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Religious Education

Opossum Federation Religious Education Curriculum

 

Religious Education contributes dynamically to children and young people’s education in schools by provoking challenging questions about meaning and purpose in life, beliefs about God, ultimate reality, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human.

 

Waltham Forest Agreed Syllabus 2021

 

What is Religious Education?

In religious education (RE), pupils enter into a rich discourse about the religious and non-religious traditions that have shaped Great Britain and the world.

Ofsted Research Review Series, May 2021

 

Why do we study Religious Education?

Religious Education enables pupils to take their place within a diverse multi-religious and multi-secular society. At its best it is intellectually challenging and personally enriching. It affords pupils both the opportunity to see the religion and non-religion in the world, and the opportunity to make sense of their own place in that world.  (Ofsted Research Series May 2021)

 

Effective RE has a key role to play in our schools and communities. Waltham Forest is rich in diversity of faith, belief, language and lifestyle. RE supports pupils to explore and understand their own values and beliefs and those of others in their immediate community and beyond. A depth of knowledge, understanding and acceptance is important for personal growth and for development of a broader education. It is also crucial for the development of cohesive, tolerant and caring communities. In a London borough such as Waltham Forest, with its wide diversity of faith, culture and ethnicity, and a Town motto of ‘Fellowship is Life’, it is essential to have a comprehensive RE syllabus that promotes and supports these values.  (WF Agreed Syllabus 2021).

 

Legislation in England determines:

RE is for all pupils – it is a necessary part of a ‘broad and balanced curriculum’

RE is determined locally, not nationally – a locally agree syllabus is recommended

RE is plural – the curriculum drawn up by SACRE ‘shall reflect the fact that the religious traditions in Great Britain are in the main Christian while taking account of the teaching and practices of the other principal religions represented in Great Britain’.

Parental right of withdrawal on the grounds they wish to provide their own religious education. This will be parents’ responsibility.

 

Through their study of the Opossum RE curriculum we intend that pupils will:

Engage in systematic enquiry into significant human questions which religion and worldviews address, so that they can develop the understanding and skills needed to appreciate and appraise varied responses to these question, as well as develop responses of their own

 

or put more plainly….

Explore the big questions about life, in order to find out what people believe and what difference this makes to how they live, so that pupils can make sense of religion and worldviews, and reflect on their own ideas and ways of living.

1. Know about and understand a range of religions and worldviews, so that they can:

  • Describe, explain and analyse beliefs and practices, recognising the diversity which exists within and between communities and amongst individuals.
  • Identify investigate and respond to the questions posed, and responses offered, by some of the sources of wisdom found in religions and world views
  • Appreciate and appraise the nature, significance and impact of different ways of life and ways of expressing meaning.

 

2. Express ideas and insights about the nature, significance and impact of religions and worldviews, so that they can:

  • Explain, using reasoned arguments, their ideas about how beliefs, practices and forms of expression influence individuals and communities
  • Express with increasing discernment their personal reflections and critical responses to questions and teaching about identity, diversity, meaning and value, including ethical issues
  • Appreciate and appraise varied dimensions of religion

 

3. Gain and deploy the skills needed to engage seriously with religions and worldviews, so that they can:

  • Investigate key concepts and questions of belonging, meaning purpose and truth, responding creatively
  • Enquire into what enables different individuals and communities to live together respectfully for the wellbeing of all
  • Articulate clearly beliefs, values and commitments in order to explain why they may be important in their own and other people’s lives

 

Waltham Forest Agreed Syllabus 2021

 

4. Acquire domain specific vocabulary

  • Learn and use vocabulary relating to both specific elements of individual traditions (substantive content) and that which can help them to engage in reasoned discussion about religion (ways of knowing).

 

5. Become inspired

  • Through their study of the Opossum curriculum, we intend that pupils will experience excitement and develop interest in learning about religious traditions and worldviews. We intend that this will inspire pupils to want to continue their Religious Education as they move to the next phase of their education.

 

Opossum Values

Through their study of religious and non-religious traditions, Opossum values are realised

 

Being respectful – demonstrating respect for views and traditions which are different to their own

 

Being aspirational – expectation that pupils engage in scholarly study, engage critically with ideas, understand religions and worldviews and how these shape and are shaped by societies

 

Being caring – demonstrate empathy and concern for others

 

Having integrity – reinforcing ‘doing the right thing’ which features strongly in many religious traditions

 

Being Creative – Respond to learning and express their ideas wide-ranging ways

 

Being Community minded – develop a shared understanding of each other’s values, beliefs and life choices

 

Scope and Sequence

The Opossum curriculum fulfils the requirements of the locally agreed syllabus (2021).

