On the road to bilingualism 

Two years old: setting out on a big adventure 

At two years old, your little one undergoes crucial physical and intellectual development. This stage is especially important because it arrives as your child encounters new routines, friends and surroundings. This new journey is exciting, and we would be delighted to guide you and your child every step of the way with Early Years: the British Council School's educational programme for children from two to five years old.

What is Early Years? How can we work together? And what sets our programme apart?

The importance of play in child development

Play is fundamental to whole-child development because it is the means through which children experience and understand life. That is why our Early Years programme focuses on providing your child with a safe, friendly and stimulating environment which welcomes them to play.

How is this achieved? Our classrooms are specifically designed for children to invent, explore and discover. ‘Open-ended play’ allows children free and creative expression through activities which encourage teamwork and negotiation, among other life skills. 

Experts in Bilingualism

We have been providing bicultural and bilingual education for eight decades to young learners, with excellent results. Our methodology sees the progressive strengthening and consolidation of children’s linguistic and communicative skills.

How does our bilingual approach work? With a wide variety of learning spaces, and through individual attention, your child will discover meanings and expressions organically and progressively, in an environment rich in resources and stimuli. 

Each child is unique: individual attention

As every child is unique, we take an individualised approach to each student: we consider and measure each individual’s circumstances and rate of cognitive development. Our curriculum is designed specifically to arrive at a profound understanding of each child.

We achieve this goal through individual observation and evaluation. 

Experienced, motivated and qualified teaching staff

Each class – with a maximum of 14 children in Pre-Nursery – is assigned a team of three highly-qualified professionals specialising in early childhood education: a teacher trained in the British education system who teaches the entire class following the English national curriculum, along with a Spanish teacher and a bilingual teaching assistant. In short, children learn through the English education system adapted to the Spanish context.

What are the advantages of this approach and how does it benefit your child? This multidisciplinary approach enriches your child's outlook in line with our values of equality, diversity and inclusion, by offering multiple accents and different points of view. This multifaceted team also reinforces our commitment to individual attention for each child. 

Collaboration with parents and the educational community

At the British Council School, we take a child-centred approach to learning, where each child takes a leading role in their education. Key to the success of this approach is your involvement and participation in co-ordinated collaboration with the entire educational community. 

How does this work? This approach involves the development of motivating activities, so that you can continue building on your child’s progress at home; it also involves specialised workshops for parents, as well as forums for exchanging experiences, among other events and activities.

Bilingual Baby Club: an example of early-years collaboration

There is no better time than the first few years of life to help your child on their way to bilingualism. In addition to the cognitive advantages, early childhood offers a more relaxed setting – one in which children develop language skills as they play, as they become accustomed to their first routines, and as they interact with the world around them. Programmes like the Bilingual Baby Club (14–36 months) have been developed by the British Council School with this precise focus, to foster bilingualism with family support at a very early age. Parents can, at the same time, reinforce their child’s learning with complementary activities in the home, activities which are designed to strengthen emotional bonds while promoting interest and confidence in English.

Click here for more information about our Bilingual Baby Club. 

Our programme and areas of learning

The British Council School: Early Years in Somosaguas and the Infant School in Viso follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum: a curriculum which is implemented in English and which helps children grow socially, physically and academically. 

Below is a summary of our areas of learning and development: 

Area of learning and development

Language

Personal, social and health education

English

Communication, language and literacy

English

Mathematical development

English

Knowledge and understanding of the world, including information technology

English

Physical development

English

Creative development: arts, crafts and music

English

Language and literacy

Spanish

 

Complementing the curriculum: dance and music

We have designed numerous enjoyable educational activities for your child as components of and complements to their curriculum. Numbered among these is musical learning, an approach which, studies show, aids early brain development, bringing benefits in areas such as language, mathematics and visual-spatial processing.

How does this approach work? Every corner of the school comes alive with music. We encourage children to develop their interest in and skills with musical instruments from an early age. As part of their curriculum, children learn to play the violin in a group and are able to participate in their first concert before the age of five.

Dance is another excellent extracurricular complement which is proven to have many benefits for children. Benefits include the development and strengthening of imagination, physical balance and cognitive abilities.

This approach stems directly from our own curriculum: Music and Movement is an area of learning and development in the Foundation Stage of the English national curriculum. In addition to the usual work that children do with their teachers in the classroom and playground, we have activities with specific focus on the development of physical expression, flexibility, movement and self-esteem.

Where we are

British Council School Early Years en Somosaguas 
C/ Solano 3-5-7
28223 Madrid
Teléfono: +34 91 337 3612

British Council Infants en el Viso 
C/Alfonso Rodríguez Santamaría 23-25
28002 Madrid
Teléfono: +34 91 337 3612

See also