At Evendons we value a broad, balanced curriculum and part of that is the teaching of Religious Education (RE). We believe that all children, from any faith or culture, should feel welcomed into the school community and this is fostered through the learning and exposure to a variety of religions, cultures and worldviews. We follow the Discovery RE scheme, which fosters an enquiry based approach to RE learning.
Religious Education Intent
With these aspirations, our intent for the RE curriculum are:
- To know about and understand a range of religions, cultures and worldviews.
- To experience and learn from first and secondary sources about religions, cultures and worldviews.
- To express ideas and insights about the nature, significance and impact of religions, cultures and worldviews.
- To gain and deploy the skills needed to engage seriously with religions and worldviews.
- To respect ideas, religions and worldviews which may differ to our own.
- To have opportunities to gain cultural capital both within school and in the local community.
Through our curriculum, we hope for children to develop a secure understanding of the knowledge and concepts surrounding RE as well as developing positive attitudes to cultures and beliefs which vary from their own.
Across the school we aim to develop children’s skills of enquiry, reasoned argument and reflection. We are a multi-faith school and offer a rich and varied curriculum to reflect this. Our children are taught about a range of religions and learn to respect and ask questions about different religions, traditions and cultures around the world. Across the school year we aim to make R.E relevant by studying and celebrating real events, from holding a whole school Diwali day, learning about various aspects of the Hindi culture to celebrate with our community in this special occasion to looking at Saints days in assemblies.
We believe our children learn best from real experiences in order to capture their imaginations and encourage curiosity. We try to enhance our curriculum in many ways to ensure this is how children learn and respect different religions. The whole school ethos is to encourage children enquire and ask questions in order to impact on their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. During religious education lessons, children are challenged to push themselves to think outside of their comfort zones and explore their skills, beliefs and ideas; asking questions at all times whilst experiencing practical lessons.
Children are taught to think about their own school and personal values and to understand how people of different backgrounds or beliefs may share similar values whilst differing in other values. Questions are constantly being asked of children whilst allowing them to ask their own questions in order to develop their critical thinking, self-belief and self-confidence. Children exhibit their religious education in many ways, from dance, creativity, writing and role-play in order to fully immerse children in understanding of a topic.
Religious Education Implementation
The school follows a curriculum created by ‘Discovery RE.’- this scheme of work ensures that we are teaching about a multitude of religions that are revisited throughout the Key Stages to enable a progression of learning across the school.
In Early Years the children spend time exploring the religions of Christianity and Judaism in the first two terms. The children think about the celebrated festivals in the Christian calendar, linking this to the celebrations in Judaism. The final term brings this together with exploring special stories and places of a multitude of religions.
Years One and Two build upon this teaching as the children look in more depth at what Christians believe – the children take time to ask ‘Big Questions’ and make connections across religions. The children also learn about Judaism in Year One and are introduced to Islam in Year Two.
Key Stage Two builds upon the learning of Christianity, Sikhism, Judaism and Islam with the addition of Hinduism in Year Three. The children are encouraged to think critically and ask questions of a religion as each half term focuses on a ‘Big Question’.
These religious topics have been chosen specifically from the ‘Discovery RE’ scheme to support and make links with our topics as part of our creative curriculum. Our Long term planning has also been written in line with Pan Berkshire Agreed Syllabus for RE below.
Religious Education Impact
- We have a number of assemblies on religious celebrations throughout the year to inform the children of the different religious events that are happening and to share with the children how they are celebrated. These have been led by a number of different people including staff, parents, visitors and children.
- When there is a Christian celebration approaching, we often have an assembly delivered by Father Richard. He will talk to the children about the celebration and why it is important to Christians.
- When there is a religious celebration approaching, parents and visitors have been invited to come in to talk to the children about the event and share information and artefacts with the children.
- Once a year we hold a Cultural Fair. This is an opportunity for all the different cultures in our school to be represented. A stall is created and the children spend the afternoon immersing themselves in the different cultures we have in our school and learning about things such as the religion of that country, the traditions they have, customary dress and traditional food.
By Emily Ronney – Religious Education Subject Lead