Religious Education & PSHCE
We believe at Hollydale that religion and beliefs inform our values and are reflected in what we say and how we behave. RE is an important subject in itself, developing an individual’s knowledge and understanding of the religions and beliefs which form part of contemporary society.
Religious Education is taught in a variety of ways using a range of resources including:
- role play and drama
- class and paired discussion
- use of artefacts and video clips
- brainstorming and thinking of key ideas
Opportunities are given to children throughout each session to reflect on learning and ideas discussed. We encourage children to make links to their own experience. This ensures that children are not only learning about religion but learning from it regardless of their own faith.
We use the Southwark Agreed Syllabus as a basis for our teaching and cover the six main religions:
RE also contributes to pupils’ personal development and well-being and to community cohesion by promoting mutual respect and tolerance in a diverse society. RE can also make important contributions to other parts of the school curriculum such as citizenship, personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE education), the humanities, education for sustainable development and others. It offers opportunities for personal reflection and spiritual development, deepening the understanding of the significance of religion in the lives of others – individually, communally and cross-culturally.
We teach PSHE using the Jigsaw scheme for Years 1-6. PHSE is taught in all year groups through a mindful approach as we believe that mindful children can more readily choose their responses to situations rather than react while caught up in the thought-flows and emotions.
In Jigsaw PSHE, mindfulness is developed through the ‘Calm Me’ time in each lesson. This consists of breathing techniques, awareness exercises, visualisations etc, all tried, tested and very enjoyable activities for children and teachers alike.
Jigsaw brings together PSHE Education, emotional literacy, social skills and spiritual development in a comprehensive scheme of learning. Teaching strategies are varied and are mindful of preferred learning styles and the need for differentiation. Jigsaw is designed as a whole school approach, with all year groups working on the same theme (Puzzle) at the same time. This enables each Puzzle to start with an introductory assembly, generating a whole school focus for adults and children alike.
The Six Puzzles
There are six Puzzles in Jigsaw that are designed to progress in sequence from September to July for Y1 – 6:
Autumn 1: Being Me in My World
Autumn 2: Celebrating Difference (including anti-bullying)
Spring 1: Dreams and Goals
Spring 2: Healthy Me
Summer 1: Relationships
Summer 2: Changing Me (including Sex Education)
Each Puzzle has six Pieces (lessons) which work towards an ‘end product’, for example, The School Learning Charter or The Garden of Dreams and Goals.
Each Piece has two Learning Intentions: one is based on specific PSHE learning (covering the non-statutory national framework for PSHE Education but enhanced to address children’s needs today); and one is based on emotional literacy and social skills (covering the SEAL learning intentions but also enhanced). The enhancements mean that Jigsaw is relevant to children living in today’s world as it helps them understand and be equipped to cope with issues like body image, cyber and homophobic bullying, and internet safety.
Below is a sample of all 6 Puzzles for Y4:
SMSC (Spiritual, Moral, Social, Cultural) development
Every Piece (lesson) contributes to at least one of these aspects of children’s development. This is mapped on each Piece and balanced across each year group.
The Learning Environment
Establishing a safe, open and positive learning environment based on trusting relationships between all members of the class, adults and children alike, is vital. To enable this, it is important that ‘ground rules’ are agreed and owned at the beginning of the year and are reinforced in every Piece – by using The Jigsaw Charter. (Ideally, teachers and children will devise their own Jigsaw Charter at the beginning of the year so that they have ownership of it.) It needs to include the aspects below:
The Jigsaw Charter
- We take turns to speak
- We use kind and positive words
- We listen to each other
- We have the right to pass
- We only use names when giving compliments or when being positive
- We respect each other’s privacy (confidentiality)
The Structure of the Pieces (lessons) in Jigsaw
The creation of Jigsaw is motivated by the genuine belief that if attention is paid to supporting children’s personal development in a structured and developmentally appropriate way, this will not only improve their capacity to learn (across the curriculum) but will ultimately improve their life chances. That’s why Jigsaw is completely child-focussed. This is reflected in the innovative way that Pieces (lessons) are structured. In designing the Pieces, we imagine that children are asking the teacher to:
- Improve their social skills to better enable collaborative learning (Connect us)
- Prepare them for learning (Calm me)
- Help the brain to focus on specific learning intentions (Open my mind)
- Initiate new learning (Tell me or show me)
- Facilitate learning activities to reinforce the new learning (Let me learn)
- Support them in reflecting on their learning and personal development (Help me reflect)