RE (Religious Education)
Eaton’s Religious Education Curriculum
Our Curriculum Drivers are to promote resilience, develop communication and ensure all pupils have access to all learning possibilities both in and out of the classroom.
Our Curriculum Intent is for pupils to know more, do more and learn more.
RE at Eaton aims to give children the knowledge, critical thinking skills, open minded and respectful attitude with which to investigate the world of religion and beliefs and make their own decisions about what this means to them, whilst empathising with what it means to those who hold those beliefs. It also aims to enable children to grow spiritually by developing their awareness and skills of reflection, their experience of awe and wonder and their appreciation of stillness and silence.
What do we teach?
At Eaton, we follow the Discovery RE syllabus which encourages an enquiry approach to RE learning. The children explore one enquiry question each half term. Each enquiry follows four steps in order to answer the big question posed to the class.
The four steps are:
Step 1: Engagement: the children’s own human experience is explored to act as bridge from their world (which may or may not include religion) into the world of the religion being studied.
Step 2: Investigation: over approximately 3 lessons the teacher will guide the children to explore and investigate appropriate subject knowledge relevant to that question of enquiry.
Step 3: Evaluation: An assessment activity enables each child to show their thinking and the depth of critical evaluation.
Step 4: Expression: This refers the children back to the starting point of their own experience and allows them to reflect on whether their findings have influenced their own thinking.
Enquiry modules cover Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Sikhism and each module is delivered through engaging and challenging RE lessons. Christianity is taught in every year group, with Christmas and Easter given a fresh treatment each year, developing children’s learning in a progressive way.
How do pupils learn?
Pupils are taught RE each week in a 45-minute session, covering one enquiry within 6 sessions. Each lesson will work towards answering the big enquiry question and will include the following tools and strategies to best support and challenge the children:
- Prior knowledge activation:
Each lesson begins with a prior activation discussion: if this is the beginning of the RE unit, discussions will be based on what their previous RE unit was or if this new unit links to any other subject units they have studied i.e. PSHE. At the beginning of the subsequent lessons in the unit, children will be activating prior knowledge of the previous lessons in the unit.
- Knowledge and skills:
Each lesson or unit will have a clear knowledge focus and skill taken from the discovery RE schemes of learning. The cycle of enquiry will be followed in each unit and this lays out clear skills such as application and evaluation which will be covered in each year group. Skills will be using child, friendly language and knowledge taken from the planning documents.
Clear modelling of expectations and presentation of outcome will be completed by teachers within the lessons. This will include modelling of key vocabulary and their spellings. It will also model how children will complete the task successfully using available scaffolds and challenge activities.
- Scaffolding up:
Children will be provided with scaffolding up activities in RE which may include word mats, key vocabulary cards, pictures and keywords or alternative ways of recording. Scaffolding up will be provided for every task to ensure all RE tasks are able to be achieved by everyone.
- Different ways of recording:
Children will be provided with the option of recording work in a way that suits them, whilst over time, covering a range of ways, for example, pictures and scaffolded sheets. A range of outcomes will be seen within RE such as writing, paragraphs, mind, maps and drawings. This covers alternative ways of recording throughout RE.
How do we know what children have learned? (Impact)
Assessment is a major contributor in evidencing the impact and this needs to be tracked to ensure that pupils are building on their skills and knowledge over time. Assessment in Discovery RE is both formative and summative. Planning and teaching in RE links with 3 areas:
1) personal resonance with or reflection on the subject content in relation to the enquiry question,
2) knowledge and understanding of the subject content in relation to the enquiry question and
3) evaluation/critical thinking in relation to the enquiry question.
These are the key areas of RE teaching directed in the Norfolk Agreed Syllabus and are the three areas which are assessed in RE through Assessment for Learning in lessons as well as through summative tasks within or towards the end of a unit.
How is this subject monitored?
The RE leader spends directed time each term undertaking a range of monitoring activities, including looking at children’s books, learning walks, completing pupil voice, auditing resources, supporting teachers and evaluating the impact of the RE curriculum.