St Anselm’s is a Catholic School and we are committed to the Catholic faith, valuing every individual as special and unique, made in the image and likeness of God. We recognise Religious Education is a core curriculum subject and as such is a taught as a subject in its own right. However, the Gospel Values and teachings of the Catholic Church are a fundamental part of everything that we do and these are taught across all areas of the school curriculum.
Religious Education at St Anselm’s respects and promotes each child’s innate capacity for wonder, awe, reverence and spirituality. Our Religious Education curriculum leads our children to aspire not to have more, but to be more – particularly by learning about the lives and actions of the saints and other inspirational figures. Children are taught about God’s love; they learn about their Christian responsibilities; they are provided with experiences of church, Catholic and Christian traditions, as well as being taught to be respectful and understanding of people and traditions from other faith backgrounds. Through Religious Education, our children learn about their unique place within the home, school, parish and global community.
We also aim, wherever possible, to provide pupils with opportunities to develop the personal attributes of our unique Rainbow Curriculum.
Leadership and confidence…
Pupils are encouraged to explore ‘big questions’, scriptural extracts, religious practices and scripturally based art both individually and as part of a team, investigating moral issues and how religious thinking is relevant to their own lives within a variety of contexts, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values. This includes developing conflict management skills, where they do not necessarily agree with the views of others.
Organisation and self-discipline…
Pupils are taught to plan their responses to a theological issue. Organising their thinking and developing an outcome, within different themes (written, art, prayer development, designing a liturgy, video production) at an age and developmentally appropriate level.
Resilience and adaptability…
Pupils are encouraged to explore how people of faith respond to different issues and religious stories. They then relate this to themselves, looking at the relevance to them, and how this can help them in their life journey. Difficult issues are addressed and different approaches to these are explored, developing a sense of resilience in adversity.
Initiative and independence…
Pupils are encouraged to think reflectively and deeply. Through extensive discussion, they investigate their own feelings, interests and worries in a religious context. They then use these reflections to complete a response. Through prayer development, pupils explore their own responses in different ways.
Communication and collaboration…
All RE activities involve deep discussion in a range of different groupings: individually, pairs, small groups, whole class or presenting at whole school assemblies. Pupils develop their abilities to tailor their delivery to their audience, share their thinking and experiment with new delivery styles that are, at times, widening their ‘comfort zones’.
Self-appreciation and mutual respect…
Through learning about people of other faiths and exploring differing views to their own, pupils develop a confidence in their own opinions and, through a greater understanding, develop a respect for the beliefs and practises of others, within their own faith and beyond. They have time and space to explore their own opinions within a religious and moral setting and a ‘safe space’ to discuss their viewpoint.
Kindness and compassion…
As scripture tells us: the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, (Galatians 5:22). Through scripture, we find the guidance of God, who asks us to be kind, to show love for others. This is a quintessential part of our ethos that is lived throughout our school. It is modelled by adults and is reciprocated by the pupils. It is taught throughout the curriculum, in liturgies and is borne across the school.
At St Anselm’s, being a faith school, RE is a core subject. 10% of teaching time is allocated to RE. This is usually two RE lessons, on two separate days. There is then a further ‘feed forward’ session, where the pupils respond to marking; consolidating or extending their understanding.
The basis of our planning is taken from the ‘Come and See’ scheme of work. Subject leaders plan each lesson, in detail, to add the distinctive nature of RE learning in our school. We supplement the scheme with:
The detailed plans are then adapted to meet the specific needs of the children by the class teacher. Each unit of learning begins with an Explore lesson, where pupils relate the concept of the unit to their own lives. This is then followed by a series of Reveal lessons, where children explore and investigate the theme in a religious context. The unit is then concluded with a Respond session, where pupils plan a liturgy in celebration of their learning within the topic.
Across each Key Stage
In consultation with, and with the support of our parish priest, pupils’ faith development is addressed. A sense of respect and reverence is fostered. This is evident in RE lessons and in other prayerful activities. It is modelled by adults in school and mirrored by the pupils.
Lesson by lesson, pupils’ learning is consolidated or extended using a ‘1, 2, 3 marking’ approach. Where a teacher groups work by the pupils’ next steps. The learning is developed by providing each group with a key question, or further teaching to develop their understanding. Pupils are given time to explore this question.
The attainment and progress of each child is tracked using the key skills for each year group, as outlined by the Catholic Education Service. Over the term, skills (as outlined in our RE skills document) are planned for within the broader areas of ‘Knowledge and Understanding’ (learning about), ‘Engagement and Response’ (learning from) and ‘Providing Opportunities for Spiritual Reflection’.
We ensure that pupils:
The high-quality Religious Education curriculum enables pupils to make good and better progress in this subject, as a core subject within the whole school curriculum. It embraces all ‘Rainbow Curriculum’ key skills across each key stage. It enables them to make an essential contribution to the creativity, culture, wealth and well-being of the nation - and indeed the world - both now and in the future.