Religious Education at Stoke Park Infant School
At Stoke Park Infant School our teaching and learning in religious education (RE) follows the Living Difference III Agreed Syllabus for Hampshire, Portsmouth, Southampton and the Isle of Wight and relates to best practice being developed nationally in RE. RE at Stoke Park Infant School provides opportunities to promote children’s spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) development.
In the Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 we study the religions Christianity and Hinduism. The Hampshire Agreed Syllabus is required “to reflect that the religious traditions of Great Britain are in the main Christian whilst taking account of the teaching and practices of the other principal religions represented in Great Britain.” At Key Stage 1 the children are required to study Christianity and one other religion)
We teach units of learning based on concepts such as: thanking, remembering, angels, specialness, celebration, authority (see long term overview for RE at Stoke Park Infant School – themes and concepts). The themes and concepts within the units covered reflect a progression in difficulty and complexity from Year R-2. The children are taught first to attend to their own experience of particular concepts, before enquiring into related religious as well as non-religious ways of living, represented in Great Britain and beyond. Within each unit the children use the skills of Religious Education in Living Difference III, which are the enquiry skills of Communicate, Apply, Enquire, Contextualise and Evaluate. In Foundation Stage (Year R) and Key Stage 1 (Years 1 and 2), greater time is given to the Communicate and Apply steps of the enquiry process where the children are generally still working with ideas that are familiar to them. They think about their own experience of a concept, before exploring their own responses in relation to others’ experience. They then become even more aware of others’ responses and might give examples from their own experience of the concept in different situations.
We have a strong link with one of the local churches, St Mary’s C of E church, Bishopstoke. Reverent Wise and members of the church visit the school each week for ‘Open the Book’ assemblies, teaching about the Bible. Key Stage 1 classes also make visits to the church for example for Christingle and when learning about ‘Special Places’. We also have a variety of other opportunities for first-hand experiences, exploring relevant resources and artefacts, making cross-curricular links and using visits/visitors to enhance and deepen the children’s learning and engagement in RE.
Teaching and learning activities include opportunities for children to express their thoughts, feelings and responses through, for example: art, role-play/drama, music, dance, writing, use of food or cooking, use of computing.
Children take part in Collective Worship times as part of our school and class assemblies.
We use the Living Difference III Agreed Syllabus age-related expectations to assess and monitor children’s learning across each year group and to ensure that progress is made. Evidence of children’s learning and progress is captured in a variety of ways, for example through speaking and listening, drama, dialogue and discussion, as well as through different written activities.
“RE subject matter gives particular opportunities to promote an ethos of respect for others, challenge stereotypes and build understanding of other cultures and beliefs. This contributes to promoting a positive and inclusive school ethos and champions democratic values and human rights.” (DCSF)