At Sharow and Skelton Newby Hall we believe that it is hugely important for all children to learn about different world religions and to engender a sense of respect for people of all faiths and none. The children will grow up alongside people who practice different religions and those who have none. We celebrate difference and seek to develop a shared understanding of some of the similarities and differences between religions.
Teachers and children have a shared understanding of the importance of teaching and learning RE and its profile in school reflects this.
In Early Years classes, RE is taught weekly, while in KS1 and KS2, RE is taught in one or two week blocks.
The locally agreed syllabus (North Yorkshire) forms the basis of our curriculum. This is to be used alongside the Understanding Christianity scheme of work which we use to develop the depth and knowledge of children and staff with the teaching of Christianity; which forms two thirds of the RE curriculum.
A pre teaching knowledge quiz needs to be done at the start of each unit of work to ascertain pupil’s prior knowledge. This will be repeated at the end of the unit and then again a few weeks later to check children’s recall.
Teaching should provide children with opportunities to discuss and debate the knowledge learnt and to form opinions.
We aim to give children a firm basis of theological knowledge which is then built upon through their school life. They will be able to articulate their knowledge and form an opinion based on listening to others.
We believe that children will have a deeper knowledge and understanding of Religion if they are able to converse about difficult ethical issues and are able to agree/ disagree with respect.
They will understand the differences and the similarities between religions and will be respectful of all beliefs.
Both schools are very lucky to be able to use local churches. At Sharow the children regularly visit St. Johns, while at Skelton the children have access to both St. Helens - a very tiny village church and Christ the Consoler on the Newby Hall estate which is steeped in local history. There are times when the whole federation attends one of the churches together.
The children are able to use the local churches as places of worship, as places to have moments of reflection and also as places to explore different elements of Christian traditions, architecture, art work, local history and even the wildlife in the churchyards.
Local Clergy are actively involved in the life of both schools, leading some of the Collective Worship, being members of the governing board and supporting religious discussion and debates.
The schools also have links with the Churches Conservation Trust who provide workshops in the church buildings and church grounds to support investigations into different aspects of Christian religion.