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Our Church School

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What makes our school a special church school?

Our RE Curriculum

RE Intent, Implementation and Impact Statements

Our broad and balanced whole school curriculum, including our RE curriculum, is designed around our school values of Respect, Joy, Truth, Trust, Thankfulness, Forgiveness, Belonging and Friendship, Kindness and Compassion and Determination and Courage and our mission statement:

‘Secure and happy, learning in a safe, nurturing community guided by our God.’

‘When you go through deep waters, I will be with you’ (Isaiah 43:2)

Intent:

At The Minster Church of England Primary School, we believe that the teaching of Religious Education is vital for the development of each child as an individual.  RE contributes to our children’s development; further empowering them to become tolerant, understanding citizens, who live out the British Values and who are spiritually, morally, socially and culturally literate.  We believe that our children should also be able to display religious and theologically literacy.  Our RE curriculum contributes to all of these essential elements of knowledge, concepts and qualities. 

Our intent is that our curriculum is ambitious for all pupils.  We use the Discovery Scheme combined with the Understanding Christianity resource.  It is coherently planned and sequenced including a balanced mixture of Christianity (50%) and world religions (Hinduism, Islam, Sikhism and Judaism with some Buddhism).  Our RE curriculum is successfully adapted, designed and developed for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities by the teacher as necessary.  It is a curriculum that is broad, balanced and inclusive for all pupils.

As a school, we intend that Religious Education will adopt an enquiry- based approach as recommended by Ofsted, beginning with the children’s own life experience before moving into learning about and from religion.

Our curriculum:

  • Provokes challenging questions about the meaning and purpose of life, beliefs, the self, and issues of right and wrong, commitment and belonging.
  • Develops pupils’ knowledge and understanding of Christianity, other principal religions, and religious traditions that examine these questions, fostering personal reflection and spiritual development.
  • Encourages pupils to explore their own beliefs (religious or non-religious), in the light of what they learn, as they examine issues of religious belief and faith and how these impact on personal, institutional and social ethics; and to express their responses.
  • Enables pupils to build their sense of identity and belonging, which helps them flourish within their communities and as citizens in a diverse society.
  • Teaches pupils to develop respect for others, including people with different faiths and beliefs, and helps to challenge prejudice.
  • Prompts pupils to consider their responsibilities to themselves and to others, and to explore how they might contribute to their communities and to wider society.
  • Encourages empathy, generosity and compassion.
  • Develops a sense of awe, wonder and mystery.
  • Nurtures each child’s own spiritual development.

Implementation:

Discovery RE brings together learning about and from religion, questioning and spiritual development in a comprehensive scheme of learning. Teaching strategies are varied and are mindful of preferred learning styles and the need for differentiation. Each enquiry starts from the children’s own life experiences using these as a bridge into the investigation of the religion being studied. Learning is assessed and children have opportunity to express their own thoughts and beliefs and empathise with believers of that religion or belief position.

At The Minster, RE is taught in some year groups (Y2, Y3, Y4, Y6) by skilled and knowledgeable PPA teachers and in others (FS2, Y1, Y5) by the class teachers.  RE is taught as a discrete subject for an hour in each class every week, with appropriate links to other curriculum areas wherever suitable.

In addition to our regular visits to our local Church and from our local Minster, each year group either visits a place of worship of a faith other than Christianity or is visited by a faith representative.

Discovery RE is written as a universal core curriculum provision for all children. Inclusivity is part of its philosophy. Teachers tailor each enquiry to meet the needs of the children in their classes. To support this differentiation, many enquiries suggest creative learning activities that allow children to choose the media with which they work and give them scope to work to their full potential. To further help teachers differentiate for children in KS1 and 2 classes with special educational needs, each enquiry has level exemplars for the full range likely for that age group, allowing children to evidence levels from L1 to L5.

Impact:

Teachers are eager to ensure children are making progress with their learning throughout their RE. Therefore, each enquiry within Discovery and Understanding Christianity has built-in assessment. These tasks provide formal opportunities for teacher assessment of the children’s knowledge of that religion, depth of critical thinking, and ability to answer the enquiry question. This stand-alone evidence is used in conjunction with other evidence such as records of discussions and annotations from other lessons within the enquiry to assist the teacher in reaching a best-fit ‘level’ (Below, Meeting or above Age Related Expectations).   Teacher assessments are an overall judgement based not only on written responses to the focus question, but also observations on how children contribute in class, the confidence and willingness with which they answer questions and share their own ideas, their use of appropriate vocabulary and their recall of appropriate links from previous learning.

Each enquiry has assessment levels and exemplars based on the current nationally agreed levels.  Understanding Christianity Units are assessed similarly with exemplars taken from the Understanding Christianity website.  Staff meet termly for moderation meetings within school and the Subject Leader meets termly with the local Cluster Group to moderate across the Cluster.

Staff update the tracking document termly with their assessments so that the Subject Leader can assess the effectiveness of learning experiences provided.  The Subject Leader also conducts termly pupil interviews.  The link governor joins the Subject Leader on learning walks and book looks at least once a year.  This enables an informed discussion and review of the subject within the school.  This helps the children by enabling the Subject Leader to make informed decisions about necessary changes to any aspect of the planning, implementation and assessment of RE within the school and to update the Action Plan.

 

 

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