Statement of Intent
RE Intent Statement
At SMSJ, we follow the Blackburn with Darwen (Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education) recommended syllabus supplemented with the Questful syllabus (developed by Blackburn Diocesan Board of Education). Our syllabus is broadly Christian, but children also learn about other world religions including: Islam, Hinduism, Judaism, Sikhism and Buddhism. Our aims are for all our children to understand:
- Religious Education has a significant role for the development of pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. It promotes respect and open-mindedness towards others with different faiths and beliefs and encourages pupils to develop their sense of identity and belonging through self-awareness and reflection. We help children to learn from religion and about religion.
- The principle aim of RE is to engage pupils in an enquiry approach where they can develop an understanding and appreciation for the expression of beliefs, cultural practices and influence of principle religions and worldviews in the local, national and wider global community.
Our RE scheme of work is based on the locally agreed syllabuses, along with planned opportunities to meet the very specific needs of our children. Given that the majority of our children have English as an Additional Language (EAL) and are of Asian heritage, these opportunities focus on:
Language development and understanding of key Religious vocabulary
Learning environments are language rich and topic covers are used to mark RE units of work in children’s books. These provide key words, definitions and images to support the unit. Children learn the key vocabulary content for specific faiths. In addition, regular writing opportunities are provided to enable children to practise skills and demonstrate their understanding of the content taught.
In every lesson, opportunities are provided for children to discuss aspects of different faiths in pairs and within groups. Children are given the opportunity to present their knowledge through presentations at the end of a unit of study.
In order to broaden children’s life experiences, we provide first-hand learning opportunities which expose children to Religion in the world around them. We have developed strong links with Blackburn Cathedral and other places of worship and we invite people of different faiths into school to share their experiences with our children. In addition, we have an annual Knowledge and Understanding of the World week in school where children work on an exciting project linking religion, history and geography. Our Christian Values, which are common to other world religions, are promoted at every opportunity and we teach children about the values and beliefs of people around the world.
At SMSJ it is our intent that learners of all abilities develop a wide range of skills such as enquiry, analysis, interpretation, evaluation and reflection, thus deepening children’s understanding of the impact of religion on the world, and enabling them to express personal views with consideration and confidence. To enable children to learn and remember more, quick quizzes take place at the beginning of each lesson and new language is promoted at every opportunity.
At SMSJ, we know how crucial it is for staff to have current, up to date skills in this ever changing society and the subject leader endeavours to share updates on a regular basis which gives staff the subject knowledge and first-hand experience to deliver effective, engaging lessons. New staff also receive hands on training to ensure they are confident in delivering effective Religious Education lessons at SMSJ.
RE and our School Vision
At SMSJ, we firmly believe that ‘With God, all things are possible’ (Matthew 19:26), and we are dedicated to ensuring that all learners embrace this throughout their Religious Education lessons. We nurture all children by encouraging them to be proud of their own religion and share their ideas in a respectful manner. We inspire them with the opportunity to learn about new faiths and create links between the main world religions: Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Judaism, Sikhism and Buddhism. All of the learners at SMSJ, achieve in their own way, whether that is through gaining knowledge of new faiths and beliefs, confidence in class discussions, resilience in understanding everyone does not hold the same beliefs, but everyone deserves the same respect. RE at SMSJ is lead with passion and commitment as we believe that all learners deserve the very best education. We aim to make a significant contribution in preparing pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life. Our Christian Values underpin school life and they empower pupils to make positive choices.