Wetherby School is almost unique in its delivery of reasoning lessons to boys throughout the school. Reasoning skills are viewed by many in the educational field as a meaningful indicator of innate intelligence and testing in this area is given significant importance in academic testing processes from 7+ level onwards. Whilst some academics would argue that it is ‘impossible to teach reasoning skills,’ we at Wetherby would strongly suggest that the boys benefit from (and hugely enjoy) being exposed to as wide a range of non-verbal and verbal reasoning materials from as early an age as possible and that they most certainly can be taught strategies to tackle tasks and develop their capacity to think logically.
Our reasoning curriculum places equal emphasis on non-verbal and verbal reasoning skills. The non-verbal curriculum focuses on the ability to identify pattern, sequence and to understand and analyse visual information. In verbal reasoning, we aim to develop boys’ capacity to understand and assimilate verbal information and to think constructively about language, rather than at simple fluency or vocabulary recognition.
Our objective is to enable each boy to develop his self confidence in reasoning at his own level and pace and to enable boys with specific talents in this area to shine through. The use of practical resources runs alongside more formal materials. Boys are assessed in reasoning through standardised NFER testing methods from the end of their Reception year onwards. This, alongside performance in class work, enables us to closely monitor each boy’s progress and to support or extend him appropriately.