Religious Education

Religious Education Curriculum Statement

“Science without Religion is lame, Religion without Science is blind.”

Albert Einstein

Religious education has a central place in the curriculum of Fairhaven CE VA Primary School. The 1988 Education Act states that ‘Religious Education has equal standing in relation to core subjects of the National Curriculum in that it is compulsory for all registered pupils.’

Through our Religious Education curriculum, we aim to:

– engage pupils in enquiring into and exploring questions arising from the study of religion and belief, to promote their personal, spiritual, moral, social, and cultural development

– provide learners with knowledge and understanding of Christianity and other principal religious traditions and beliefs represented in the world

– develop their understanding of the ways in which beliefs influence people in their behaviour, practices, and outlook

– enable learners to apply the insights of the principal religious traditions to their own search for identity and significance

– enable learners to become aware of their own beliefs and values, and to have a positive attitude to the search for meaning and purpose in life

– encourage learners to develop a positive attitude towards other people who hold religious beliefs different from their own.
At Fairhaven CE VA Primary, Religious Education is taught as a discrete subject weekly in Key Stage 1 and 2. In the Early Years Foundation Stage it is incorporated into Personal, Social and Emotional Development and Understanding the World strands of learning. 

Religious Education is a statutory subject, and we ensure that we comply with the legal requirements by following the Norfolk Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education.  

Our religious education curriculum reflects the fact ‘that the religious traditions in Great Britain are in the main Christian, while taking account of the teaching and practices of the other principal religions represented in Great Britain.’ (s375 (3) Education Act 1996)

We understand that R.E. is looked at by learners using three different lenses:- Human/Social Sciences, Theology and Philosophy. These three different lenses are made clear to the children, so that they understand the different ways of looking at religious beliefs.

The following descriptions of the three lenses are taken from the Norfolk Agreed syllabus:
Human/Social Sciences:
We have called this thinking through living. It is about asking questions that people who study lived reality or phenomena would ask. It requires pupils to think like human and social scientists, or to look through a human/social science lens at concepts.
We have called this thinking through believing. It is about asking questions that believers would ask. It requires pupils to think like theologians, or to look through a theological lens at concepts.
Philosophy:We have called this thinking through thinking. It is about asking questions that thinkers would ask. It requires pupils to think like philosophers, or to look through a philosophical lens at concepts.

Teachers may develop their own key questions linked to the themes in the syllabus, allowing links with other subject areas where appropriate. We follow the Age-Related Expectations from the Norfolk Agreed Syllabus. Lessons are planned and delivered in a variety of ways, ensuring that all children can access and participate in lessons. We use materials from the Understanding Christianity Resource and from the Diocese website: https://www.diocese of

Pupils’ progress in RE is based on the expected outcomes outlined in the Norfolk Agreed Syllabus and in Understanding Christianity, which in turn have been developed in line with guidance produced nationally. 
Progress in RE is reported annually to parents and has a central position in our end of year report. Parents have the right to request that their son or daughter be excused from all or part of the RE provided at school.

Religious Education at Fairhaven CEVA Primary School develops pupils’:

– knowledge and understanding of, and their ability to respond to, Christianity, other principal world religions, traditions, and world views

– understanding and respect for different religions, beliefs, values, and traditions (including ethical life stances), through exploring issues within and between faiths

– understanding of the influence of faith and belief on individuals, societies, communities, and cultures

– skills of enquiry and response through the use of religious vocabulary, questioning and empathy

– skills of reflection, expression, application, analysis and evaluation of beliefs, values and practices, and the communication of personal responses to these.

Religious Education at Fairhaven CEVA Primary School encourages pupils to:

– consider challenging questions of the meaning and purpose of life; beliefs about God, the self and the nature of reality, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human

– understand the influence of religion on individuals, families, communities, and cultures

– learn from different religions, beliefs, values and traditions while exploring questions of meaning and their own beliefs

– learn about religious and ethical teaching, enabling them to make reasoned and informed responses to religious, moral and social issues

– develop their sense of identity and belonging, preparing them for life as citizens in a plural, global society

– develop respect for and sensitivity to others, in particular those whose faiths and beliefs are different from their own.

Religious Education at Fairhaven CEVA Primary School enhances pupils’:

– awareness and understanding of religions and beliefs, teachings, practices and forms of expression

– ability to reflect on, consider, analyse, interpret, and evaluate issues of truth, belief, faith and ethics and to communicate their responses.

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