At Stockbridge Primary and Pre-school we follow the Living Difference 3 Syllabus, the Agreed Syllabus for Hampshire, Portsmouth, Southampton and The Isle of Wight. This syllabus takes an enquiry-led approach to learning in religious education. Each term children are introduced to a concept, or as we know it ‘a big idea’. This idea will be related to the children’s own experiences before applying it to other familiar aspects of life. Finally, the idea is then contextualized within the religion the children are learning about. For example, children in Reception will compare how they celebrate their birthdays leading to them learning that Christians celebrate Jesus’ Birthday at Christmas time. In KS2 our older children’s concept in Spring term was Community. The children thought about our school community, learnt how people serve in our local community and then visited a Mosque in Southampton to learn about the local Muslim community.
Our aim is to bring RE to life and make it meaningful for our children. Through use of the cycle of enquiry and by arranging visits or visitors we believe our children broaden their knowledge of and respect for different people’s faiths, feelings and values.
RE is different from other subjects in the curriculum as there is a legal requirement for the amount of teaching hours provided. For the Lower School this is 36 hours per year and for the Upper School this is 45 hours per year. At Stockbridge, we choose to teach these in blocks at an appropriate time within our topic for each half term.
During lessons children are given the opportunity to rejoice and celebrate things that are important to them and think about their own and others beliefs, religious or otherwise. Gaining a sense of awe and wonderment when visiting a special place, meeting a new person or being part of a new experience all help to encourage children’s fascination in the world.
Tasting new foods when learning about celebrations, dressing in traditional clothes, visiting a place of worship or studying religious paintings all give our children new cultural experiences, helping to create new interests in and an opportunity to explore different faiths and beliefs. They also learn to recognise and value the things we share in common across cultural, religious, ethnic and social- economic communities.