To inspire religious literacy in pupils; developing an understanding of how people of faith live, think and express their beliefs.
According to the R.E. Council, ‘The ability to understand the faith or belief of individuals and communities, and how these may shape their culture and behaviour, is an invaluable asset for children in modern day Britain. Explaining religious and non-religious world views in an academic way allows young people to engage with the complexities of belief, avoid stereotyping and contribute to an informed debate.’
Above all, we want our children to develop a respect for other beliefs and religions and appreciate and celebrate the diverse world in which they live. We want to equip children with not only the minimum statutory requirements of the Religious Education National Curriculum but to prepare them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life.
Religious Education is a statutory subject of the curriculum for all pupils in each year group, including Reception. In line with the 1988, 1996 and 1998 Education Acts all children will receive Religious Education unless parents/carers formally withdraw their own children (S352(1) (a).
At Great Ponton Church of England Primary School, we ensure that we comply with the legal requirements for RE by following the Lincolnshire Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education 2018-2023. ‘Every agreed syllabus should ‘reflect the fact that the religious traditions in Great Britain are in the main Christian, while taking account of the teaching and practices of the other principal religions represented in Great Britain.’ (s375 (3) Education Act 1996).
In addition, we also use Understanding Christianity: Text, Impact, and Connections. This resource supports the teaching of Christianity in RE. It explores the significant theological concepts within Christianity as part of developing their wider religious, theological and cultural literacy. This is compliant with the Lincolnshire Agreed Syllabus.
At Great Ponton, RE is taught during weekly lessons, but occasionally there may be a focus day. As recommended in the Lincolnshire Agreed Syllabus 2018 - 2023, as set out in the Dearing Review (1996), Key Stage 1 children will receive at least thirty-six hours per year and Key Stage Two will receive at least forty-five hours over the school year.
We have developed a clear progression of skills for each year group, which enables pupils to build on and develop their knowledge and skills each year. In order to support children in their ability to ‘know more and remember more’ there are regular opportunities to review the learning taken place in previous topics, as well as previous lessons.
Effective use of educational visits are planned, to further enrich and enhance the pupil’s learning experiences within the RE curriculum.
Through our Religious Education Curriculum, we aim to:
- Explore core beliefs and theological concepts through disciplinary knowledge in RE:
- Theology (Believing) – This is about believing. It looks at where beliefs come from, how they have changed over time, how they are applied differently in different contexts and how they relate to each other.
- Human and Social Sciences (Living) – This is about living. It explores the diverse ways in which people practise their beliefs. It engages with the impact of beliefs on individuals.
- Philosophy (Thinking) - This is about thinking. It is about finding out how and whether things make sense. It takes seriously questions about reality, knowledge and existence.
- Teach our pupils to understand and respect the importance of religious beliefs in the world around them and encourage them to respect the right of others to hold different beliefs, values and ideas.
- Offer opportunities for personal refection and pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, as it encourages them to examine the significance of their learning in relation to themselves and others.
- Enables pupils to explore their own beliefs (whether they are religious or not), ideas, feelings, experiences and values in the light of what they learn.
- Encourage our pupils to ask significant and highly reflective questions about the meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human.
- Develop an aptitude for dialogue so that pupils can participate positively in our society with its diverse religious and non-religious world views.
- Give pupils the knowledge and understanding to deal positively with controversial issues, to manage strongly held differences of belief and to challenge stereotypes and prejudice.
EYFS children will be guided in their learning through four overarching principles for a unique child, positive relationships, enabling environments and learning and development. They will build a good foundation for igniting their curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, forming relationships and thriving at school through the Seven Areas of Learning.
- Prime Areas of Communication and Language, Physical Development and Personal, Social and Emotional Development.
- Specific Areas of Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design.
The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum supports children’s understanding of Religious Education through the planning and teaching of ‘Understanding the World – People, Cultures and Communities’. Children are encouraged to use their imagination and curiosity to develop their appreciation of, and wonder at, the world in which they live. Exploring others views, cultures and beliefs supports children in developing their views and beliefs about themselves, their family and community. In finding out about others, young children are encouraged to reflect on belief, culture and practice and explore religion and faith through observing festivals and celebrations, sharing non – fiction texts and reading stories from religious texts, handling artefacts, engaging in role-play and drama based activities, and through discussions with those around them.
For pupils with SEND, it is important to focus on the pupils’ strengths as well as identifying areas where they need more help, practice and consolidation. In general, pupils should have the opportunity to develop all the concepts, regardless of their SEN or disability. However, the approach to these concepts may have to be done differently with different groups of pupils.
The children at Great Ponton Church of England Primary School enjoy learning about other religions and why people choose, or choose not to follow a religion. Through their R.E learning, the children are able to make links between their own lives and those of others in their community and in the wider world, developing an understanding of other people’s cultures and ways of life. As a school, we believe that R.E is invaluable in an ever changing world.
We measure the impact of our curriculum through the following methods:
- Pupils’ progress in RE is based on the expected outcomes outlined in the Lincolnshire Agreed Syllabus and in Understanding Christianity. This is clearly mapped in our Skills and knowledge progression map.
- Summative assessments are made by teachers at the end of a unit of work and at the end of each academic year. Teachers can use evidence from pupil discussions, written outcomes, pupil interviews (pupil voice), and other creative outcomes, such as drama, art and music.
- Pupils’ books and standards in RE are scrutinised termly by the RE lead. Where appropriate this is followed up by CPD for staff delivering RE lessons.
- RE is monitored by the School governors.
- Progress in RE is reported annually to parents and has a prominent position in the end of year report.