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Clyst St Mary Primary School

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Religious Education




The principal aim of religious education is to explore what people believe and what difference this makes to how they live, so that pupils can gain the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to handle questions raised by religion and belief, reflecting on their own ideas and ways of living.


At Clyst St mary, we believe that it is important for all our pupils to learn from and about religion, so that they can understand the world around them. The aim of Religious Education in our school is to help children to acquire and develop knowledge and understanding of Christianity and the other principal religions represented in Great Britain; to appreciate the way that religious beliefs shape life and behaviour, develop the ability to make reasoned and informed judgements about religious and moral issues and enhance their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. We also want to expose our children to non-religious views and encourage independent thinking.  


Religious education plays an important role in promoting social awareness and understanding in our children. We encourage our pupils to ask questions about the world and to reflect on their own beliefs, values and experiences. We include and promote British values, ensuring that children are aware of their rights and responsibilities as UK citizens. Our curriculum is designed to encourage creativity, imagination, enquiry, debate, discussion and independence.




Religious Education is a statutory subject of the curriculum for all pupils in each year group and should be provided for all registered pupils except those withdrawn at the request of their parents. In order to deliver the aims and expected standards of the syllabus effectively, the expectation is that there is a minimum allocation of five per cent of curriculum time for RE. This is set out in the table below, and based on the most recent national guidance. 

4–5s: 36 hours of RE (e.g. 50 minutes a week or some short sessions implemented through continuous provision) 

5–7s: 36 hours of tuition per year (e.g. an hour a week, or less than an hour a week plus a series of RE days) 

7–11s: 45 hours of tuition per year (e.g. an hour a week, or a series of RE days or weeks amounting to 45+ hours of RE) 


At Clyst St Mary we follow the Devon Agreed syllabus (2019-2024) to ensure coverage and progression between each year group. This agreed syllabus requires that all pupils develop understanding of Christianity in each key stage. In addition, across the age range, pupils will develop understanding of the principal religions represented in the UK, in line with the law. Furthermore, children from families where non-religious worldviews are held are represented in almost all of our classrooms. These worldviews, including for example Humanism, will also be the focus for study in thematic units.


Pupils are to study in depth the religious traditions of the following groups:


4–5s Reception: Children will encounter Christianity and other faiths, as part of their growing sense of self, their own community and their place within it. 

5–7s Key Stage 1: Christians, Jews and Muslims. 

7–11s Key Stage 2: Christians, Muslims, Hindus and Jews. 


Religious Education is generally taught on a weekly basis. Teachers may develop their own planning  linked to the ‘key questions units’ in the syllabus, allowing links with other subject areas where appropriate. Lessons are planned and delivered in a variety of ways ensuring that all children can access and participate in lessons. Interactive, practical activities encourage the children to discuss their ideas and extend their understanding of difficult concepts and challenging questions.


Pupils’ progress in RE is based on the expected outcomes outlined in the Devon Agreed Syllabus and which have been developed in line with guidance produced nationally. Each unit has a list of expected outcomes and the children’s progress is tracked against these. Progress in RE is reported annually to parents in the end of year report. 




Our teaching promotes the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of our pupils. It exposes children to other cultures and viewpoints and allows them to gain an understanding of some of the key religions represented in Britain. Our teaching enables pupils to acquire knowledge and understanding of religious beliefs, attitudes, practices and rituals. They will also develop their own beliefs and values and be able to express these confidently whilst remaining considerate and respectful of others. They will also be aware that some people have no attachment to religious beliefs and follow secular philosophies.


By following the Devon agreed syllabus and incorporating our own flexible, interactive and engaging planning we hope to provide our children with an understanding of the importance and value of religious education, with on-going benefits for an open, articulate and understanding society. 


Religious education is integral in creating a broad and balanced curriculum and provides children with the opportunity to learn about the world and other people's beliefs and experiences, allowing children to become open minded, independent and confident thinkers that enjoy engaging with challenging questions and learning new things. The Devon agreed syllabus outlines the impact of a good religious education: 


 • Religious education contributes dynamically to children and young people’s education in schools by provoking challenging questions about meaning and purpose in life, beliefs about God, ultimate reality, issues of right and wrong and what it means to be human. 

• In RE pupils learn about religions and beliefs in local, national and global contexts, to discover, explore and consider different answers to these questions. 

• Pupils learn to weigh up the value of wisdom from different sources, to develop and express their insights in response and to agree or disagree respectfully. 

• Teaching therefore should equip pupils with systematic knowledge and understanding of a range of religions and beliefs, enabling them to develop their ideas, values and identities. 

RE should develop in pupils an aptitude for dialogue so that they can participate positively in our society, with its diverse religions and beliefs. 

