Our primary school curriculum works with the Wakefield agreed syllabus, and it aims to challenge children to learn about a range of religions and non-religious worldviews whilst also considering the big questions of life. The curriculum is planned by teachers who have expert knowledge of the subjects that they teach. At our school we want to ensure that our children go out into the world with the knowledge and skills to understand the beliefs of others and live in today’s diverse and ever changing world. Our curriculum plans aim to give our children the opportunities to learn about religion and non-religious worldviews in a variety of ways for example: through art, music and drama as well as through discussion and more formal writing opportunities.
The school uses a range of strategies to allow children to think and consider the big questions that the RE curriculum brings. We aim to ensure that all thinking and reflection time is purposeful and leads to deeper learning. To ensure that this happens, we are mindful of thinking and reflection when planning units of work that consider big questions. Approaches such as, Reflective Storytelling, learning about and from other religions and non-religions, discussions, being inspired by influential people and Philosophy for Children enable teachers to carefully form questions that will encourage deep thinking and active response.
Our RE curriculum is a large part of what we do as a school and the children love the way it opens up lines of enquiry and enables them to have deep discussions. Our children truly love RE and are always excited to find out about the lives and beliefs of others. Low stakes assessment of knowledge and skills are built into each topic of study in the curriculum. This is recorded on an assessment sheet where you can clearly see what the children have understood. Feedback from the most recent pupil voice survey indicates that the curriculum intent is successful. Pupils said that they enjoyed learning ‘lots of new facts’ in RE and ‘getting involved in discussions’. They feel that they make good progress in RE and that this is evident through teacher feedback, improved test score and ‘being able to take part in a discussion and know what you’re talking about’. Pupils feel that they have an opportunity to speak and express an opinion without fear of ridicule or any sense of embarrassment.
Upper foundation have enjoyed learning about Chinese New Year celebrations. They talked about similarities and differences between their own Christmas and new year celebrations and Chinese New Year celebrations. They made Chinese lanterns and dragons and had a go at creating a dragon parade.
We have been learning about a special Hindu festival called Diwali. We have looked in non fiction books to find out about how the festival is celebrated. We have enjoyed making Diva lamps, Mendhi patterns, Rangoli patterns and retelling the story of Rama and Sita with the Diwali small world figures.
In KS1, we’ve been learning about Judaism and how the Torah is treated. We learned how precious the holy book is, so we decided to make our own filled with rules on how to make the world a better place.