At Easterside Academy, we recognise the important role that Religious Education plays in the personal development of our pupils. Whilst it has particular contribution to their spiritual development, it also promotes the moral, social and cultural development of children.
We follow the Middlesbrough Agreed Syllabus, which principally aims: ‘To engage pupils in systematic enquiry into significant human questions which religions and worldviews address, so that they can develop the understanding and skills needed to appreciate and appraise varied responses to these questions, as well as developing responses of their own’. In addition to this, the teaching of Religious Education will help to:
- provide learners with knowledge and understanding of Christianity and other principal religious traditions and beliefs represented in Great Britain.
- develop their understanding of the ways in which beliefs influence people in their behaviour, practices and outlook.
- enable learners to apply the insights of the principal religious traditions to their own search for identity and significance.
- enable learners to become aware of their own beliefs and values and to have a positive attitude to the search for meaning and purpose in life.
- encourage learners to develop a positive attitude towards other people who hold religious beliefs different from their own.
Our RE curriculum falls into three strands:
Through our weekly RE lessons our ultimate aim is to enable our pupils to be equipped to face the demands of the contemporary world and prepare pupils for life in modern Britain. The RE curriculum is presented to the children through reflective questions that encourage them to discover, explore and connect their ideas and those of others. It is also vital that religious education encourages pupils to develop positive attitudes to their learning and to the beliefs and values of others. The following four attitudes are essential and will be developed through our RE curriculum:
- respect for all
- appreciation and wonder
Our Nursery children do not follow a statutory RE curriculum, but are provided with opportunities to: explore the world we live in; ask questions; experience special events and express feelings. All of which are important skills in their emotional and spiritual development.
In Reception, our pupils will focus predominantly on Christianity with some aspects of other world religions explored in less detail.
In KS1, the children will extend their knowledge about Christianity and be introduced to Judaism and some aspects of Islam in preparation for a study in KS2. Opportunities are given to compare and contrast the religions and other worldviews. In KS2, the pupils with build further knowledge about Christianity and will study the religious beliefs of Judaism, Hinduism and Islam. The curriculum also provides the children to encounter non– religious beliefs / worldviews such as Humanism.
The RE curriculum is brought alive through memorable visits to different places of worship; having visitors into school to speak and by celebrating different religious events. The academy also provides ‘Prayer Spaces’ at different times of the year, to enable children and young people, of all faiths and none, to explore life questions, spirituality and faith in a safe, creative and interactive way. Taking a broadly Christian perspective as a starting point, prayer spaces give children and young people an opportunity to develop skills of personal reflection and to explore prayer in an open, inclusive and safe environment. The approach does not proselytise and purposely allows pupils to make their own meaning and to draw their own conclusions. Assemblies are also planned weekly to support both the RE and PSHE curriculums.
RE in Early Years