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Religious Education


St Thomas use ‘Understanding Christianity’ as a source. Understanding Christianity is a substantial resource aimed at supporting RE teachers’ work in teaching Christianity. With funding from Culham St Gabriel’s Trust, Jerusalem Trust and Sir Halley Stewart Trust, the resource has been created by the Church of England Education Office in Partnership with RE Today. Built on Theological concepts, the project aims to help teachers support pupils in their learning about Christianity. This resource is a useful part of teaching and learning about religion and belief and should be used alongside other resources focused on the wide range of religions and beliefs relevant to the UK.

We also supplement this with 'The Emmanuel Project.' This follows an Enquiry Cycle model within each unit (Engage / Enquire / Explore / Evaluate / Express). All the units expand the EXPLORE section into three areas (scriptural text or narrative / community practice / daily living) to ensure a balanced approach to religious material, rather than an approach that focused solely on religious festivals or sacred stories. The Emmanuel Project utilises a key question, often including the key concept, as the title of the unit and more questions throughout to help structure the learning and activities. It focused on faith groups other than Christianity to ensure children receive a wide and balanced education.

The RE curriculum has been designed following a one-year cycle for each phase. We focus mainly on Christianity, however, we do ensure that Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism and Sikhism is also covered. The intention is that children gain a firm understanding of Christian values and beliefs, as well as learning about and respecting other religions. The children develop their knowledge and understanding through making sense of the text (Bible based), understanding the impact and then making connections with the wider world or personally.



Our school celebrates a large variety of children from different religious backgrounds. We ensure that they learn about each other’s beliefs and learn how to respect each other. Within the curriculum the children take part in several school trips to local places of worship – these include: the church, the mosque, the synagogue and the pagoda. The lessons are adapted where necessary to meet the needs of all children.



All teachers have received relevant in-house training to ensure that they have good subject knowledge – especially regarding the use of the ‘Understanding Christianity’ Scheme. Assessment is ongoing during RE lessons, through questioning and continuous observations.

The modelled use of vocabulary alongside the topics, as well as the trips to places of worship, provides a context to learning which helps the children to make links in their learning. This then helps the children to talk about the skills they have learnt.

As a CE school, we have Christian values embedded within our ethos. The children take part in collective worship every day which further embeds this ethos and learning from RE lessons.

Monitoring of RE is carried out by the RE leader.




Children’s progress is assessed through questioning and monitoring. Children’s work is recorded in an RE book. This reflects the long term overview and clearly shows the learning from each topic. The evidence in the books shows a wide variety of activities and deep understanding and thinking.

The children are knowledgeable and passionate about their beliefs, and seem to enjoy expressing their knowledge and opinions.

 The children leave our school with a deep understanding of different religions and beliefs.  They will have developed a sense of respect of other people, no matter their background. They will have strong values which will support them in Secondary school and beyond.