Purpose and Aims
For pupils to develop their knowledge and understanding of religions and beliefs which form part of contemporary society provoking questions about the ultimate meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God, the nature of reality, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human. They will gain knowledge and understanding of Christianity and of other principal religions, traditions and worldviews that offer answers to questions such as “Why are we here?” and “Why was the world made?” Pupils will have opportunities for personal reflection and spiritual development, deepening their understanding of the significance of religion in the lives of others – individually, communally and cross-culturally. They will appreciate how religious beliefs and moral values can help individuals develop moral awareness and understanding in a diverse and global world.
- For pupils to develop knowledge and understanding of sources of wisdom and their impact through sacred texts and other sources of wisdom. They will have opportunity to express their own ideas about the nature of beliefs, values and practices and their impact upon the identity of individuals and communities.
For pupils to express their own personal and critical responses with increasing discernment, personal reflections, critical responses and connections to faith and belief enquiring into philosophical, moral and ethical issues. Engage with questions and answers offered by religions and worldviews. Develop skills required to dialogue with others and to cooperate in society with respect and compassion.
Our curriculum is based on eight key areas of learning:
Beliefs and Practices
Sources of Wisdom
Symbols and Actions
Prayer, Worship and Reflections
Identity and Belonging
Human Responsibility and Values
Justice and fairness
Depth and breadth will be achieved by incorporating all the eight key elements into planning and teaching them throughout the school year which will increase pupil’s understanding of varying religions and worldviews, recognising their local, national and global contexts. Pupils will be encouraged to demonstrate respect and compassion, recognising a range of viewpoints about identity and belonging. They will consider and discuss important issues relating to moral choices. They will explore shared human responsibility and values through enquiry and experience and express personal reflections with increasing curiosity.
Progression and Assessment
Our progression has 2 key objectives which are achieved by developing the pupil’s religious and theological literacy through religions and worldviews. Pupils should grow in developing their religious vocabulary and their ability to communicate and understand a range of theological and religious concepts and worldviews.
Assessment and reporting
We will assess the pupil’s depth of understanding each term through pupil voice and books and teacher’s planning.
Monitoring, Evaluation and Improvement
The role of the leader in monitoring pupil’s outcomes is to audit teacher’s judgements. This is done collectively in staff meetings and then collated by the leader. The leader then works collectively with the teachers to examine the strengths of the provision along with the areas for development for the provision. The leaders then create an action plan to improve achievement. The leader keeps track of the improvements they have secured over time to understand how effect the provision is.
St Alban's Cathedral, Year 5 School Trip, December 2018
On Tuesday 11th December, we travelled to the St Albans Cathedral for Dahl classes’ school trip. We were fascinated by all of the intricately designed statues and carvings, not to mention the facts we learnt!
As soon as we arrived at the cathedral, we were welcomed in and were lucky enough to have our own private tour. First, we were split up into two groups to start looking around. Our group was shown the ‘Font’ where people were baptised/ christened. We were even allowed to see it being done by three class members. One was the font, one was the priest and the other was the person being christened. It was really interesting to be able to see the procedure that Christians go through in front of us.
Next we learnt about the advent wreath. We were shown one and the guide explained to us the meaning of each candle and what the colour represents. They each were a memoir for one or a group of people and what they did in relation to Christmas and their good deeds. We also went on and learnt that the colour of the cope that bishops wear during advent is purple/violet.
After that we learnt all about St Albans and the blue and gold crest of his. Did you know that people believe when he was about to be executed, roses sprang up from the ground wherever he stepped? The rose is now symbolic to the St Albans’ abbey. After lunch, we went to a special room where we were given a lump of clay which we were going to make a tile out of. This session was a particular highlight to most of the children. A popular theme for our creations was a rose/flower, an angel or a cross.
We really enjoyed our trip and would definitely recommend it to other classes, schools, or people as it is super educational.
Report by Lottie Watson and Lauren Daly
Buddhism Symbolism, Year 6, November 2018
This week in Year 6 we have been learning about the symbolism of mudras (hand gestures) in Buddhism and linking them to hand gestures in other religions to explore similarities and differences between religions. The children then created their own mudras to symbolise an important belief of their own. Wonderful peacefulness and thoughtfulness in this session.
Diwali Celebrations, KS1 and EYFS, November 2018
On Wednesday Ladybird class, Elmer class and Aslan class learnt how people around the world celebrate Diwali. They listened to the story of Rama and Sita and learnt why Diwali is called the Festival of Lights. They had lots of fun making rangoli patterns to decorate the classroom. They also made Diwali cards and Divas. Elmer class had a go at some traditional dancing using dandyia sticks and some children were even brave enough to perform to the rest of the class
At Harpenden Academy we aim to provide variety and curiosity as children learn about world faiths and beliefs.
Reception pupils looked at henna patterns to create their own designs relating to the Hindu festival of Diwali.
Year 5 designed and created their own crowns when looking at the beliefs of Druids and the link with nature.
Key Stage 1 Christingle Service 2017
Year 2 looked at the meaning behind Jesus washing the disciple’s feet and talked about the importance of serving one another.
Year 2 visit to St Nicholas Church in Harpenden