The school follows the Religious Education Syllabus (Questful RE), devised and recently updated by Blackburn Diocese. The scheme incorporates a wide range of topics centred on Christian teaching. Lessons include many aspects of the Christian faith including increasing the knowledge of the Bible; relating religious teaching to current society and understanding the significance of main events in the church’s calendar. Some topics are revisited each year so that children may increase their understanding in line with their increasing maturity.
Blackburn Diocesan Board of Education believes that high quality Religious Education (RE) is the key to enabling every child to flourish.
This RE syllabus that we are currently following is a revision of ‘Questful RE’ the Blackburn Diocesan Board of Education RE syllabus 2017. Building on the foundation of the 2007, 2013 and 2017 syllabuses the scheme has been updated and redesigned the content, bringing it in line with current best practice and pedagogical strategies.
By embracing the explicit teaching of Christian concepts and God’s big salvation story, it is hoped that the content of this syllabus will give our pupils a deeper understanding of Christianity. In addition, pupils will explore all major world faiths and discuss world views where appropriate.
Quality RE has the potential, more than any other subject, to have the most powerful and lasting effect on the child’s heart and mind. It is a subject that combines academic rigour with the development of the character and spirit of the child. RE provides opportunities for spiritual development and personal reflection. On a quest to discover more about religion and world views our pupils will discover more about themselves. As RE develops our children’s knowledge and understanding of the nature of religion and belief, it provokes challenging questions about meaning and purpose, truth and values, identity and belonging. Our pupils will experience, explore and encounter a wide range of creative and challenging multi-sensory activities that will help them to discover the answers to fundamental questions such as these: –
- Who am I and what does it mean to be me?
- In what ways do/can I relate to others?
- How/where can I encounter God?
- How can I make a positive contribution to the world in which I live?
- What values, attitudes, beliefs and behaviour are important to me?
- What does it mean to have faith?
- Who/what influences and inspires me?
Through an open investigative enquiry approach our pupils will be given the sense of being on a quest of discovery. A key feature of the syllabus is the large number of questions included in each unit. The purpose of these questions is to give our pupils the opportunity to investigate, reflect, evaluate and make meaning. In doing so they will discover more about themselves, their relationships with others, their relationship with the world around them and their relationship with God. The questions set the route through the curriculum content.
The curriculum content is a balance of the three essential disciplines of quality RE, Theology, Philosophy and Social Science. This means our pupils will look at concepts through a theological lens, exploring what people of faith believe. Alongside this, our pupils will explore questions and answers raised in relation to the lived reality and impact of religion and world views on people’s lives. They will also think like philosophers, and be equipped with the skills that will enable them to make sense of life’s experiences.
RE prepares our children for citizenship in today’s diverse society. It enables them to develop sensitivity to, and respect for others. Through authentic encounters with living faith communities, pupils will develop diversity dexterity and be equipped with the ability to hold an informed conversation about religious beliefs and practices.
The Role of world Faiths and Cultures
Our school promotes the fundamental British value of respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.
As part of our aim to help children fully embrace society and the wider world community, other faiths are valued and treated with respect.
Questful RE incorporates the teaching of other main world religions. As such, whilst the majority of the curriculum is centred around Christianity, some time will be spent on the other major world faiths; in particular Judaism, Islam and Hinduism.
Blackburn Diocesan board of education website: http://www.bdeducation.org.uk
All children at Barrowford St Thomas are encouraged to embrace the diversity of life offered within our world. We work towards this goal through education against ignorance. Wherever possible, we look to visitors to help support our aim so that learning is accurate, meaningful and enjoyable. Through the 'Building Bridges' project, Pendle we have a link with Whitefield Infant School in Nelson. The school population at Whitefield Infant school is predominately Muslim. Our Year 2 pupils visit the pupils in Whitefield and they come to visit us. For example, this year the children from Whitefield Infant school spent a morning with us and visited St Thomas' Church.
We believe in the importance of all our pupils visiting different places of worship throughout their time with us. The children will visit a synagogue, mosque and a Hindu temple. Our children also visit different denominations of the Christian Church and ensure that our children develop their understanding of multi-cultural Christianity.
Parents do have the right to withdraw children from worship and Religious Education lessons. Alternative provision for a child’s education would be made should a parent wish this. Currently, all parents choose for their children to take part in all of our worship and curriculum arrangements. Either way our school will always uphold and fully respect parents’ wishes.
The RE subject leader is Mrs Michelle White
Religious Education Policy
Key Stage 1
Key Stage 2