Guide to South Africa’s National Curriculum R-12

In a nutshell, South Africa has put together a curriculum that covers everything your child will learn from Grade R (kindergarten) all the way through Grade 12. This curriculum is called the National Curriculum Statement Grades R-12, and it’s designed to make sure the kids are learning what they need to, in a structured way.

What’s in it?

  1. Clear instructions for what should be taught in each subject.
  2. Policies about how the program works and how kids move through grades.
  3. Standards for assessing how well the kids are learning.

Why did this happen? Teachers said the old system was confusing and had some issues. The government listened and created this new, improved curriculum to make things clearer and more organized.

What’s in it for the kids? The curriculum is designed to help kids:

  • Think critically and solve problems.
  • Work well alone and with others.
  • Manage themselves and their work.
  • Collect and evaluate information.
  • Communicate in different ways.
  • Use science and technology responsibly.
  • Understand the world and how different parts are connected.

How did it roll out? It started in 2012 for the little ones (Grade R-3) and first year of high school (Grade 10). Then each year after that, it rolled out to the next set of grades until it was in all grades by 2014.

How are the kids graded? In the younger grades, the focus is on assessments throughout the year. As they get older, there’s more emphasis on end-of-year exams. For example, in Grade R-3, assessments during the year are everything. By Grade 10-12, assessments count for 25% and end-of-year exams are 75%.

Languages: Kids must take two of the 11 official languages, plus they can choose up to two more languages (either official or non-official).

Anything else? There’s also been a focus on teaching English from Grade 1, reducing the number of projects, and combining some subjects to make things more streamlined.

Basically, it’s all about giving your child a well-rounded education and making sure they are learning the skills they need to succeed in life!