Our school

At Lewes New School, learning is rich with discovery, exploration and play.

Our ‘human-centred’ approach is based on a fundamental belief that children are naturally competent learners with an innate curiosity and an urge to develop relationships and explore the world.

We aim to empower our children to live rich and meaningful lives.

Informed, Inquisitive Learners

Children work alongside their teachers to design a curriculum that is both meaningful to them and appropriately challenging.

Actively constructing and exploring ideas rather than passively absorbing information, they become creative problem solvers and critical thinkers.

  • A ‘co-created’ curriculum: Children formulate questions, seek out answers and evaluate their own learning. Projects are inquiry-led and inter-disciplinary, encouraging children to explore relationships and make connections between the things they learn.
  • Authentic activities: Learning is practical and focused on ‘real-world’ activities – in school and out in the world – that are relevant to children’s lives, ensuring high levels of motivation and engagement.
  • Skills for learning: Children learn the skills for effective lifelong learning – including literacy and numeracy but also skills and dispositions such as creative thinking, strategic awareness and resilience.

Wise, caring young people

We value emotional and social development as much as academic achievement and believe holistic wellbeing is an essential prerequisite for learning and success.

Our commitment to wellbeing is woven into the fabric of daily life. Our children develop an understanding of what they need to care for themselves, each other and their world.

  • Taking children seriously: Our teachers are trained to listen to and respect each child’s point of view, without resorting to punishments, rewards or coercive power. When children feel heard they become confident, articulate and self-aware.
  • Attending to the ‘whole’ child: We actively seek out opportunities for social and emotional learning and ensure our days are active and supported by good food, with plenty of time outside.
  • Time to play: Through play, children become joyful learners. They explore their identity, discover their world and learn the subtle art of friendship. Play is encouraged.

Purposeful members of their communities

We work together to create a vibrant learning community that reflects the world we want to live in – where everyone feels they can belong.

Through their participation, children learn the value of working together and building and sustaining meaningful relationships.

  • Small, mixed age classes: Children build close relationships with their teachers and peers of all ages, and can learn and develop at their own pace.
  • Collaborative learning: Children learn to work together as well as independently. We actively foster a culture of collaboration and debate.
  • Opportunities for celebration: We take the time to come together to mark transitions and the changing seasons to strengthen bonds and celebrate our community.

“Parents always say childhood goes too fast. Just one of the things I love about LNS is the chance it offers to be more connected to my children as they grow up.”

Sarah, parent