At the Kennet Federation we aim to deliver an RE curriculum which is accessible to all, and that will maximize the outcomes for every child. We aim to promote pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development and to prepare them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of life. Through our teaching of RE we aim to develop tolerance and respect for the different cultures and beliefs within our society. Finally, we aim to promote pupils’ self-esteem and emotional well-being, which should in turn help them form and maintain worthwhile and satisfying relationships, based on respect for themselves and others.
For SEND children, we ensure quality first teaching, whilst setting achievable targets, with the necessary scaffolding. Discursive learning is at the core of RE, which caters for all learning needs. We always value engagement, effort and enthusiasm as we encourage children to feel proud of their work and their thinking.
Our whole curriculum aims to enable children, regardless of background, ability or additional needs to flourish and become the best version of themselves that they can be.
We have two strands to our implementation of RE at the Kennet Federation: Discovery RE and RE Inspired (at Southcote only). Discovery RE is a national scheme that we use weekly and breaks down our teaching of RE into a clear and progressive sequence. RE Inspired is a local Southcote initiative where every year group visits the local St Matthew’s Church for an interactive session led by the vicar and his team of volunteers. The RE Inspired sessions are broadly Christian but we ensure that pupils meet all the six major world religions within the Discovery RE lessons.
In Discovery RE there are 6 units for each year group spread over 6 terms. Every unit is based around a Key Question that demands an answer that weighs up ‘evidence’ (subject knowledge) and reaches a conclusion based on this. This necessitates children using their subject knowledge and applying it to the enquiry question, rather than this knowledge being an end in itself.
Discovery RE advocates answering the Key Question with a 4-step approach:
- Engagement: The starting point for every unit connects the key question to pupils’ own experiences in the world.
- Investigation: This encompasses learning the subject knowledge to support answering the key question.
- Evaluation: The children need to use their knowledge to answer the enquiry question.
- Expression: Finally, children must reflect on their initial starting point, analysing how the enquiry affects their starting point.
Through these 4-steps, children can then focus on developing critical thinking skills, on personal reflection into the child’s own thoughts and feelings, on growing subject knowledge and nurturing spiritual development.
As soon as the children start in EYFS they will begin to understand and use topic vocabulary appropriate to their age and stage of development such as belief, respect, values, faith, expression, diversity, belonging and tolerance. Pupils also have access to a range of resources for a variety of different religions. We encourage a hands-on approach so that children are able to see how artefacts are used in different religions and how they are supported to understand their value.
We believe we are offering an RE curriculum that meets the needs of our pupils. RE plays a vital part of primary education. The spiral curriculum expects that the format of the lessons will be mainly discussion led with time to reflect and consolidate. Children will be encouraged to be open minded and listen to other views and ideas.
At the end of each year, pupils have developed their reflective skills, and have gained a new understanding of beliefs and religions in the world around them.
- Pupils should be able to talk enthusiastically about their knowledge of religions and articulate well about the need to be respectful of different beliefs.
- Pupils know how people of different religions may express themselves and treat others equally regardless of background or beliefs.
- Pupils use acquired vocabulary in lessons. They develop an understanding of the need to be respectful and tolerant of different beliefs.
- Pupils will have had range of opportunities to develop knowledge of religious topics in practical and creative ways.