Through the teaching of Religious Education, we intend to make a distinctive contribution to the school curriculum by developing pupils' knowledge and understanding of religion, religious beliefs, practices, language and traditions and their influence on individuals, communities, societies and cultures. We aim to promote knowledge and understanding of Catholic faith and life. Religious Education aims to enable pupils to consider and respond to a range of important questions related to their own spiritual development, the development of values and attitudes and fundamental questions concerning the meaning and purpose of life.
Religious Education is an essential component of a broad and balanced education.
Religious Education is concerned with the deep meaning that individuals and groups make of their experiences and how this helps them give purpose to their lives. It aims to engender in the children a curiosity in the ultimate questions about human life, its origin and purpose and to develop the skills required to engage in the examination of and reflection upon religious belief and practice.
In line with Bishops’ Conference recommendations, 10% of curriculum time is allocated to Religious Education. R.E. is taught as explicit lessons but is also embedded in other areas of the curriculum and day-to-day life of the school.
To fulfil this, ‘The Way, the Truth and the Life’ and ‘Come and See’ programmes of work are used in conjunction with the Diocesan ‘I Can Statements’ throughout the school.
- EYFS - R.E. is taught in topics and in blocks supported by the Diocesan ‘I Can Statements’.
- KS1 - R.E. is taught in topics as per the ‘Diocesan of East Anglia R.E. Curriculum Plan for Primary Schools’ supported by the ‘Diocesan I Can Statements’. Learning is done in termly topics. R.E. is taught for 2 hours and 15 minutes each week.
- KS2 - R.E. is taught in topics as per the ‘Diocesan of East Anglia R.E. Curriculum Plan for Primary Schools’ supported by the ‘Diocesan I Can Statements’. Learning is done in termly topics. R.E. is taught for 2 hours and 30 minutes each week.
Talk for learning is a crucial component in R.E. lessons. Higher level questions are used by teachers to develop children’s thinking and understanding.
Teachers undertake a programme of induction upon commencing work at St. Mary’s to develop their understanding of the Catholic ethos and teaching.
Assessment, Monitoring, Recording and Reporting
- Assessment of standards is carried out according to Diocesan guidelines using the criteria in the Levels of Attainment booklet agreed by the Bishops’ Conference.
- Assessment tasks, classroom conferences and creative output for each module support teachers in making accurate assessments. These tasks also ensure consistency of levelling across the school.
- All children are assessed in all six modules over the year.
- Each teacher keeps a portfolio of three pupils’ work (from across the ability range) to allow a more in-depth tracking of progress to be made. These portfolios are held by class teachers and are available for inspection.
- Monitoring of teaching and learning, a book scrutiny and a planning scrutiny are carried out every year.
- Progress and achievement in Religious Education is reported to parents/carers in a written report at the end of each academic year.
- Teachers work hard to ensure there is a good balance between creativity and written outcomes in the teaching and learning of RE across the school.
Religious Education at St Mary’s develops pupils’…
- Knowledge and understanding of the Catholic faith and life;
- Knowledge and understanding of, and their ability to respond to, Christianity, other principal world religions, other religious traditions and world views;
- Understanding and respect for different religions, beliefs, values and traditions (including ethical life stances), through exploring issues within and between faiths;
- Understanding of the influence of faith and belief on individuals, societies, communities and cultures;
- Skills of enquiry and response through the use of religious vocabulary, questioning and empathy;
- Skills of reflection, expression, application, analysis and evaluation of beliefs, values and practices, and the communication of personal responses to these.
Religious Education at St Mary’s encourages pupils to…
- Consider challenging questions of the meaning and purpose of life; beliefs about God, the self and the nature of reality, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human;
- Understand the influence of religion on individuals, families, communities and cultures;
- Learn from different religions, beliefs, values and traditions while exploring questions of meaning and their own beliefs;
- Learn about religious and ethical teaching, enabling them to make reasoned and informed responses to religious, moral and social issues;
- Develop their sense of identity and belonging, preparing them for life as citizens in a plural, global society;
- Develop respect for and sensitivity to others, in particular those whose faiths and beliefs are different from their own.
Religious Education at St Mary’s enhances pupils’…
- Awareness and understanding of religions and beliefs, teachings, practices and forms of expression;
- Ability to reflect on, consider, analyse, interpret and evaluate issues of truth, belief, faith and ethics and to communicate their responses.
Religious Education at St Mary’s offers…
- Opportunities to develop personal reflection and spirituality.
R.E. and St. Mary’s Drivers
Here at St. Mary’s, our whole curriculum is underpinned by our FAITH and three other drivers - COMMUNITY, COMMUNICATION and WHOLE CHILD.
These drivers are reflected in our R.E. curriculum.
St Mary’s is a multicultural school and we celebrate our richness of diversity. That diversity is echoed in the realisation that the Catholic Church is a local, regional and global community. Throughout the school, pupils study the formation of the community of the Church and what it means to be part of that community.
We believe that communication is an essential life skill and feel passionately about enabling all pupils to develop effective communication skills. As part of the R.E. curriculum, there are many opportunities for pupils to communicate their learning through written and oral presentations and creative output such as role play.
Our curriculum is designed to meet the needs of all the children in our school and to prepare them for success in life, however and whatever that might mean to them as they grow and develop. The R.E. curriculum is designed to allow all pupils to flourish. Lessons are both academic and creative to allow all to be successful.
The spirituality of a child is important in their sense of self and this is encouraged and developed through the R.E. curriculum too.
R.E. and Cultural Capital
In R.E. there is great potential for children to acquire cultural capital in the following ways:
- The study of other world faiths;
- Using works of art as a springboard for learning;
- Visits to other places of worship;
- Attending church services;
- Drama (role play) used as a teaching technique;
- Dramatic performances of religious events, e.g. the Nativity story;
- Spirituality and reflection sessions;
- Charitable giving;
- Partnerships with charitable foundations such as CAFOD and FIND;
- Collective Worship with a variety of themes.