The purpose of Religious Education is to support the development of children’s own values and contribute to their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. It gives the children an opportunity to interpret and respond to a variety of concepts, beliefs and practices within religions and to their own and others cultural and life experiences. This takes the form of encountering religious stories, festivals, artefacts, places of worship, rituals and beliefs.
At Heatherside Infants our children know that we are a school Family and as a family we look after and respect each other. Our school family has a large range of different cultures and faiths that provides a rich opportunity for us to share and celebrate these with each other.
We seek to nurture in our children to respect the beliefs and opinions of others in our own school family as well as in the wider community and in turn this supports and nurtures their understanding of our British Values.
Heatherside Infant School follows the agreed syllabus for Hampshire called ‘The Living Difference IV’
Living Difference IV, is the Agreed Syllabus for Hampshire schools and is the legal document to be followed for the teaching of religious education.
At Heatherside Infant School our RE lessons strive to promote rich discussions drawing on skills learnt through our Philosophy for Children programme, promoting a high level of questioning and reflection. This enables children to gain an understanding of different beliefs, and it encourages the children to become respectful of others religious beliefs as well as encouraging them to develop their own beliefs, values and attitudes. We enable children to learn in an environment where they can develop their understanding and ask questions in a way that is respectful to others.
The Living Difference syllabus is delivered through concepts and takes an enquiry based approach using concepts as a starting point. There are four Golden thread Concepts –Community, Belonging, Love and Special and these must be studied at least once in Key Stage 1 , with one a requirement that at least one golden thread concept is introduced in Year R . This approach allows us to build on the principles of Philosophy for Children which we use widely in our curriculum provision. Children are supported to explore concepts that are meaningful to them such as thankfulness, special, before considering the view point of other religions.
The children in Years R, 1 & 2 explore the beliefs and traditions of Christians which is part of the Abrahamic tradition and then the beliefs of Hindus who are part of the Dharmic Tradition. Lessons are taught in a block each half term with a concept as a focus. During these units of work, the pupils take part in class/group discussions, drama activities, watch video clips, go on visits and/or have visitors to the school. Part of the ‘Living Difference IV‘ syllabus is to have pondering time where the class may pursue questions or themes of their choice this may occupy up to 20% of the total curriculum time if wanted.
Evidence of progress in religious education
- Evidence of children and young people’s progress will be captured in a number of ways, for example through speaking and listening, drama, dialogue and discussion, as well as through a variety of different written activities.
- The age-related expectations are intended to act as a guide to the assessment of children and young people's progress in religious education, whilst recognising that schools are free to develop their own assessment programmes.
- When planning with Living Difference IV for a particular group of children or young people, the Living Difference IV age-related expectations will be used to ensure that there is progress over time.
We believe that the skills taught in RE can be transferred into other areas of their learning. The children build upon and develop these skills as they become more confident in exploring the RE concepts.
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