year 2

Olivia, Year 2

Tell me a little bit about yourself.

I am 6 almost turning 7.

When did you join Westbourne?

Halfway through Reception. I was at another school in Cardiff before joining Westbourne.

What do you like most about Westbourne?

Everyone is kind and respectful and lovely. I really like the smaller classes here because at my old school the classes were too big but here they are much less.  

I also like Assembly as I get to perform. The Reception and Year 1 pupils get to perform and they are really cute. I also like that they choose sensible students to be on the School Council and to be Star of the Week. The school chooses really carefully.  

Do you have lots of friends here?

Yes, lots.

Tell me about your favourite lessons.

I like dancing and singing and acting.

Do you have any hobbies outside school?

I like to make up a lot of songs and on a Sunday I go to a dance, singing and acting school. I really like drawing dresses that I can make one day for me and other people.  

Do you do any school clubs?

I go to the Badminton Club, which is fun. Tomorrow is the best day ever because I go to Rock Climbing and on Thursdays I go to Wizardry where you make slime and lava lamps. It’s so cool. I also go to Netball.

What do you want to be when you’re older?

I want to be a dancer because my mum was a dancer and she runs a dance school in London. My dad was an actor. I was thinking about making this shop with my friends where in one part people can choose a dress I have drawn, and in another part my friend Sahara will make the dress, and in the other part of the shop my friend Ella will take the money.

Gonzalo, Year 5

Gonzalo, Year 5

Tell us about yourself.

I’m Gonzalo and I come from Qatar.  I’ve lived there nearly my entire life.

When did you join Westbourne?

About 2 years ago.

What do you like most about Westbourne?

I like Westbourne because there are really cool clubs and I also have fun with my friends. I have made lots of friends here.

What subjects do you most enjoy?

History, Maths and Science.

Tell me about the teachers at Westbourne. Who’s your favourite?

Miss Jones is really nice – she also lets us have fun and the lessons are really interesting so that we don’t get bored.

Is Westbourne different to your previous school?

Yes. Westbourne has more clubs, and even though the other school had a bigger playground, I still like it at Westbourne. We get to go out to Forest School and on trips here.

Tell me about Forest and Beach School. Do you enjoy it?

Yes! We get to explore and, with my friends, we get to make huts and dens with mud! It is really fun.

Have you been on any fun trips with your class?

Yes, my first one was to Rock UK and my most recent one was doing Forest School for two nights on a residential trip.  I really enjoyed it.

What do you want to be when you’re older?

I want to be a tennis player. I am the youngest in my tennis class. Mostly there are 13 year olds and I’m younger. I do tennis outside of school and train once a week. I sometimes go with Dad to play.

What are you most curious about?

I’m really curious about the Senior School because we go there once a week to do Computer Science and Coding. One day we are going to look at the school to find out where our classes are and where we will eat next year.

Melisa, Year 2

Melisa, Year 2

Hello Melisa, can you tell me when you joined Westbourne?

I have just come here new! I was in London in Year 1.

What do you like most about Westbourne?

There are a lot of children from different places, which is nice. One of my friends here is from the Ukraine. I come from Turkey and have a house in Turkey. I speak Turkish at home. I can speak a bit of German and Welsh.

My favourite thing about Westbourne is the assemblies, when you get to perform and you get to see who the Star of the Week is and it just makes you smile!

I also like the art room. I like the beautiful playground and swings and that there is so much nature around here.

Tell me about your favourite subjects.

I really like Spanish. We learn Spanish on an app called Duolingo. I also like to do art and I like my teacher.

Do you have lots of friends here?

Yes, I have lots.  Everyone is very friendly and kind.

Tell me about the teachers at Westbourne. Who’s your favourite?

I like all the teachers. They are kind to me all the time. My twin sister and I are quiet.

Do you have any hobbies outside school?

I like music. I play the harp and the flute. I go to harp lessons and have them here at school in The Lodge and I also do my flute there. I want to learn to sew on the sewing machine.

Do you go to any school clubs?

I go to lots of clubs like Arts & Crafts and Chill Out and I also go to Nature Club.

What do you want to be when you’re older?

I want to be a lot of things. I want to be an artist, a doctor, a vet. Probably an artist because art is my favourite subject. I like drawing.

