Our R.E. curriculum is designed to ensure that all pupils leave St Gabriel’s CofE Academy with a clear and thorough understanding of the main teachings of Christianity as well as a good understanding of the world’s other major religions and the diversity within them. Our curriculum aims to establish an environment for encountering and enquiring about philosophical concepts, moral dilemmas and a range of worldviews, including the views of non-theists. Through our curriculum, we want to ensure the beliefs of children from all faiths or no faith are valued, respected and shared as a community of learners and provide an opportunity for personal growth in each child’s individual experience of the world. As a Church of England school, we recognise the importance of promoting values which reflect those of Christianity. Alongside this, our teaching of R.E. is also centred on the promotion of key skills to support our children to be critical thinkers who are inquisitive about the beliefs of others and of themselves.
R.E. is taught discretely across a series of weekly one hour lessons and covers objectives set out in the local syllabus produced by Coventry and Warwickshire Local Authorities (SACRE).
Our curriculum objectives are taken from SACRE and supported by Understanding Christianity. Understanding Christianity is a scheme of learning, which is used to teach children about Christianity. For our systematic and thematic units, including world religions, we use teaching ideas provided by SACRE.
Understanding Christianity lessons are primarily focused on the theology behind Christianity and children are encouraged to explore, question and challenge these ideas as well as delving deeper into the meanings behind extracts from the Bible. During the course of a learning unit, lessons follow a structure in which children begin to make sense of a biblical text, understand the impact of a text and make connections to the world and their own experiences.
The SACRE units enable children to engage with religious and non-religious worldviews and beliefs. Lessons provide opportunities for pupils to explore where beliefs come from, how they might have changed over time and how they are applied in different contexts. As well as developing core knowledge, children are explicitly taught progression learning skills (ask, recall, explain, opinion, connect, compare, evaluate), which supports their critical thinking across all of our curriculum areas. Teachers encourage children to approach topics with curiosity and an enquiring mind. They learn to question, challenge and evaluate ideas in order to explore questions of morality and ethics, as well as the nature of reality, knowledge and existence. Each learning unit within our R.E. curriculum also provides opportunities for children to engage and learn about how different people live.
Children learn about R.E. from a range of sources including studying: holy books, artefacts, artwork, audio and visual resources as well as books and magazines.
Assessment for learning strategies are employed to enable teachers to identify the strength of understanding of the children. Teachers will use this information to make adaptations to their planning to meet the needs of the children. Teachers may also change the focus of learning during a lesson to ensure children are supported and challenged. Each term, teachers will use evidence of learning in children’s books and their responses in ‘roll-over’ quizzes to ascertain children’s progress within and across units of work. Verbal feedback and written feedback is used to support children in understanding more about R.E. School leaders monitor pupil’s books termly and hold individual termly meetings with all teachers to ensure they are supported to provide a high-quality RE curriculum. In addition, children’s views and understanding are ascertained through pupil interviews/surveys.