How to help your child transition from the Foundation phase to Flex


Transitioning from the foundation phase can be a bit of an adjustment for children. However, with planning and assisting your child to understand how the Flex model works, they can reach the full potential in preparation for high school. 

Unlike the foundation phase, the Flex model or intermediate phase give scholars more independence, which allows them to think and participate in their own learning. This helps scholars to gain critical thinking skills, which they will require for the job market.  The Flex model starts from Grade-4 to Grade-7

SPARK Ferndale assistant principal Ntombikayise Gontyeleni shares strategies on how to help your child do well in Flex. 

What is the Flex model? 

Flex is a learning model that combines direct instruction with a teacher and online learning. The students have a higher degree over their own learning, as they have to work independently. They also learn how to collaborate with other students, as they get divided into different ability groups and transition into different modalities. Flex also promotes self-directed learning. 

Why Flex? 

The Flex model promotes independence, empowers scholars to think for themselves, take initiative, pace themselves and take ownership of their own work. This is to prepare scholars for the next phase of their schooling life, which is high school. Unlike primary school where scholars get a lot of assistance from the teacher, in high school scholars are expected to be responsible for their own school work. 

What subjects do scholars do in Flex? 

The subjects that scholars do in Flex are literacy, Maths, Physical Education, First Additional Language Isizulu (Gauteng, Isixhosa (Western Cape), Social Science and Natural Science. 

What challenges do scholars face in Flex?

  • Completing work independently
  • Adapting to the academic rigour
  • Transitioning (From classroom rotations)

What you can do to help as a parent?

To help your child transition from the foundation phase to Flex it is important to get involved as a parent and take part in their learning process. 

Here are some tips on how you can help them: 

  • Instil responsibility at home by giving them chores and ensuring that they complete tasks, this will help your child to learn to be responsible
  • Encourage your child to work independently 
  • Teach them about the importance of working with others 
  • Check your child’s work when the teacher sends it home
  • Encourage them to practise tasks, so that they can master their school content 
  • Check-in with them emotionally, remember that they are at an age where they are experiencing a lot of changes.

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