RE in the Curriculum
As a Church of England School, the Christian faith is the foundation of everything that we do at St Paul’s. In all learning and life experiences, we aim to fulfil our school vision (as above). We promote an environment where all children feel known, accepted, and valued as individuals, within a caring community, where our Christian faith affects not only what we teach, but also how we teach.
We believe that it is fundamental for the children to belong to a safe and nurturing community, founded on strong Christian values where children will develop an array of skills that will enable them to make their own positive contribution to our global society.
St Paul’s is a voluntary aided school and RE is taught in accordance with the trust deed. R.E. is given a high profile and is regarded as a priority within the school. Our whole curriculum is shaped by our school vision which aims to enable all children, regardless of background, ability or additional needs, to flourish and become the very best version of themselves that they can possibly be. In addition, the R.E. curriculum will contribute to British values and spiritual moral social and cultural development.
The statement of entitlements emphasises the entitlement of all children to receive a high quality Religious Education which supports them in all aspects of their learning.
Religious education in a Church school should enable every child to flourish and to live life in all its fullness. (John 10:10). It will help educate for dignity and respect encouraging all to live well together
The statement lays out the details of coverage of the RE curriculum in church schools. We ensure that we fully meet the requirement of the statement of entitlement for Church schools.
Our aims for all the children in RE are:
- To enable all children at St Paul’s to become religiously literate
- Through the use of a systematic enquiry-based R.E. curriculum, the children are encouraged to develop the ability to:
- be critical thinkers,
- engage with texts,
- to ask deep and meaningful questions and to make connections within and across religions and worldviews,
- be able to reflect, respond and express their own religious, spiritual and/or philosophical convictions.
- To help them develop a deep knowledge and understanding of religions and worldviews, belief systems, values and practices so they are able to make their own choices and decisions concerning religion and belief.
- To provoke (possibly change provoke to - encourage them to ask) challenging questions about the ultimate meaning of life, beliefs about God, the nature of reality and morality.
- To develop pupils’ knowledge and understanding of Christianity, other principal world religions, religious traditions and world-views, which offer answers to ultimate questions.
- To encourage pupils to develop their sense of identity and belonging, in order to flourish within communities, as responsible citizens in society and global communities.
- To teach pupils to develop respect for others and their beliefs and helps to challenge prejudice.
OR to offer opportunities for children to develop empathy towards people of similar or differing religious or worldviews to their own.
- To prompt pupils to consider their responsibilities to themselves and to others, and to explore how they might contribute to their communities and to wider society encouraging empathy, generosity and compassion.
The Statement of Entitlement sets out the amount of dedicated curriculum time, meeting explicitly RE objectives, that should be allocated to the teaching of the RE curriculum in church schools. We ensure that we fully meet the requirement of this document.
Our RE curriculum is enquiry led. Each unit begins with a big question which challenges and encourages the children to investigate and explore the area of learning, to evaluate and communicate their understanding and learning, and reflect on both the big questions and the subsidiary questions. The curriculum was designed (and developed) by the London Diocesan Board of Schools and incorporates Christianity and the principal world religions. The design of the curriculum ensures that children are given sequential learning opportunities, both in terms of knowledge and skills, throughout their time at St Paul’s School. Beyond the R.E. curriculum, discrete bible stories are taught alongside each topic. This helps build up biblical literacy as well as providing wider opportunities to teach the core concepts of the Bible.
By including R.E. regularly on the CPD programme, the SLT aim to ensure that teachers feel confident when teaching R.E. A teacher that feels confident will be able to:
- Plan and deliver lessons that will engage and challenge the children.
- Provide marking that encourages deeper thinking
- Assess accurately to ensure that data is accurate and reflects the progress that the children are making
Staff adopt/use a variety of teaching styles and stimuli when teaching R.E. One lesson might be a whole class discussion while another might have time for group or partner talk. The teacher might use artefacts, religious paintings, music, drama, a visit to a place of worship or a visitor into school to engage the children, promote learning and encourage the development of thinking skills and times of quiet reflection.
Through focused marking teachers seek to encourage the children to think deeply about aspects of their work and also to promote a sense of pride in their R.E. knowledge and the work they have produced.
Each year there are regular book looks, lesson observations and pupil voice meetings in order to ensure the quality of R.E. lessons is good or better and that the children are increasing and developing their knowledge and understanding of Christianity and the principal world religions being studied.
By the time children leave our school they will:
- 1. Be able to hold a balanced and well informed conversation about religion and worldviews. (religious Literacy)
- 2. Have made good or better academic progress from their starting point, as a result of good quality R.E. teaching, accurate assessment and challenging target setting
- 3. Be able to reflect, respond and express their own religious, spiritual and/or philosophical thoughts
- 4. Have the ability to exemplify the School’s Christian values in all aspects of life that are rooted in the teachings of the Bible
- 5. Have a sense of self, identity and belonging, enabling them to flourish within their local community, and to become responsible citizens both locally and in the wider world
- 6. Feel confident to ask and offer possible answers to challenging questions about the meaning of life, beliefs, and the nature of reality and morality.
- 7. Be able to make their own choices and decisions concerning religion and belief based on a deep knowledge and understanding of religions and worldviews, belief systems, values and practices.
- 8. Have a secure understanding and knowledge of Christianity and the World religions studied and be confident to answer ultimate questions.
- 9. Show respect, tolerance and understanding to peoples of all religions and beliefs.
- 10. Have a deeper understanding of what it means to live life in all its fullness