In the life of faith of English Martyrs CVA, Religious Education plays a central and vital part, it is the foundation of the entire educational process. RE is a core subject in our school which occupies ten percent of our timetable and the majority of classroom teaching is delivered through the Diocesan 'Come and See' Programme. A termly newsletter is sent home with more information about what is covered within lessons across each key stage. In September 2012 the school, like all of those in the Nottingham diocese, replaced the ‘Here I Am’ syllabus with a new programme called ‘Come and See’. ‘Come and See’ invites pupils to explore the religious aspects of life, dignity and purpose within the Catholic tradition. Pupils reflect on personal experiences and links are made with the Catholic faith as well as other faith traditions.
At the heart of our RE curriculum are our 'Big Questions', which ultimately drive the learning of the topic. These questions remain open ended and challenging, providing children with opportunities to engage with the deepest questions of life (Peter 3:15), encouraging pupil collaboration, discussion and reflection. Children are exposed to the mystery of God, the teachings of Jesus Christ and the Church, lives of Saints and the relationship between faith and life.
RE is a core subject and, in line with the Bishops' Conference recommendations, 10% of teaching time is allocated to RE per week. This equates to two hours for KS1, and two and a half hours for KS2.
A variety of teaching methods and resources are used, including stories from the Bible, songs and hymns, role play, liturgical dance, creative activities, videos and discussion.
The pupils study three themes each term and 63 topics in total from Reception through to Year 6.
The themes are: Advent term: Our church - Family, Baptism and Confirmation - Belonging, Advent and Christmas - Loving.
Lent term: Local church - Community, Eucharist - Relating, Lent and Easter - Giving.
Pentecost term: Pentecost - Serving, Reconciliation - Inter-relating, Universal church - World.
All of the topics are rooted in the children's own experiences in life and our teachers then extend the learning further through reflection and purposeful activities. We look at scripture passages that match the topic being covered and unpick the meaning and how we can use this Scripture to enhance our lives and help us to be better Christians.
We assess our children in RE using the Nottingham Diocese End of Year Expectations document, which uses key driver words for each year group. We make use of external and internal moderation opportunities to ensure the quality of teacher’s judgments, as well as half-termly book scrutinies to ensure work is engaging and is sufficiently challenging for all pupils.
During the academic year, two other faiths are also taught; during the Advent term we learn about Judaism and during the Pentecost term, we discover more about another world religion such as Islam, Sikhism or Hinduism.
Each term, parents receive an information sheet that details what the pupils will cover as well as some suggested activities that can be done at home to support pupils.
For more information about RE teaching at English Martyrs, please take a look at the Parent Booklet.