Key Stage 1

Durham School for Girls Doha aims to inspire a lifelong appetite for learning in a caring environment that will develop emotional, moral and spiritual strength for future leaders.


1. Overview

A smooth transition takes place between Foundation and Key Stage One. Girls in KS1 follow the English National Curriculum. We have adapted this slightly to ensure our curriculum is culturally engaging and teaches skills for our girls to become global citizens.

The structure of the curriculum is as follows:

  • English – (Phonics) Reading, Writing and Speaking and Listening
  • Math’s
  • Thematic Topic (History, Geography, Science)
  • Music
  • Physical Education including Swimming.
  • Art and Technology
  • Computing and Design
  • Arabic, Islamic and Qatari History. (Ministry of Education Qatar)

Read, Write Inc. will be used as a basis for the teaching of phonics but other schemes may be used to ensure an individual approach for our girls. The ‘Oxford Reading Scheme’ has been purchased for reading, ‘Talk for Writing’ will be used alongside some elements of ‘The Write Stuff’ for Writing and ‘Maths – No Problem’ has been purchased for the teaching of Maths. We do, however, give full autonomy to our teachers when planning engaging lessons for our girls. 

The Curriculum is ‘thematic,’ meaning each term or half term the girls will begin a new adventure through a question which will be posed. For example, Term 2 in Year 1 will think about ‘Where could my fish have gone?’ as they explore Oceans and Seas around the world.

Their learning will be tailored to fully immerse them into the world of animals, oceans, Qatari boating history etc. Term 2 in Year 2 the girls will find out if they can ‘Party with a Platypus’ as they research and learn scientific vocabulary surrounding animals and their habitats- art, geography, PE and many other subjects will be taught through this theme. Our curriculum is designed to capture imagination and inspire a love for learning.

Links across the curriculum are made wherever possible and all activities are planned and delivered to maximise first-hand experience and respond to differing learning styles. Role play continues to be used as a way of developing expressive language skills; role play areas change regularly in classrooms and central areas.

Wherever possible, children are taken out of school for activities that support and enrich the curriculum, for example, the Y1 pupils may visit a local science museum where they get the opportunity to engage in many ‘hands on’ practical activities.  Y2 pupils may visit a local desert wildlife park as part of their study of animals in the local environment.  Parents are invited into school to see an annual assembly.  The children have great fun preparing for this through songs, actions, dancing and some speaking parts.  Similarly, visitors with special skills and experience are invited into class to further enrich the curriculum.

KS1 students receive 25 lessons and additional form time. During this time, teachers run booster sessions for Phonics, Mental Maths and PSHE. Our girls will always be encouraged to be independent learners. Technology will be incorporated throughout the curriculum, including computing and programming. We will follow the Ministry of Education Curriculum for Arabic and Islamic Studies. This will be supported with additional Arabic Reading Schemes and songs.

2. Key Stages

From our EYFS classes right through to Years 12 and 13, we work on positive mind sets, constructive feedback, mentoring and coaching through our buddy and house systems and student counselling. We celebrate each individual and their achievements and we challenge our Girls to work hard, try their best and be positive about themselves.