• Pupils should gain and deploy the skills needed to understand, interpret and evaluate texts, sources of wisdom and authority and other evidence. They should learn to articulate clearly and coherently their personal beliefs, ideas, values and experiences while respecting the right of others to differ.


Religious Education DfE Guidance






At Clyst St Mary Primary School we believe PSHE (personal, social, health and education) plays a vital part in primary education.  PSHE enables our children to acquire the knowledge, understanding and skills they need to manage their lives.  As part of a whole school approach, our aim is to develop the qualities and attributes pupils need to thrive as happy, successful and productive individuals, family members and members of society.  We aim to prepare them to manage many of the most critical opportunities, challenges and responsibilities they will face growing up in such rapidly changing and challenging times (and take these management skills into adulthood).  Our intention is that PSHE will foster pupils’ wellbeing and confidence, helping them to connect their PSHE skills and understanding to all subjects and to practical, real-life situations.  We intend that our PSHE teaching and their ongoing development and understanding in PSHE will help them to feel safe and secure enough to fulfil their academic potential.  Furthermore, we aim to provide our children with opportunities for them to learn about rights and responsibilities and appreciate what it means to be a member of a diverse society. 




All our year groups have timetabled PSHE lessons and we use the spiral scheme of work SCARF (Safety, Caring, Achievement, Resilience, Friendship) from reception to year 6 to create our PSHE curriculum that ensures progression, development and consolidation of the knowledge, understanding and skills our pupils need.  Please see our overview of PSHE planning below.  These skills are not just taught in isolation, but across the school day in incidental opportunities to support children, in assemblies, school clubs, circle time, visits and trips, community and school events, break times and within other lessons.  Some of our key visits include CAP UK who support us by delivering regular workshops on online and personal safety.  


In our programme (planned and integrated within the school day) we actively promote British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs to prepare our pupils for life in modern day Britain.  Pupils learn about similarities and differences between people and cultures and our citizenship lessons enable our pupils to understand the British democratic process, including how to affect peaceful changes in society.  




Through our PSHE curriculum, we believe we can enhance children’s education and help them to become caring, respectful, responsible and confident individuals and citizens.  Children will have the knowledge of how to develop their self-esteem and self-awareness and make informed choices and decisions. They will be able to make sense of their own personal and social experiences and will be able to understand and manage their own feelings. 


  • Children will demonstrate and apply the British Values of Democracy, Tolerance, Mutual Respect, Rule of Law and Individual Liberty 

  • Children will demonstrate a healthy outlook towards school

  • Children will demonstrate understanding of how to keep themselves healthy

  • Children will understand how to keep themselves safe at school, in the community and locality and wider world (including online)

  • Children will develop positive and healthy relationships with peers, both now and in the future

  • Children will understand the physical and emotional aspects involved in RSE at an age appropriate level

  • Children will have respect for themselves

  • Children will have positive body images


Children’s progress in PSHE is monitored through the year and these assessments are used to identify further areas of development.  PSHE assessment is measured against the pupil’s own starting points.  Children also reflect on their own PSHE learning to further their own progress and development.


Statutory PSHE and Relationships Education Curriculum (including Parent Consultation)

From September 2020, we are now required to teach Relationships Education as part of our PSHE curriculum.  These documents published by the DfE (Department of Education) can be viewed below.  A Relationships Education policy will be in place by the end of the Spring term and on the website for parents to view.  We will be having a parent consultation about the policy in the Spring term.  High quality Relationships Education in primary schools will be focused on the fundamental building blocks and characteristics of positive relationships with particular reference to friendships, family relationships, and relationships with other children and adults.  The Relationships Education curriculum will be based around these topics: ‘Families and people who care for me’, ‘Caring friendships’, ‘Respectful relationships’, ‘Online relationships’, ‘Being safe’.  If you’d like more information on what Relationships Education will include, please see pages 19 - 22 of the DfE document ‘Relationships Education, Relationships and Sex Education and Health Guidance’ (please note that Relationships and Sex Education is mandatory at secondary level only).



  RSE Topics Covered - Clyst St Mary Primary School

Year R

Me and My Body - Girls and Boys. Growing and Changing - animals

Summer Term

Year 1

Keeping Privates Private

Good or Bad touches

Summer Term

Year 2

The NSPCC Pants Campaign

Talk Pants (Video clips are available online at the NSPCC if parents want to know the content)

Summer Term

Year 3

Body Parts labelling all parts

My Body/Your Body

Body Space

 Autumn Term

Year 4

My changing Body

Summer Term

Year 5

All change

Preparing for periods

My feelings are all over the place

Growing up and changing bodies

 Autumn Term

Year 6

Recap on Puberty/ Sex education / Families/The Law

Is this normal?

Spring Term