How we teach Religious Education
Religious Education at St Margaret's lies at the very heart of our curriculum.
Our mission is to develop the academic attainment of each individual child to their fullest potential - providing 'A Place to Become' - ensuring the social and emotional well-being of every child, giving opportunities for the development of initiative, self-confidence and self-discipline and setting moral standards within the context of the Anglican (Church of England) faith. Our ethos statement emphasises the distinctively Christian values of Faith, Hope and Love. developing knowledge and skills across the curriculum and life skills which equip children well for the next stage of their education and in their personal development.
St Margaret's Church of England Voluntary Aided Primary School follows the syllabus for Religious Education produced by the Diocese of Blackburn (BDBE). This syllabus provides a scheme of work for Religious Education in Church primary schools. It takes into account the fact that some schools, like ours, have a large percentage of children who are of other faiths: we aim to develop the children's knowledge and understanding of the major world faiths and address the fundamental questions in life, for example, the meaning of life and the existence of a divine spirit. Parents who send thier children to our school know that it is a church school and expect us to be faithful to its foundation, whilst respecting other faiths. We help the children to learn from religions as well as about religions. At St Margaret's we know how relationships with members of the local communities and local faith communities can enrich pupils' experiences in RE and we strive to cultivate and maintain these relationships.
"Listen to advice and accept instruction, and in the end you will be wise." (Proverbs 19:20)
|Jan 2021 Religious Education Policy||[pdf 524KB]|
Collective Worship makes an essential contribution to our mission statement 'A Place to BECOME - a learning community sharing God's Faith, Hope and Love' and the aims and ethos of the school and therefore to the Christian Education we provide.
In our aim to provide 'A Place to BECOME' for each child, a place where children can BECOME the person they were meant to be - worship is inclusive and invitational, providing opportunities, without compulsion, to all pupils and adults to grow spiritually through prayer, stillness, worship and reflection. At the same time, worship allows the freedom for those of other faiths and none to be present with integrity.
Fortnighly themes of worship are led by a variety of staff, including the Parish Priest, and include whole school Eucharist services, key stage worship led by the head/deputy head and class worship led by the class teachers. On a regular basis worship, involves all children in the school reflecting on the worship theme and involving them in a creative prayer activity which is then displayed in the prayer corner. We have been working on worship becoming increasingly led by the older children. Collective acts of worship are Christian in character. and include regular reference to the scriptures. However, knowledge and respect of other faiths is an essental part of both collective worship and the Religious Education Curriculum at St Margaret's. There are weekly celebration assemblies which are separate to the daily acts of worship.
Prayer is promoted as a natural and valuable part of the culture of the school.
There are regular opportunities to pray and reflect for all who wish to do so - providing a range of creative prayer oppotunities is something which is prioritised at St Margaret's. Class reflection areas and the whole school prayer corner are linked to the worship themes as appropriate with all children being invited to visit the whole school prayer corner. Children are encouraged to explore ideas about prayer as well as practising the habit of prayer to God. Different forms of prayer, including those to express acknowledgement of faillures and wrong doings, confession, forgiveness and reconciliation as well as thanksgiving, praise and petition.
"Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you." (Peter 1:5-7)
Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural Development
"Stand still and consider the wondrous works of God." (Job 37:14)
The Department for Education (DfE) says that every state-funded school must offer a curriculum that is balanced and broadly based, and which:
- Promotes the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils at the school and of society
- Prepares pupils at the school for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life
Fundamental British Values
"Be tolerant with one another and forgive one another" (Colossians 3:13)
The Department for Education's (DfE's) non-statutory guidance on promoting British values in schools outlines the understanding and knowledge expected of pupils as a result of schools meeting the standard to respect ‘fundamental British values’.
At St Margaret's both British values and developing children's spirtual, moral, social and cultural development are embedded throughout a broad and balanced curriculum, as well as through the school’s ethos and vision - they are not simply 'taught' but lived through the school's ethos and values. These values are promoted through both core and foundation subjects, collective worship as well as outside of lessons, for example through enrichment visits, the school council, the school's behaviour policy.
Furthermore, each week children engage in a 'Newsday Tuesday' assembly: exposing children to current affairs, discover their interests and bring the world closer to their everyday lives. Each week, a big, open question is provided - the questions encourage children to discuss, debate and form opinions. This allows school opportunities to teach children respect, tolerance and to celebrate differences. The slideshow of pictures shows a recording of some of children's responses from the weekly sessions.
The following documents provide an overview of themes looked at so far during the academic year of 2021/22: Picture News Autumn 2021, Picture News Autumn 2021 (second half), Picture News Spring 2022 (first half) Picture News Spring 2022 (second half), Picture News Summer 2022 (first half), Picture News Summer 2022 (first half)
"All things are possible" (Luke 18:27)