Religious Education Vision
Within our school, we have a range of ethnicities and religions. It is important for children to be aware of different religions which our curriculum covers. It is vital for children to be able to listen to and share beliefs but also respect them and respond sensitively to challenging questions. Our curriculum is designed to ensure children have an understanding of Christianity and Islam, to know the meaning behind religious and sacred festivals, to get a sense of what it means to belong, to learn about sacred places and sacred books and to deepen their understanding of how to care for others and the world.
RE allows children to explore big questions about life, to find out what people believe and what difference this makes to how they live, so that pupils can make sense of religion, reflecting on their own ideas and ways of living.
The questions explored in RE will enable children to think; to express their personal beliefs; develop emotionally and identify similarities and differences between faiths and religions.
My name is Mrs Farrer and I am the RE subject leader at Alexandra Infants’ school. My promise to our children is to ensure that they all have an understanding about religion and the importance of respecting others’ beliefs.
The curriculum that we follow is the agreed Syllabus for Stoke on Trent which has been written by the RE Today Services. This ensures we are providing the children with the necessary learning to be successful within Religious Education. We have used the syllabus to develop a stimulating long term plan for our that builds on prior learning and ignites new learning. The curriculum is relevant to all of our pupils as RE is a statutory requirement, it begins by looking at personal special times and places which then leads on to looking specifically at religious sacred times, places and objects. In Year 1, Christianity is the main focus religion and then in Year 2 alongside Christianity, Islam is also introduced and explored.
I am passionate about children learning about other religions but also embracing their own. Within the syllabus, it highlights the importance of sharing your own views and beliefs and to respond sensitively to others as they may not be the same. Religion is celebrated within our school, as we celebrate festivals that the children and staff partake in such as Christmas, Eid, Easter and Ramadan. My aim is to provide a curriculum that is current and relatable for the children.
RE floor books celebrate the work that the children take part in and enable me to carefully monitor the quality of the RE curriculum.
At Alexandra Infants’, the RE curriculum is split into learning challenge questions. These questions are the overall topic; each year group has a set of questions to complete over the year. These topics build on from each other as the children progress through the school. Within the RE Syllabus, the three key areas that underpin pupil’s learning in RE are: Believing, Expressing and Living. In EYFS, children will encounter Christianity and other faiths as part of their growing sense of self, their own community and their place within in. In, KS1, children are taught the knowledge, skills and understanding of these areas when learning about Christians, Muslims and Jewish people.
As stated in the Agreed RE Syllabus for Stoke on Trent; the principal aim of RE is to engage pupils in systematic enquiry into significant human questions which religion and worldviews address, so that they can develop the understanding and skills needed to appreciate and appraise varied responses to these questions, as well as develop responses of their own.
Alongside the RE Syllabus, we include our Alexandra Promise that supports the RE curriculum by providing children with activities such as:
- Make and taste chapatis
- Walk to a local landmark
- Visit a place of worship
In order for our children to understand religious aspects, it is important for them to visit places of worship. It is important to speak to members of the community within these religious places to provide expert knowledge. By visiting places of worship, it provides the children with experiences that they may not experience at home, it allows them to see similarities and differences between a church and a mosque. It deepens the children’s understanding and that is why educational visits are vital within the curriculum. These are some of the activities that our children have had the opportunity to experience:
- Local area walks to locate local landmarks
- Visit to the local church
- Visit to the local mosque
- Christmas service at the local church