Religious Education begins in the EYFS with learning introduced explicitly, through direct instruction and incidentally through explorative play opportunities. Stories and real life experiences are the foundational resources in curriculum delivery. An emphasis on vocabulary and personal and social development supports learning in this curriculum area.

 

In KS1 pupils learn about a range of religious perspectives in three strands of study:

 

Believing (religious beliefs, teaching sources, questions about meaning, purpose and truth)

 

Expressing (religious and spiritual forms of expression, questions about identity and diversity)

 

Living (religious practices and ways of living, questions about values and commitments)

 

They study, in depth, the religious traditions of Christian, Muslim and Jewish people

 

In KS2 pupils learn about a range of religious perspectives in three strands of study:

 

Believing (religious beliefs, teaching sources, questions about meaning, purpose and truth)

 

Expressing (religious and spiritual forms of expression, questions about identity and diversity)

 

Living (religious practices and ways of living, questions about values and commitments)

 

During the key stage, pupils should be taught knowledge, skills and understanding through learning about

Christians, Muslims, Hindus and Jewish people. Pupils also encounter other religions and worldviews e.g. Humanists in thematic units.

 

 

Opossum Federation Religious Education Curriculum 

 

Autumn 1

Autumn 2

Spring 1

Spring 2

 

Summer 1

 

Summer 2

EYFS

F5: Where do we belong 

F4 Which times are special and why?

? F6. What is special about our world?

F2 Which people are special and why?

F3 Which places are special and why?

F1 What stories are special and why?

Year 1

1.7 What does it mean to belong to a faith community?

1.1 Who is a Christian and what do they believe? (part 1)

1.2 Who is a Muslim and what do they believe? (part 1)

1.6 How and why do we celebrate special and sacred times? (Part 1)

1.5 What makes some places sacred? This could be an RE week or fit into a cross curricular unit of study

 

Christians, Muslims, Jewish people

Christians

Muslims

Christians, Muslims or Jewish people

Christians, Muslims and/or Jewish people

Year 2

1.8 How should we care for others and the world, and why does it matter?

1.3 Who is Jewish and what do they believe?

1.2 Who is a Muslim and what do they believe? (part 2)

1.6 How and why do we celebrate special and sacred times? (Part 2)

1.1 Who is a Christian and what do they believe? (part 2)

1.4 How can we learn from sacred books?

 

Christians and Jewish people

Jewish People

Muslims

Christians, Muslims or Jewish people

Christians

Christians, Muslims and Jewish people

Year 3

L2.1 What do different people believe about God? Christian focus and either or both Hindus and Muslims

L2.8 What does it mean to be a Hindu in Britain today? (part 1)

L2.7 What does it mean to be a Christian in Britain today? (part 1)

L2.5 Why are festivals important to religious communities? Easter focus possibly an RE week

L2.2 Why is the Bible so important for Christians today?

L2.4 Why do people pray?

 

Hindus, Christians, 

Muslims

Hindus

Christians

Christians and Hindus/Jewish people/Muslims

Christians

Christians, Hindus or Muslims

Year 4

L2.9 What can we learn from religions about deciding what is right and wrong?

L2.8 What does it mean to be a Hindu in Britain today? (part 2)

L2.5 Why are festivals important to religious communities? Eid focus possibly an RE week

L2.7 What does it mean to be a Christian in Britain today? (Part 2)

L2.3 Why is Jesus inspiring to some people?

L2.6 Why do some people think that life is like a journey and what significant experiences mark this?

 

Christians, Jewish people, non-religious people (Humanist)

Hindu

Christians and Hindus/Jewish people/Muslims

Christians

Christians

Christians, Hindus and/or Jewish people

Year 5

U2.1 Why do some people think God exists? 

U2.6 What does it mean to be a Muslim in Britain today? (part 1)

U2.7 What matters most to Christians and Humanists?

U2.2 What would Jesus do? (Can we live by the values of Jesus in the twenty-first century?)

Who is a Sikh and what do they believe?

U2.4 If God is everywhere, why go to a place of worship? Possible RE week or fortnight with a focus on a visit to the church and the mandir

 

Christians, non-religious (Humanists) 

Muslims

Christians and nonreligious (Humanists)

Christians

Sikhs

Christians, Hindus and Jewish people

Year 6

U2.6 What does it mean to be a Muslim in Britain today? (part 2) 

U2.8 What difference does it make to believe in Ahimsa, Grace and/or Ummah?

U2.5 Is it better to express your beliefs in arts and architecture or in charity and generosity? Please note this unit allows for some whole class or project work that recalls past study

U2.3 What do religions say to us when life gets hard? Please note this unit allows for some whole class or project work that recalls past study about being Christian, Hindu etc

 

Muslims Christians, 

Christians, Muslims and Hindus (recap

Muslims and non-religious (Humanists)

Christians, Hindus and non-religious responses

          
 
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