Infant School RE Curriculum
At Prestbury St Mary’s, we follow the principal aim of the Gloucestershire Agreed Syllabus. This is ‘to explore what people believe and what difference this makes to how they live, so that pupils can gain the knowledge, understanding, determination and skills needed to handle questions raised by religion and belief, reflecting on their own ideas and ways of living’.
We highlight the importance of Religious Education as Prestbury Learners and identify the benefits this has for the creation of an open, articulate and respectful society. We aim to ensure our teaching provokes questions about meaning and purpose in life, beliefs about God and issues of right and wrong.
Our curriculum carefully builds upon existing knowledge; beginning in the EYFS and developing each year. This provides challenge, reflection and independent questioning to maximise pupils’ developing religious reasoning. From the early years and throughout the learning journey of the Federation, we aspire for all pupils to be equipped with carefully sequenced knowledge and understanding of a range of religions and beliefs. All pupils, regardless of their ability, are challenged to express their own personal reflections and understanding, enabling them to develop their own ideas, values and identities. We are committed to ensuring that through careful planning, SEND pupils are able to achieve excellence alongside their peers. We aim to prepare all pupils to be able to participate positively as British citizens in our society, with its diverse religions and beliefs.
Religious Education is a highly valued subject at Prestbury St. Mary’s Federation. The Gloucestershire Agreed Syllabus has three core elements, which are woven together to provide breadth and balance within teaching and learning about religions and beliefs.
The three elements are:
· Making Sense of Beliefs
· Making Connections
· Understanding the Impact
The aims of our curriculum are:
· To make sense of a range of religious and non-religious beliefs
· To understand the impact and significance of religious and non-religious beliefs
· To make connections between religious and non-religious beliefs, concepts, practices and ideas studied.
RE is taught weekly across the school in units; for 50 minutes in EYFS and 1 hour in Key Stage 1. These are the units taught in each year group:
· EYFS – Christianity and other faiths within their community, as a part of their growing sense of self.
· Year 1 – Christianity, Judaism
· Year 2 – Christianity, Islam
As Prestbury Learners, our pupils benefit from experiential learning through class visits and expert visitors. For each unit we explore ‘key vocabulary’ and definitions, enhancing the children’s religious literacy. The children discover, explore and consider different answers to questions and learn to mindfully consider the value of differences. We highlight the need for our pupils to use their developing oracy skills to express themselves and to agree or disagree respectfully. Our pupils learn about the impact and significance of religious and non-religious beliefs within their own community.
The Gloucestershire Agreed Syllabus for RE sets out experiences, opportunities and appropriate topics for children in the FS. Our early years pupils will encounter religious and non-religious worldviews through special people, books, times, places and objects and by visiting places of worship. They will listen and talk about religious stories and be introduced to new vocabulary. Our young learners will use all of their senses to explore their beliefs, express themselves and ask questions. They will reflect on their own feelings and experiences and use their imagination and curiosity to develop an appreciation of the world we live in. The Gloucestershire Agreed Syllabus provides us with 6 key questions for our EYFS pupils, of which we must teach at least 4:
1:Why is the word God so important to Christians?
2: Why is Christmas special for Christians?
3: Why is Easter special for Christians?
4: Being special: where do we belong?
5: Which places are special and why?
6: Which stories are special and why?
Key Stage 1
In years 1 and 2, key questions drive each termly unit, enabling pupils to be taught the knowledge, skills and understanding about Christians, Muslims and Jews.
Year group Term 1 Term 2 Term 3 Term 4 Term 5 Term 6
1 What does it mean to belong to a faith community? What do Christians believe God is like? Who is Jewish and how do they live? Who do Christians say made the world? How should we care for others and for the world?
2 Who is Muslim and how do they live? Why does Christmas matter to Christians? Who is Muslim and how do they live? Why does Easter matter to Christians? What is the ‘good news’ Christians believe Jesus brings? What makes some places sacred to believers?
The impact of our RE curriculum will be measured through pupil voice, book looks, learning walks, vocabulary rich displays and end of unit ‘quiz’ assessments. A record of children’s work and thoughts are collected in floor books and some work will be recorded in pupils’ topic books. If pupils are able to demonstrate their learning at the end of a unit of work they are deemed to
be making good or better progress. The subject leader regularly monitors planning and teaching. She speaks to pupils about their learning and enjoyment of RE. Pupil voice demonstrates that pupils can talk about what they have learnt using some subject specific vocabulary and enables them to recall their learning over time.
By the end of Key Stage 1, our Prestbury Learners should be able to:
· Identify the core beliefs and concepts studied and give descriptions of what they mean.
· Give examples of how stories show what people believe.
· Give clear, simple accounts of what stories mean to believers.
· Give examples of how people use stories, texts and teachings to guide their beliefs and actions.
· Think, talk and ask questions about whether the ideas they have been studying have something to say to them.