What are you most curious about?

I’m really curious about nature – especially about swimming in deep water! We get to do swimming here at Westbourne, which is great.

Hugo, Year 1

Hugo, Year 1

Tell us about yourself.

My name is Hugo and I’m in Year 1.

When did you join Westbourne?

I joined Little Westbourne when I was two. Now I’m five I go to Prep School. I really love it here. My little brother is in Little Westbourne now and I’m looking forward to playing with him when he’s in Reception.

What do you like most about Westbourne?

I love my friends and how they help me and play with me. I have lots of friends at Westbourne.

What subjects do you most enjoy?

My favourite lessons are Phonics lessons because I like reading. I also like Science and learning about the world. I also like art and drawing.

Do you take part in any school clubs?

Yes, I do clubs every day. My favourite clubs are Photography Club and Science Club!

Tell me about the teachers at Westbourne. Who’s your favourite?

I love Mrs Morgan as she is so kind. She was my teacher in Reception and our lessons were really fun.

Tell me about Forest and Beach School. Do you enjoy it?

Yes! We look for berries and pine cones. I like looking at nature. Sometimes we go to the farm to talk about the seasons, and sometimes we go to Penarth beach or Sully Island to find out more about sea creatures and different types of rocks.

Have you been on any fun trips with your class?

I’ve been to Cardiff Castle and we learned about history. There were gargoyles peeking down from the towers and we looked around the buildings.

What do you want to be when you’re older?

I want to be a scientist because I want to study space and the future. I like studying the earth and I’m interested in meteors.

Charlotte, Year 4

Charlotte, Year 4

Do you want to tell me about yourself?

I’m Charlotte, I’m 9 and I’ve been in Westbourne for four years and I’m in Year 4.

And how is Year 4 going?

It’s great! The teachers are really nice if I’m struggling with something I always feel I can go to the teachers. They help me a lot and I don’t feel like if I don’t know how to do something I should be scared because… well, I have someone to go to.

So did you join Westbourne in Year 1?

I joined in Reception, only for four days a week and then I started Year 1.

What was it like when you first started?

I remember when I first started in Reception and there was this girl called Sophia and she told me where my peg was and she showed me around the school.

Did that make it easy to join?

Yeah, I was in Scotland before here in nursery but when I joined Westbourne I felt like I already know all the people and I knew all my class in the first hour.

The class wasn’t very big so they combined us with year one. But it was really nice because everyone came up to me and introduced themselves so I made a lot of friends immediately.

Did you always have a lot of friends in Westbourne?

Yeah, it’s been really nice! My best friend is Tilly. But also the teachers are my friends too… when I was a bit sad the other day my teacher and I had a little dance to cheer me up.

Has your day changed much now that you are in year four?

It’s the same as year one, it’s just that we have different work. The people are so caring and they always come up to me and … at this point it feels like this is my second family basically.

Tell me about the classes that you do?

We do English and Math and History… English is my favourite because I am really dramatic. I write fairytales like Cinderella but I don’t really do it like it is supposed to be, I tell it from the perspective of the shoe.

Do you get to spend any time with children of different ages?

Yeah, I play with reception and year 1 in the last break and we play tag and other games. It’s really funny!

My favourite game, however, is zoos. You pick an animal you want to be and you pick different sections and in the middle, we all come out and we get to be the animals!

Do you play that one with your class?

Yeah, I get along with all the people in my class really well. I don’t have anyone who I don’t really like. They are all really caring, if there is anything at all that upsets me they all come straight away.

Do you have any fun stories with your classmates?

Yes, we went on a residential trip. I went canoeing with my friend Gabby and we were doing this activity where you had to pass a ball to the children in the other canoes. But then our boat got tipped over so when we got out of the water my friends said she thought there was a little ant in the water touching her toe. And we decided maybe it’s a swimming ant!

Tell me more about the residential trip.

I loved it. It was activities in the morning then lunch and followed by more activities. One of the activities was called ‘ambushing’ so basically one group hides and the other group has to find you. We also did campfires.

I liked sharing a room with the girls from the room as well, I was in a room with some girls from my class and we really bonded.

How many people are there in the class?

