HELIX programme

logo helix

The HELIX Programme was officially launched in 2015 and was designed to formalise and develop the extra-curricular educational events and activities, many of which had been already running for some years.

What is HELIX?

HELIX derived from Holistic, Experiential learning, Leadership, International citizenship & the X-Factor. 


The programme aims to help students to:

  • value all aspects of their development, not focus solely on academics
  • provide opportunities to experiment and apply their learning, not just rely on theory
  • give more opportunities to develop leadership instead of only following instructions
  • help develop an awareness of their place in the world, not just their ‘bubble’
  • help them find their passion (what is their X-Factor?), not ‘one size fits all’


The HELIX programme takes place throughout the school.


HELIX activities

Intercultural experiences

The Markham community is enriched by the blend of local and international staff and students. Through shared experiences, we all have the opportunity to celebrate and promote our diversity and identity via events such as the International Food Fair, the ‘Tinkuy’ Festival which celebrates the local cultures of Peru or our exchange programme with other Round Square schools.

Outdoor experiences

These reflect the Round Square ideals of Kurt Hahn through a personal challenge, service to others, initiative, leadership and teamwork. Included in this are the Outdoor Education Programme, the CAS programme, The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award as well as, both national and international educational trips, sporting activities and events.

Our desire is that students find value in experiencing all of the strands in varying degrees. The learning afforded by participation in these ‘strands’ fulfils the CAS requirements for both the National Programme and the IB Diploma. In addition, a large number of leadership opportunities exist for all Sixth Form students under the auspices of the HELIX programme. 



Additionally, the programme includes extracurricular activities in all three sections of the School.



We continue to provide a strong offering of extracurricular activities to all our students to foster a well-rounded education designed to allow them to explore their interests outside the classroom. In Early Years we have arts, music, dance, and physical activities. In Lower School, we have a wider range of options including activities led by our Upper School students and also those in which a mix of both Upper School and Lower School students participate. In the Upper School, activities such as competitive sports, music and drama continue to thrive, and students have taken the opportunity to develop as global citizens through their involvement in MUN, debate, International award and a variety of service projects. Such activities enable the students to develop new skills, reinforce learning in the classroom, and further develop communication and leadership skills.


After-school activities are offered for all children in Pre-Kinder, Kinder and Primary 1. These activities are scheduled from 13:15 until 14:15 Monday to Friday. These usually include, amongst others, the following choices:


Drama Arts and crafts
Basketball Chess Jewellery making
Outdoor games Gymnastics Modern dance
Cooking Peruvian Dance Origami

After-school (paid) activities in the Early Years usually include the following choices:

  • Ballet
  • Tae Kwon Do
  • Instrumental music lessons (London College of Music programme)
  • Saturday sports academies (includes football, basketball, softball, hockey, table tennis, gymnastics, volleyball, taekwondo and gross motor coordination academies)
Activities take place at 14:40 until 15:30, Monday to Thursday and are taught by school staff and external specialists. From 15:30 until 16:30 team selections take place.
The Lower School offers a wide variety of activities, ranging from cricket to gardening, arts and crafts to robotics and has a balance of sports, creative arts and educational options, including:
Athletics Gymnastics Plasticine
Arts & Crafts Jewellery Rugby
Ballet Language games Sewing
Basketball Lego Softball
Chess Lego Robotics Speech & debate
Comic drawing Lower School newspaper Supervised study
Cricket Modern dance Table tennis
Football Origami Typing
Fun science experiments Peruvian dance Volleyball
Gardening Photography  

All pupils participate in at least one after-school activity per week from an extensive list (there are currently 75 options available). These activities, taught by staff volunteers and brought-in specialists, take place from 14:50 until 15:45 (early activities) and 15:45 until 17:00 (late activities) Monday to Friday.


After-school activities in the Upper School include the following (may vary):


Drama group (Spanish and English) Percussion ensemble Weights and fitness
Spanish play Rock group Volleyball (boys and girls)
Arts and crafts Choir Football (boys and girls) ADCA
Batik Markham surfing team Rugby (boys and girls)
International Award Swimming team and open swimming Aerobics (dance and step)
Junior debate (P6-S2) Climbing Cricket (boys and girls)
Dedo Verde Gardening activity Squash Mountain biking
PDA Debate senior (S3-UB) Surfing for beginners Rollerblading
Social service (various projects) Table tennis Orchestra (strings, winds and percussions)
Cooking Hockey (boys and girls) Athletics ADCA
Knitting Basketball (boys and girls) ADCA M.U.N. and International Relations (currently rated amongst the top 150 international teams)