Mrs N Shreeve (Infant School) and Mrs L Rooney (Junior School) are our Religious Education (RE) Curriculum Leaders.
Religious education enables children to investigate and reflect on some of the most fundamental questions asked by people. At Chalfont St Giles Village School we develop the children’s knowledge and understanding of the major world faiths. We enable children to develop a sound knowledge not only of Christianity but also of other world religions, especially those that are the main faiths of children within our school.
RE also gives opportunities for children to
Explore different beliefs and faiths through different religions, taking account of non-religious views.
Consider the meaning and value of life within the world we live.
Question and reflect on world issues.
The aims of religious education are to help children:
Understand the nature, role and influence of religion in the world;
Pursue personal quest for meaning, purpose and value;
Formulate reasoned opinion/argument and handle controversial issues and truth claims;
Develop understanding of and respect for different beliefs and lifestyles.
RE lessons also reinforce our British values by promoting messages of tolerance and respect for others. During RE lessons we actively promote diversity through celebrations of different faiths and cultures.
Our school curriculum for religious education meets the requirements of the 1988 Education Reform Act (ERA). The ERA stipulates that religious education is compulsory for all children. The ERA allows parents to withdraw their child from religious education classes if they so wish, although this should only be done once the parents have given written notice to the school governors. The ERA also allows teachers to refuse to teach religious education, but only after they have given due notice of their intention to the school governors. The religious education curriculum forms an important part of our school’s spiritual, moral and social teaching. It also promotes education for citizenship. Our school RE curriculum is based on the Buckinghamshire LEA Agreed Syllabus and it meets all the requirements set out in that document. The ERA states that the RE syllabus should reflect the fact that the religious traditions in Great Britain are in the main Christian, and that it should, at the same time, take account of the teachings and practices of other major religions.
We base our teaching and learning style in RE on the key principle that good teaching in RE allows children both to learn about religious traditions and to reflect on what the religious ideas and concepts mean to them. Our teaching enables children to extend their own sense of values and promotes their spiritual growth and development. We encourage children to think about their own views and values in relation to the themes and topics studied in the RE curriculum.
Our teaching and learning styles in RE enable children to build on their own experiences and extend their knowledge and understanding of religious traditions. We use their experiences of religious festivals such as Easter, Diwali, Passover etc. to develop their religious thinking and understanding of what these means to the followers within these faiths.
We provide suitable learning opportunities for all children by matching the challenge of the task to the ability of the child. We achieve this in a variety of ways, for example, by:
setting common tasks which are open-ended and can have a variety of responses encouraging children to develop their questioning skills.
setting tasks of increasing difficulty (we do not expect all children to complete all tasks);
providing resources of different complexity, adapted to the ability of the child;
We plan our religious education curriculum in accordance with the LEA’s Agreed Syllabus. We ensure that the topics studied in religious education build upon prior learning. We offer opportunities for children of all abilities to develop their skills and knowledge in each unit, and we ensure that the planned progression built into the scheme of work offers the children an increasing challenge as they move through the school.
Learning in this phase is structured through the Early Years Foundation curriculum and not through the agreed syllabus. Teachers plan work using the Early learning goals to provide children with some context of belief, belonging and relationships from different cultural and global issues.
pupils explore Christianity and at least one other principal religion (Judaism).
They learn about different beliefs about God and the world around them. They encounter and respond to a range of stories, artefacts and other religious materials. They learn to recognise that beliefs are expressed in a variety of ways, and begin to use specialist vocabulary. They begin to understand the importance and value of religion and belief, especially for other children and their families.
Pupils ask relevant questions and develop a sense of wonder about the world, using their imaginations. They talk about what is important to them and others, valuing themselves, reflecting on their own feelings and experiences and developing a sense of belonging
pupils learn about Christianity and at least two of the other principal religions (Hinduism and Islam), recognising the impact of religion and belief locally, nationally and globally. They make connections between differing aspects of religion and consider the different forms of religious expression. They consider the beliefs, teachings, practices and ways of life central to religion. They learn about sacred texts and other sources and consider their meanings. They begin to recognise diversity in religion, learning about similarities and differences both within and between religions and beliefs and the importance of dialogue between them. They extend the range and use of specialist vocabulary. They recognise the challenges involved in distinguishing between ideas of right and wrong, and valuing what is good and true. They communicate their ideas, recognising other people’s viewpoints. They consider their own beliefs and values and those of others in the light of their learning in religious education.
The Agreed Syllabus provides guidance on assessment and should be used on completion of a unit of work.
We encourage children to reflect and assess their own understanding at the end of each lesson. This assessment is used to plan future lessons.
Our children enjoy learning about other religions and why people choose, or choose not to follow a religion. Through their R.E. learning, the children are able to make links between their own lives and those of others in their community and in the wider world, developing an understanding of other people’s cultures and ways of life. As such, R.E. is invaluable in an ever changing and shrinking world.
We strive to ensure that our children’s attainment and progress is in line with or exceeding their potential when we consider the varied starting points of children. We measure this carefully using a range of materials, but always considering the expectations set. We have high aspirations and aim for all children to be academically, emotionally and physically prepared for the next stage of their education and ready for life in Modern Britain and the wider world.