The UK has a rich heritage of culture and different belief systems and we believe it is vital that young people are given opportunities to reflect on how these range of beliefs affect them and those around them.
By the time children leave Wimbledon Chase, we provide them with the tools to enable them to have a respectful discussion of the different major world religions, making links between these religions and challenging stereotypes. We give children a wealth of knowledge of these religions and widely held alternative beliefs, such as Atheism and Humanism.
In our RE curriculum, we not only focus on religious beliefs but also provide the children with opportunities to explore a variety of themes, such as justice and what is right and wrong. Children can then compare the attitudes of religions they have already studied, towards these themes.
How we teach RE at Wimbledon Chase Primary School
Our RE curriculum is based on the Merton SACRE, where children learn about and from religion and beliefs. The curriculum is enhanced through the use of artefacts; visiting speakers and each year, every year group has the opportunity to examine a different place of worship that links to one of their half termly units.
As a new topic in R.E is introduced, references are made to previous learning. Whilst teachers use the Merton Scheme of Work and plan alongside the RE progression grid, they build upon the detail and concepts delivered in earlier year groups. This ensures that new learning is placed in context and that teaching represents direction and a whole school approach.
At the start of a topic, key questions and vocabulary are distributed to each year group and these are discussed in the class prior to teaching and throughout the end of a topic. This allows a structure for supporting children in their oracy skills and in turn, it helps to embed the learning intention of the lesson. We draw on the children’s own knowledge of their faith by giving them a chance to share and partake in respectful discussions with their class.
Once the half termly topic is underway, artefacts, media resources and texts are used creatively to help the children visualise practices and understand concepts. Individual, paired and group activities are carried out as appropriate with the aim of ensuring learning is meaningful and recalled.
Discussions, debates, quizzes and collaborative group work demonstrate a deeper understanding of the topic and are used for assessment purposes.
To consolidate learning, each year group is given the opportunity to visit a place of worship or to invite a speaker into school as appropriate for the age phase. Such visits include the Wimbledon Synagogue, St Mary’s Church and The Buddhapadipa Temple. The Hindu temple in Effra Road sends monthly photographs to support topics. The Muslim Women of Merton Schools’ Project visit with exciting and well crafted workshops and many other individual speakers give up their time to help our pupils deepen their understanding of what faith is, and to help the children make links across the different religious beliefs.