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Religious Education (RE)

RE

 

The aim of Religious Education (RE) is to foster in pupils a reflective approach to life and enable and enrich this process through their study of living faiths. Through this approach we aim to help children develop understanding, empathy and respect the right of people to hold and practise beliefs different from their own.

  • Religious Education aims to develop the children’s skills, concepts and attitudes identified in the Agreed Hampshire Syllabus.
  • Religious Education seeks to promote reflection, empathy, comprehension, investigation, interpretation and analysis. RE also aims to foster attitudes such as curiosity, open-mindedness, self understanding, respect, wonder and appreciation, as these are fundamental to a fair minded study of religions and spiritual dimensions of human life.
  • Religious Education encourages and allows pupils to think critically about religion and ethics.

 

Living Difference 

Living Difference III offers an educative approach to religious education emphasising a process of enquiry into concepts.  This enquiry approach follows very similar steps to the way in which we deliver a range of other curriculum areas at Great Binfields and these areas very often interweave. Children have the opportunity to respond from their own experience before being introduced to the way others appreciate things. Living Difference III gives young people the opportunity to evaluate; that is to make a judgement about why something is important for someone else as well as to discern what may be important for themselves.

 

The process of enquiry has five steps: CommunicateApplyEnquireContextualise and Evaluate. Each enquiry begins with the teacher inviting the children into the enquiry by communicating the concept; bringing the child or young person to attend first to their own experience of the concept through an activity, before at Apply exploring their own responses in relation to others’ experience. At Enquire, material that is new to the children and young people is introduced in varying complexity, children may also reflect collaboratively, for example in a community of philosophical enquiry, recognising that there are many different ways of looking at things. At the Evaluate step children and young people are asked to weigh up their experience of the concept in two ways. First from the viewpoint of someone living a religious (or non-religious) life, as in the context studied. Secondly, the children and young people come to discern what may be of value from their own point of view. 

 

Some of the concepts we explore in school include: Interpretation, remembering, belonging, thankfulness, devotion and temptation. These concepts are chosen for year groups based on religious events and celebrations in the year, however they are also chosen taking into consideration the needs of our children. For example, Year Two explore the concept of 'remembering' at the end of the year, as the embark on their journey from KS1 into KS2. Year Six explore the concept of 'war' at the start of the year having covered their WW2 topic. Year Four explore the concept of' 'temptation' whilst making links to PSHE of making choices when being inclusive in our school environment. 

 

 

Open The Book

 

Open the Book is a RE project which offers our EYFS and KS1 children an opportunity to hear the major stories of the Bible, from a team of Christians from our local Church, Christchurch, in Chineham. They present the stories using drama, role-play and story telling techniques and the children are invited to discuss, sing and act as part of the narrative. This programme is not part of our Collective Worship programme but an integral part of our Children's RE entitlement.  Each presentation takes 15 minutes and incorporates Christian values. It is planned as a three-year rolling programme so by the end of Year 2 our children have a good grasp of the overview of the Christian Bible -  120 stories with a timeline  from the Creation to Ascension. Each story comes with a scripted introduction, conclusion and time for reflection/evaluation. Many of the stories come from The Lion Storyteller Bible, by Bob Hartman, and others have been specifically written for Open the Book.

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Legal Requirement

The Education Act 1996, School Standards and Framework Act 1998 and Education Act 2002 require that:

  • Religious education should be taught to all children and young people other than those in nursery classes and except for those withdrawn at the wish of their parents. Teachers’ rights are safeguarded, should they wish to withdraw from the teaching of religious education.
  • Religious education in all community, foundation and voluntary controlled schools should be taught in accordance with an Agreed Syllabus.
  • An Agreed Syllabus should reflect the fact that the religious traditions in Great Britain are in the main Christian, while taking account of the teachings and practices of the other principal religions in Great Britain.
  • An Agreed Syllabus must not be designed to convert pupils, or to urge a particular religion or religious belief on pupils.
  • An Agreed Syllabus Conference must be convened every five years to review the existing syllabus.

Local Authority Agreed Syllabus

In accordance with the Education Act (2006), the teaching of Religious Education at Great Binfields Primary School follows the Local Authority Agreed Syllabus ‘Living Difference III’ 

Parental right of withdrawal

In accordance with the Education Act 1996, School Standards and Framework Act 1998 and Education Act 2002, parents should have the right to withdraw their children from the teaching of Religious Education, without influence from the school, although the school will ensure parents or carers are informed of this right and are aware of the educational objectives and content of the Religious Education syllabus. In this way, parents can make an informed decision. Where parents have requested that their child is withdrawn, their right must be respected, and where Religious Education is integrated in the curriculum, the school will discuss the arrangements with the parents or carers to explore how the child’s withdrawal can be best accommodated. In order to avoid misunderstandings, any parent wishing to withdraw their child may arrange a meeting with the Head Teacher in order to discuss:

  • The religious issues about which the parent would object to his/her child being taught.
  • The practical implications of withdrawal e.g. supervision and alternative activities.
  • The circumstances in which the school can reasonably be expected to accommodate parental wishes.
  • Any advance notice required of such Religious Education.

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