'I am the truth, the way and the life' John 14:16
As St Peter’s is a Catholic primary school, our entire curriculum is immersed in our faith and the teachings of the Church. We aim to create a vibrant, living faith community where young people are enabled to develop a strong set of Catholic Christian values which will inspire and guide them in all aspects of their daily lives.
As well as the Catholic faith being taught in lessons, it is practised regularly and frequently in all aspects of school life. Everyone in the school aims to live out the St Peter’s mission statement, ‘Christ at the Centre’, in their daily lives.
Through the teaching of Religious Education and practise of collective worship, the school aims to make a dedicated contribution to a child’s spiritual development alongside academic, personal, moral and cultural development by:
- Supporting the mission of the school in communicating an understanding of Christ’s love, underpinning the entire ethos,
- Helping to develop children’s own beliefs, values and attitudes through an exploration of Christ and discipleship as found in scripture as well as human experience,
- Knowing and understanding the place of Christianity and other faiths, with the emphasis on Roman Catholic beliefs, in parish, wider community and contemporary world,
- Delivering R.E. through the Portsmouth diocese approved scheme of work, ‘God Matters’, and other resources as appropriate.
Alongside our all-encompassing ‘Christ at the Centre’ ethos, Religious Education involves three main areas: worship, teaching and learning and assessment.
Throughout their time in school, children are given opportunities to develop their own prayer life through a variety of experiences. Everyday beings with class prayers and there is either a daily assembly or collective worship- all of which are centred around scripture. Throughout the year, we also celebrate a host of masses and liturgies which parents and parishioners are always welcome to attend.
Teaching and Learning
Teachers use a wide variety of approaches when teaching Religious Education. At St Peter’s, we follow the Portsmouth diocese scheme of work, ‘God Matters’, to structure, plan and teach R.E. lessons throughout the school. This programme is centred around scripture and follows the liturgical calendar. It exposes children to stories from the Bible, the messages they convey and most importantly, how they are relevant to living our mission today. Each lesson challenges children’s thinking and encourages reflection.
Children are encouraged to discuss R.E. at a deeper level through a ‘’big question’ approach. They are encouraged to link their response to these ideas and discussions back to their daily lives and support and justify them with scripture teachings.
The ‘God Matters’ scheme also explores other faiths. During the year, each class carry out focussed teaching on another faith - Judaism, Sikhism or Islam - to highlight the importance of understanding and tolerance to what others believe. The children are also encouraged to compare the other faith with Christianity.
At St Peter’s, it is also recognised that R.E. has a unique role to play in the building of individual learners’ self-esteem. As well as written outcomes, all pupils can find a means to relate to the subject through means such as role-play, art and discussion. The importance of continuity and progression is recognised through each discrete unit that makes up the scheme of work.
Assessment and Evaluation
Assessment in R.E. is carried out in a variety of ways by each class teacher. In lessons, this can take the form of observations, discussion and questioning. Following this, marking written work and providing feedback is essential and core to assessment in R.E. Teachers carefully compare beginning of unit ‘cold’ question responses with the children’s end of unit ‘hot’ question response to assess the impact of teaching and learning in each individual unit. Phase teams also carry out moderation to compare levels of assessment across year groups and key stages. Assessment is always used to help inform next steps and future planning.
'To help children to know and love the Lord ever more is one of the most beautiful education adventures, for it comprises the Church’ – His Holiness, Pope Francis