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Religious Education

Religious Education (RE) at St James’ Junior School


RE is about exploring the big questions about life, in order to find out what people believe and what difference this makes to how they live, so that children can make sense of religion and worldviews, reflecting on their own ideas and ways of living.


It gives children the opportunity to explore their own and other's religious and spiritual beliefs and viewpoints. Understanding people's beliefs can be a first step to recognising and appreciating diversity.


It feeds into our school’s vision by enabling our children to build a shared understanding of a range of religious beliefs by visiting different places of worship and engaging in talk rich learning activities. When planning and teaching RE, our teachers link the learning to our GROW values (Grateful, Respectful, Outstanding, Welcoming).


RE is taught across the whole school from our youngest children in Year 3 to our eldest in Year 6. Our curriculum ensures that children progressively learn new knowledge and skills so that they can critically engage with a range of religions.  


Our RE curriculum combines ‘The Derby City Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education 2020-2025’ alongside the ‘Understanding Christianity’ approach to support our children’s teaching and learning. Our curriculum ensures that children can: 


1. Know about and understand a range of religions and worldviews, so that they can:

• describe, explain and analyse beliefs and practices, recognising the diversity which exists within and between communities and amongst individuals

• identify, investigate and respond to questions posed, and responses, offered by some of the sources of wisdom found in religions and worldviews

• appreciate and appraise the nature, significance and impact of different ways of life and ways of expressing meaning.


2. Express ideas and insights about the nature, significance and impact of religions and worldviews, so that they can:

• explain reasonably their ideas about how beliefs, practices and forms of expression influence individuals and communities

• express with increasing discernment their personal reflections and critical responses to questions and teachings about identity, diversity, meaning and value, including ethical issues

• appreciate and appraise varied dimensions of religion.


3. Gain and deploy the skills needed to engage seriously with religions and worldviews, so that they can:

• find out about and investigate key concepts and questions of belonging, meaning, purpose and truth, responding creatively

• enquire into what enables different individuals and communities to live together respectfully for the wellbeing of all

• articulate beliefs, values and commitments clearly in order to explain why they may be important in their own and other people’s lives. 


Within the ‘Understanding Christianity’ approach, there are eight core concepts that help to tell the 'big story' of the Bible.



Please see below our long term plan and curriculum progression grid for RE, detailing the topics each year group will cover and how our children progress through knowledge and skills from Year 3 to Year 6:

Parents may request that their child is withdrawn from Religious Education and Collective Worship. However, we would hope that all children would participate fully in school life and learn respect for those with a different faith to their own.


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