Religious Education at Riverside
The law provides a basic curriculum for schools, which includes religious education and the national curriculum subjects. Religious education, unlike the subjects of the national curriculum, is determined at a local level. North Tyneside (Local Authority) has a statutory duty to set up a ‘Standing Advisory Council for Religious Education’ (SACRE) whose duties include the provision and monitoring of religious education and collective worship. As part of its responsibilities towards religious education, the SACRE establishes a syllabus which is reviewed every five years. The North Tyneside Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education is a revision of the one produced in 2006. This syllabus is the legal basis for Religious Education for schools in North Tyneside. Religious Education at Riverside Primary School ensures that during their school life pupils encounter all of the principal religions represented in thUnited Kingdom:
At Riverside Primary we support our pupils so that they learn to become critical thinkers and have an open mind regarding diversity in world religions. Pupils can debate religious and non-religious beliefs and are forming their own belief systems. At Riverside we believe in nurturing our children’s thought processes by empowering them to reflect on their own personal beliefs and sharing and discussing their thoughts and experiences in a non-judgemental way.
Children are exposed to a range of religions to enable them to understand and celebrate the beliefs of others as well as their own. They understand the felling of belonging to a community and how this can empower them.
At Riverside primary we promote pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) development and prepare pupils for adult life. Our curriculum as a whole is directed to include these elements but it is especially apparent in our Religious Education, which has a vital role to play in providing opportunities for SMSC development.
The Early Years Foundation Stage describes the phase of a child’s education from birth to the end of the Reception year at the age of five. Religious Education (RE) becomes compulsory when children enter Reception. Children in Reception must follow planning which meets Agreed Syllabus requirements. It is also highly recommended that Nursery children are exposed to the teachings of RE and therefore this is why at Riverside Primary we include it in both Nursery and Reception. Sufficient time must be given to ensure that children receive their entitlement to RE when in Reception.
During the Early Years Foundation Stage, children begin to explore the world of religion in terms of special people, books, times, places and objects and by visiting places of worship. They listen to and talk about stories. They are introduced to religious words and concepts and use their senses in exploring religions and beliefs, practices and forms of expression. They are encouraged to ask questions and reflect on their own feelings and experiences. They begin to use their imagination and curiosity to develop their appreciation and wonder of the world in which they live.
Most Key Stage 1 pupils have a natural curiosity. They ask questions and wonder about life; they show a willingness to use their imagination and they have an intuitive sense of mystery in the world around them. Pupils will be introduced to some of the beliefs and features of a religion and begin to use basic subject specific vocabulary.
In relation to their learning about these religious beliefs and practices, pupils will be given the opportunity to raise questions and express their views simply.
Pupils will also be given opportunities to reflect on their own ideas and feelings in relation to their learning.
Pupils will take part in enquiries, finding out about religious and non-religious beliefs and practices by encountering a variety of sources.
Pupils must be taught about:
• Christianity - introduction to beliefs and practices and their impact
• Buddhism – introduction to some beliefs and practices and their impact
• Religious diversity - introduction to the diverse religious and non-religious landscape in the local area
Most Key Stage 2 pupils are becoming more aware of themselves and others and the wider world in which they live. They are encouraged to be curious and ask increasingly challenging questions about religion, belief, values and human life. Key Stage 2 pupils will build on their learning from Key Stage 1 as they develop a capacity to extend and deepen their factual knowledge of religious beliefs and practices and begin to recognise local, national and global contexts. They will extend their range of specific subject vocabulary.
In relation to the religious material studied, pupils develop the capacity to form their own reasoned opinions, identifying relevant information and using examples to back up their ideas. They develop the capacity to listen to differing points of view and see the world through the eyes of others.
Pupils will be given opportunities to reflect on their own feelings, experiences, ideas, beliefs and values in reference to the religious material studied.
Pupils can develop ability to investigate and enquire independently, using a variety of sources.
Pupils must be taught about:
• Christianity – beliefs and practices across the denominations and the impact of these for individuals and communities
• Hinduism – some beliefs and practices and the impact of these for individuals and communities
• Judaism – some beliefs and practices and the impact of these for individuals and communities
• religious diversity - the diverse religious and non-religious landscape across the region, including a special study of a local Muslim community
• similarities and differences within and between religious and non-religious worldviews through at least one thematic study e.g. about ritual, the environment, care for others.
Unfortunately not the ones with chocolate chips.
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