At Chater Junior School, we value and celebrate the diversity of the community we serve. Through the teaching of Religious Education, we seek to promote and encourage respect for all people from different religions and world views. We recognise that religion has played a vital role in the history of Britain and continues to do so today. Each year group learns about Christianity and another world faith, to recognise the Christian heritage of Great Britain and the diversity of religion in our country. Our curriculum offers children the opportunity to learn about the festivals, rituals and beliefs of a wide range of faiths. Regular opportunities are provided to discuss pupil thoughts on issues that will help to develop their sense of belonging and identity, for example human rights, equality, tolerance, morality, charity and kindness. We seek to enable children to question what they hear and form their own beliefs. Our children grapple with life’s big questions and seek to come to their own conclusions whilst reflecting on the impact that religion has on their own lives and the wider world.
At Chater JM School, we ensure that our RE planning follows a clear progression of skills and ensures that there is full coverage of, the Hertfordshire agreed syllabus 2023-2028, to give the children knowledge about world religions and the opportunities for the consideration of moral and ethical issues. It also provides space for them to reflect on philosophical questions and develop their thought processes. The Key stage 2 curriculum is divided into four sections, focussing on different world religions, with the thread of Christianity running through each year group and the Understanding Christianity scheme of work is used. Where possible, links are made to other subjects to help children make further connections and develop their learning. RE is taught discreetly in class but also plays an important part in whole school activities, for example, school assemblies where spiritual, moral, ethical and philosophical matters are considered and discussed with the children and through class discussion.
As of September 2023, we have begun to incorporate a ‘world views approach’. This involves educating our pupils as young citizens, not just of Hertfordshire, but also of the United Kingdom and the world, so that they can contribute positively to inclusive and safe communities in which everyone is valued, kept safe from harm and which embrace and celebrate diversity. Teachers plan for opportunities where pupils can question how their world view is likely to influence and be influenced by their ‘beliefs, values, behaviours, experiences, identities, and commitments’ (Religion and Worldviews: The Way Forward, p4).
We also invite leaders from the main religious faiths to visit the school, to ensure that the children have a broad and balanced view of religion in Britain today. School trips have been arranged across the key stage which are designed to be relevant to and enhance the children’s experience in the classroom.
Before teaching each unit teachers will:
- - Create a Big Question, which the pupils will answer at the end of the unit.
- - Assess children’s prior knowledge and skills and use this to ensure their planning builds upon this.
During each unit teachers will:
- Ensure each lesson has a key question that children will be able to answer through their work and will help them answer the Big Question.
- Develop the pupil’s use of key religious vocabulary highlighting new vocabulary to pupils and displaying it in the lessons for them to use in throughout each unit of work.
- Give pupil’s the opportunity to develop and extend their own thinking and their understanding of Christianity and the other major world faiths, as a contribution to their understanding of the world and their own experience within it.
- Provide pupils with opportunities to make links and use knowledge from other subjects, in particular extended writing opportunities.
At the end of each unit pupils will:
- Complete the assessment task.
- Reflect on the skills they have learnt.
After each unit teachers will:
- Assess children’s ability and skills acquired in the unit.
What will this look like?
Through pupil voice we will see:
- - Pupils’ ability to explain the impact of faith/lack of faith in their own lives and its impact on their own behaviour.
- - Pupils show tolerance and understanding of beliefs that are different to their own.
- - Pupils express their passion for RE by talking enthusiastically about their learning and sharing their knowledge and understanding.
Through learning walks we will see:
- - Pupils demonstrating their love of RE through their high levels of engagement.
- - Teachers asking reflective questions that require pupils to have an opinion on world faiths and their own beliefs.
- - Pupils develop a deeper understanding of religious vocabulary and symbols, which will be present in the pupil’s work.
- - Pupils discussing their learning and explain how it links to previous lessons.
- - A clear sequence of lessons that allow pupils to acquire knowledge and use this to answer their big questions.
In the pupil’s learning we will see:
- - Pupils discussing similarities and differences between world faiths.
- - Impact of religion in our local community and in the wider world.
- - A clear sequence of lessons that are linked to the big question.
- - A piece of work that answers the big question and demonstrates pupil’s understanding of the unit.
- - Take pride in their learning and present work of a high standard.
- - Differentiated activities that allow all pupils to make progress.