It is our intent for the Religious Education element of our school curriculum to engage, inspire, challenge and encourage pupils, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to answer challenging questions, explore different religious beliefs, values and traditions and develop a more rigorous understanding of the numerous religious traditions, beliefs and practices that are followed in our multi-cultural society. We want them to know how religious education promotes discernment and enables pupils to combat prejudice, preparing them for adult life, employment and life-long learning.
At Shay Lane Primary School our Religious Education (R.E.) Curriculum is taught in line with the Wakefield Agreed Syllabus 2018.
The curriculum for R.E. aims to ensure that all pupils:
We encourage our children to develop tolerance and respect of others’ views whilst being secure in the knowledge that their own views, opinions and feelings will be valued.
Our children are taught to develop their knowledge and understanding of religions and worldviews, recognising their local, national and global contexts.
Children at Shay Lane Primary School are taught to use their subject specific language, to raise questions and begin to express their own views and questions in response to the religions and cultures that they are learning about.
Pupils are taught the knowledge, skills and understanding when learning about Christian, Muslim and Jewish people. Children will also be exposed to other religions through themes and celebrations.
Children will learn about religions through first-hand experiences with artefacts, stories, religious buildings and visitors.
We have strong links with the local churches within the community and are regularly visited by our local Reverend who deliveries assemblies to our children.
How is the subject taught?
R.E. is taught through discrete weekly lessons, as well as special themed days or weeks.
A term programme maps out the coverage of the discrete teaching and learning opportunities for children to develop their knowledge and interest in this subject.
Within each R.E lesson class teachers carefully plan the specific outcomes for their year group, based upon age the appropriate knowledge and skills that is expected in accordance with the Wakefield Agreed Syllabus 2018. Our teaching and learning opportunities allow all children to reflect on other religions and make comparison to their own lives.
New vocabulary is taught, with the key emphasis on common words and phrases relating to religions. Although we actively introduce and are ambitious with the language we use, we understand the importance of not over complicating this language with very young children, but ensuring underlying principles and meanings of the words are taught and understood.
Children are introduced to and reminded of key vocabulary. Questioning is used to check their understanding and prior knowledge, before new concepts or skills are introduced. Modelling is used by class teachers to clarify expectations. Children are then given plentiful opportunities to consolidate, build upon and apply basic skills and knowledge to tasks.
In R.E lessons we explain to children that they are learning to:
In addition to discrete teaching in R.E, learning about the backgrounds, cultures and beliefs of others permeates throughout our curriculum and is one of our key subject drivers in our school curriculum. Through studying a range of people from the past and present, locally and globally, children are taught to challenge stereotypes connected to gender, wealth, disability, cultural and religious background and are educated that differences should be celebrated and are not a barrier to achievement or relationships.
Links with other subject areas, as well as our values approach, forms part of our overall ethos of celebrating diversity within school and ensures that elements of the R.E curriculum are accessed by children throughout the year.
How do we know that our children are making progress?
Ongoing assessments of the children’s knowledge and skills is observed by the class teacher.
Misconceptions related to religions are explored and addressed. Children’s outcomes are compared to the subject specific skills and knowledge documents. At the end of a block of discrete teaching (or term) subject leaders gather an overview of children’s outcomes in each subject area. This is used to plan appropriate next steps for their future learning, as well as provide an overview of learning within a subject area across the whole school.
How do we promote Communication & Language (including reading), Personal, Social and Emotional Development and Physical Health and Wellbeing?
Our R.E. curriculum in school promotes some of our key curriculum drivers. Children are taught about the importance of building positive relationships with others. Stories from a wide range of religions emphasise the importance of caring for one another and how to be a good friend. Children are taught about the importance of ‘Belonging’, whether that is being part of a family, class, school, club or religion, they are encouraged to be proud of the person that they are, the work that they do and the choices that they make.
What wider opportunities are provided for our children?
We have strong links with the local Churches within our immediate community. Children regularly visit the churches, both to take part in celebrations with their parents and carers, as well as learn about Christian values and beliefs. Visits enhance teaching opportunities as children take part in baptisms and wedding services and learn the meaning behind them.
Children are also given the opportunity to visit places of worship from other religions. Where this is not always possible, members of other religious communities come into school to provide workshops and to work with children.
We use the Wakefield Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education- please see the school office for copies.