Religious Education

St. Clement’s is a Church of England Academy with a VA heritage therefore the provision of RE must be in accordance with the Trust Deed of the School. The Governors in consultation with the Head teacher, following advice from the Diocese, have decided to adopt the Birmingham Agreed Syllabus and supplement this with material from the Diocese and elsewhere.

At St Clement’s we reflect the beliefs of the Christian Church and all members of staff work to support the ethos and atmosphere of the school.  Christianity, therefore, forms the core of the RE curriculum. Our school serves families from other faiths.  We therefore, raise pupil’s awareness with a loving and caring attitude to the fundamentals of some of the major world religions.

In doing so we have an opportunity to contribute positively to the development of a society where faith helps individuals to understand one another. Differing cultures have a richness of literature, music etc. that can widen the horizons of all children in school.  As we begin to understand one another’s culture and faith so we break down barriers of intolerance and misunderstanding.

All Christian celebrations are shared in daily worship – Harvest, Advent, Christmas, Epiphany, Lent, Easter and Pentecost.  We celebrate with children of other faiths the commonality of joyous occasions (Diwali, Chinese New Year, Eid ul-Fitr) as appropriate.

Rationale for RE

Religious education provokes challenging questions about the meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human.  Through RE, we aim to develop children’s knowledge and understanding of Christianity as a living faith that influences the lives of people worldwide and as the religion that has most shaped British culture and heritage; to enable pupils to learn about other major world religions and world views, their impact on society, culture and the wider world, facilitating  pupils’ expression of responses and insights through encounter and dialogue; ensure respect those of all/no faiths in their search for God; recognise areas of common belief and practice between different faiths;  enrich and expand their understanding of truth; enrich their own faith through examples of holy living in other traditions. Consideration is also given to other non-religious perspectives.

The distinctive contribution RE makes to the life of the school and other curriculum aims (and community cohesion)

 As a church school we are called to find ways to work towards every pupil having a life enhancing encounter with the Christian faith and with the person of Jesus Christ. In Birmingham Diocese, this means that we will endeavour to ensure that encounters with the Christian faith will be positive for the pupils and that they will hear of the story of Jesus. Such encounters will show to the pupils to the treasures of the Christian faith in a way that invites, but does not coerce.

RE subject matter gives particular opportunities to promote an ethos of respect for others, challenge stereotypes and build understanding of other cultures and beliefs. This contributes to promoting a positive and inclusive school ethos that champions democratic values and human rights.

Personal Development and Well- being

RE offers children opportunities for personal reflection and spiritual development.

It considers the influence of religion on individuals, families, communities and cultures.

In following the Agreed Syllabus for RE we look at the two central attainment targets.

AT1 Learning about Religion

AT2 Learning from Religion

In Learning about Religion children learn about different beliefs and teachings, practices and ways of life and how religions express themselves in different ways.

In Learning from Religion children reflect on and consider important questions of identity and belonging (e.g. who and what matters to me?) questions of meaning (e.g. what do people believe about how life began?) and values and commitments (e.g. who and what do I value?)

Supporting materials

We teach RE through two schemes ( Understanding Christianity and Discovery RE) which both offer an enquiry based approach to Religious Studies. Children think about questions that link faith and the impact on everyday life. The children enjoy questioning and discussion and the chance to share their own experiences and beliefs, whilst respecting those of others.

By addressing key questions, Understanding Christianity encourages pupils to explore core Bible texts, examine the impact for Christians and consider possible implications. It does this through three elements:

  •          Making sense of the text – Developing skills of reading and interpretation; understanding how Christians interpret, handle and use biblical texts; making sense of the meanings of texts for Christians
  •          Understanding the impact – Examining ways in which Christians respond to biblical texts and teachings, and how they put their beliefs into action in diverse ways within the Christian community and in the world
  •          Making connections – Evaluating, reflecting on and connecting the texts and concepts studied, and discerning possible connections between these and pupils’ own lives and ways of understanding the world.

Each unit begins with a ‘way in’ and then offers teaching and learning ideas for each element. The teacher chooses how to weave together the elements, from making sense of the text, through looking at the impact on the world of the Christian, and helping to make connections with the world of the pupil, in order to achieve the outcomes.

Discovery RE® is an enquiry approach to Religious Education that has modules covering Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Sikhism which aim to deliver engaging and challenging RE lessons.

It provides opportunities for children to express their ideas in different ways so they can share their learning about religion in which ever form suits them. It also provides opportunities for children to value their own beliefs whilst respecting those of others around them, thus enabling children to learn from religion which supports the aims and values of the school.

Expectation in RE

The intended outcomes for pupils at the end of their primary education in church schools are that they should be able to:

  •        Talk about ideas about God and discuss deep questions that face human beings
  •        State important aspects of Christian belief, and explain why they are important for Christians
  •        Appreciate the importance of the person of Jesus Christ for Christians
  •        Develop the skills to explore Bible text and to apply it to life
  •        Provide examples of Christian practice from different denominations and different nations
  •        Begin to make a thoughtful response to Christianity
  •        Recognise the significance of faith in God as a way of living, and make links between faith and faithful living
  •        Respect the faith of others, and value the journey of faith
  •        Notice areas of similarities between faiths
  •        Talk with, and listen to, each other and people of other faiths, and none, about belief
  •        Enrich and expand their understanding of truth
  •        Speak comfortably about their understandings of faith and life choice