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Religious Education

            Mrs Gale                               Mr B Hall

      RE Subject Lead                 Subject Governor

What we believe for our curriculum

At Birchwood Primary School we believe that Religious Education provides an opportunity to celebrate and foster awareness of the differences within our school and the wider world. It is a subject that celebrates diversity and challenges stereotypes. 

RE is taught in accordance with the aims of the Suffolk Agreed Syllabus. Particularly relevant to our school is the aim which states: 

‘Religious Education should help pupils to develop a positive attitude towards other people, respecting their right to hold different beliefs from their own, and towards living in a society of many religions and beliefs.’


At Birchwood we know that children learn best when the curriculum is well sequenced to enable revisiting of core knowledge, skills and understanding to deepen conceptual awareness before demanding application across the whole curriculum. Please see the RE Progression of Skills documents, which outline how the key skills are developed, revisited, assessed and built upon during Reception to Year 6.


Legal Requirements 

RE is taught in accordance with the aims of the Suffolk Agreed Syllabus. In accordance with the law we provide religious education for all pupils registered at the school. Parents are informed in the school prospectus that they have the right to withdraw their pupils from religious education. Parents who choose to withdraw their children from Religious education lessons are required to state this in writing annually to the Head of School. 


The Scheme of Work 

The scheme of work for Religious Education covers all the requirements of the Agreed Syllabus. RE is taught in half-termly units in a combination of religion-based and thematic topics. We use the Emmanuel Project to deliver all of the requirements for RE. RE is taught weekly to ensure the children know more and remember more through revisiting and recalling prior knowledge. 


RE and our Community

We endeavour to draw on the varied experiences and backgrounds of our pupils and staff in order to make RE relevant and interesting to our pupils. One way of doing this is through our links with local religious communities and places of worship. 


At Birchwood Primary we know that the disciplinary knowledge of RE, ‘ways of knowing’ and ‘personal knowledge’, will create well-rounded and tolerant individuals, especially when they go out into the wider community and meet people from faiths, cultures and nationalities different from their own.


There are literally hundreds of ways we can demonstrate the excellent impact our curriculum design has on our pupils. In a nutshell, here are some examples:

  1. For the school year 2022/23 Birchwood received the ‘Widening Inclusivity in Religious Education (WIRE) Award’. This award demonstrates that RE provision at Birchwood School is broad and inclusive. We are proactive with our teaching of RE by seeking opportunities for our pupils to speak with members of a wide selection of religious groups. Pupils see religion in action through visiting, for example, the local Sikh Gurdwara and visits to our school from members of the Muslim faith.
  2. As a school, we have close links with our local church. Here pupils have celebrated Harvest, Christmas and Easter. The stories and symbolism of these festivals are shared with the pupils in an interactive way; enabling them to develop their knowledge and understanding of Christianity and the influence of religion on individuals, families, communities and cultures. We also visit a more traditional church, St. Marys, Martlesham, where pupils have explored the more traditional church building and associated stained galss windows depicting Christian stories.


Harvest 2022 at St. Michael's Church

Harvest Celebration 2020 - 'Harvest Time'

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RE at Birchwood

Year 5 children enjoying a shared meal whilst learning about the Langar Kitchen as part of their unit of work on Sikh commitment.

Visits we have made to places of worship

Click here for our Progression of Skills, Knowledge, Understanding and Vocabulary documents. These sequencing documents show how knowledge builds from EYFS year by year to the end of Y6 so that children know more and remember more.