It’s ten girls and four boys.

Do all of you go on trips together?

Not everyone, if your parents don’t feel ready for you to go then you can still go on a fun school trip. So when I was in year two my parents didn’t really want me to go on the residential so we went to folly farm and got to see all the animals. My favourite part was seeing the lamas.

Are trips your favourite part of school?

Actually, it’s lessons. You’ll think this is silly but I like it in lessons because I get to open up my imagination and I can just feel free.

Michael, Year 5

Michael, Year 5

You only joined last year, how did you become a Prefect?

At the beginning of the academic year, everyone who aspired to be Head Boy or Girl, a Prefect or a House Captain had to make a speech in front of all the parents and all the children. After the speech, all the children voted on who they wanted for each position.

I was a bit nervous doing the speech but once I started I got the hang of it. My speech was about me promising to do my best to improve the school and show everyone that it is fun to learn.

When I was thinking about my speech I was looking up to the Prefects from last year and wanted to be like them because they were really good. They made sure that if someone was upset about something they would help them. If someone made a suggestion about something, they would seriously consider how they could act on these suggestions.

What suggestions have you had as Prefect so far?

We have put a couple of important suggestions to Ms Chinnock so far. These included increasing the amount of tennis equipment in the school as so many people in the school now like tennis. We also represented pupil requests for new goalposts because the ones we had had become slightly broken due to people swinging on them.

As soon as we spoke with Ms Chinnock about them, she helped us resolve those issues.

Can you share with us what lessons you enjoy most?

In class time, some of us join a MAT lesson (More Able and Talented) session. At MAT we get challenges which stretch our imagination, most recently we’ve been thinking about marketing and how we might make a video to advertise the school….we start recording next week.

I am also learning languages. It’s good because I get to help my little sister, she is in Year 1 and she just started learning French and is obsessed with it.

Did you start learning a language in year 1 as well?

No, I was studying in another school but then it was knocked down by the local council.

When I moved to Westbourne we started studying Spanish in year 4 alongside French. When I get to year 6 we’ll start learning Chinese. I’m excited about that because I like languages.

What was it like moving to Westbourne School?

Before I started I was really nervous. I didn’t know if I’d fit in or if I’d get bullied or anything like that, being the new kid. But I was welcomed with open arms and it was quite wonderful joining Westbourne.

What is it like here in comparison to your previous school?

In my previous school … some of the teachers were okay. There was one teacher who was really good but she left. At Westbourne, all of the teachers are absolutely amazing! They are kind, helpful and understanding. If you are struggling with something the teacher will immediately come to your aid and help you.

What is your favourite subject?

My favourite subject is probably Science. It seems to me that in science nothing is absolutely definitely going to happen like in Maths where 1+1 is always 2. But is science things that you can’t guess can happen.

What are some subjects you don’t like as much?

I think History and Art. For some reason when I am in an art competition then I am given quite a high mark but if I’m just doing art then even if I try my very best and try to think of it as a competition, I just do some average work.

How do the teachers approach the fact that you struggle with these subjects?

If you struggle with a subject the teachers give you extra help and maybe some more homework to help you practice. That’s very different from my previous school where we only had homework once a month. Here I get homework maybe two or three times a week.

I like homework actually. I’m not too keen on it when it is given on a Friday and due on Monday because I have quite busy weekends. Especially this weekend, I had a swimming competition and a birthday party to attend for two of my classmates.

Do you often hang out with your classmates out of school?

Yes, we are quite good friends.

Do you go to residential trips?

Yes, next year we are going to PGL and I am very excited. This year we went to Rock UK. It’s a climbing, outdoor physical activity centre. It was so much fun!

Do you do any extracurricular clubs?

Yes, there are different clubs every day of the week, apart from Friday when we have an assembly. Different clubs are available to different classes. There are two STEM clubs which happen on the same day but they are for different ages.

I go to a multisport club and I’m also in the senior school choir because in year five you can join the senior school one. It’s similar to how year six sometimes join the Prep School residential trip.

I also go to the Young Journalist Club on Wednesdays. We write a newspaper that is given out on the Friday assembly to parents.

Do you have any friends in year six?

Yes, I have a couple. It’s nice being able to mix with other year groups.