Our Curriculum Threads
Our curriculum threads are woven through our RE curriculum as it:
Gives our children a space in which to develop their LITERACY AND ORACY skills through rich discussions and debates which are centred around our half termly ‘Big Questions’ and which allow children to share their thoughts and voice their opinions in a sensitive manner as they explore various world religions, cultures and belief systems.
Opens the door to WISDOM AND WONDER as children are exposed to and explore cultures, beliefs and practices that are different to their own, and to which they otherwise may not have the opportunity to engage with. As well as allowing our children to marvel at and take part in some of the practices of the diverse festivals and celebrations which are embedded in these religions.
Encourages DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION with our children exploring and celebrating six key religions: Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism, Judaism and Buddhism. These religions are explored in a safe and sensitive environment which encourages children to learn about and celebrate the differences in our multiculturally diverse modern day British society . We actively engage in the discovery and discussion of different religious beliefs, cultures and practices and therefore actively become a multicultural and not monocultural school.
Allows our children to be HAPPY AND HEALTHY as there is a safe space built within our curriculum where children’s own religions can be celebrated and valued, never criticised, judged or condemned. We allow our children to feel valued for who they are, what they believe in and what they stand for.
Here at Winkfield St Mary's CE Primary School with our RE curriculum we want to develop in our children the characteristics needed to be a spiritual learner. The children are encouraged to engage with a range of Big Questions about the meaning and significance of life, religion and beliefs. We want the children to have the ability to ask significant and highly reflective questions about religion and demonstrate an excellent understanding of issues related to the nature, truth and value of religion. We aim to encourage the children to consider the beliefs, teachings, practices and ways of life central to religion and belief. We also want them to recognise diversity, learning about similarities and differences both within and between religions and beliefs, and the importance of dialogue between them. We also want to encourage in our children the ability to link the study of religion and belief to their own personal reflections on meaning and purpose. In order that we may “live life to the full”. (John 10 v10)
In RE, we use ‘Discovery RE’ as our teaching scheme. It is used to ensure that RE is taught progressively, with knowledge and skills built across and within year groups. In addition to this, the RE curriculum is mapped out to ensure that links between prior learning and different religions are explicit and that knowledge and skills are both revised and built upon from Reception to Year 6. We also include our REACH (Respect Excellence Awareness Courage Honesty) values within in our RE teaching to further cement the relationship between religion and our daily school life.
RE lessons are taught weekly in each year group (approximately 1 hour per week in KS1 and approximately 1.25 hours per week in KS2); ensuring we meet the statutory requirements as outlined in the Pan-Berkshire Syllabus (36 hours a year in KS1 and 45 hours a year in KS2).
In addition to RE lessons in class, RE learning is enriched through our whole school celebrations such as Harvest Festival, our Christmas Nativity Service and Easter Service. On these occasions we visit the local church which gives children the opportunity to deepen their knowledge and understanding of one of the religions they have studied while presenting their learning in a variety of contexts.
There are also regular assemblies timetabled into the calendar where our local Church Warden or our local vicar come and lead our children in worship, further strengthening our ties to our church as well as helping to see Christianity in action. There are also termly year group assemblies where children showcase their learning to their parents and to one other class in the school. Frequently their RE learning for the term is included in this assembly.
In determining the impact of the RE curriculum, we are essentially asking the question, ‘How well have pupils developed the essential characteristics of a spiritual learner? We determine this by regular monitoring, assessing and by taking feedback from pupils, staff, parents and governors.
Monitoring of the teaching and learning of RE across the school takes place on a regular basis through learning walks, book looks and pupil conferencing.
Assessment at Winkfield St Mary’s School is carried out slightly differently in Reception to how it is done in Years 1 – 6. We assess YR pupils using the EYFS Framework .In YR, pupils are assessed using on-going observation and questioning from staff and these are recorded and uploaded onto Insight. Evidence is used to build up a picture of the child’s achievements and level of independence over time and summative assessments are made each term. At the end of YR, a determination is made as to whether the child has met or exceeded the Early Learning Goal.
For Years 1-6, summative assessment takes place of the children at the end of each unit. Children have the opportunity to self-assess as well as staff making their own judgements. These are recorded and uploaded on to our school tracker, Insight. The assessments of pupils against their indicators and their progress is measured and tracked over time. This supports teachers in identifying areas of strength and areas that may need additional support during the next teaching unit. We maintain the highest expectations of the children as well as of the teachers so that RE remains an integral subject within the WSM curriculiumn.