R.E. at Park Way

R.E at Park Way

Miss Muddassir is the RE subject leader at Park Way.

At Park Way we are committed to our children being aware of the different beliefs and values people hold in our local community and the wider world. For us, the teaching of R.E is invaluable in an ever-changing, shrinking world and promotes British Values.

We aim to engage all pupils in systematic enquiry into key significant human questions which religion and world views address so that they can develop the understanding and skills needed to appreciate and appraise varied responses to these questions as well as develop responses of their own. During their time at Park Way, children gather information and encounter people whose cultures, beliefs and behaviours are different from their own in order to develop a respectful attitude and enjoy the variety of different cultures in the U.K.

Felicity (Year 3) said: "We learn R.E to learn about different religions so that you can learn to respect people's different ways of doing things."

Pearl (Year 3) said when asked why we learn R.E at Park Way: "So you are not unkind when someone thinks differently to you."

Ektoras (Year 5) said: "I am Christian and it is important to me to learn about other religions. I could offend them if I didn't know what they believed."

This academic year, children from across the school have been engaged in numerous visits and enrichment opportunities to develop their knowledge, skills and understanding of other cultures and beliefs. Read below about the different experiences from this academic year.

September 2023-July 2024

Diwali Workshop

Years 1-4 recapped the story of Rama and Sita from the Hindu text, the Ramayana. They then got to re-tell the story through dance and music.  Dancing is a very big part of Hindu culture and the children got to learn some traditional dance moves whilst learning the dance.

KS1 Christmas Experience at St Martin's Church

Key Stage 1 had been learning about the Christmas story and why it is important for Christians in their RE lessons. We got the opportunity to visit St Martin's Church and take part in their Christmas Experience. We learnt that another name for this story is the Nativity.  The children moved around the church in groups, looking at each aspect of the story in more detail. We got to think about what gift we would take for baby Jesus like the 3 Wise Men did.

Years 3 and 4 Bible Workshop at St Martin's Church

Walnut, Elm and Maple class visited St Martin's Church to take part in their Bible workshop. The children got to learn about the history of the Bible, how it was constructed and the different genres that can be found in the Bible, including history and letters.  They also had the chance to look at a Bible and find the different genres within it.

Years 5 and 6 Workshop at St Martin's Church

Years 5 and 6 visited St Martin's Church to explore the church building and have some time for personal reflection. Some parts of the church that they looked at included the lectern, the altar and the font. 

KS1 Visit to Maidstone Islamic Centre

Key Stage 1 visited the Maidstone Islamic Centre as they had been learning about what a Muslim is.  The children had the opportunity to look at around the mosque and learnt that it has many different functions in the life of a Muslim, including a place of worship, learning and leisure.  The children had thought of some questions beforehand and respectfully put their questions forward. 

This is what some children said about the visit:-

Martin (Year 1) - I liked taking my shoes off at the mosque because the carpet was very soft and comfortable.

Kristian (Year 2) - In the mosque, it was very peaceful. 

Park Way's Diversity Week 

In June, Park Way held Diversity Week to celebrate all the different cultures and backgrounds our pupils come from.  Our EYFS and KS1 classes took part in a workshop where they got to learn about Bulgarian clothes and also learnt some traditional Bulgarian dance moves.

Key Stage 2 classes learnt how the Haka Maori dance was developed by tribes to create fear and awe.  It is now often seen during rugby matches. The children then learnt some dance moves and also got the chance to create their own Haka moves. 

During the week, the children in Key Stage 2 classes worked in pairs.  They chose a country to research and designed some activities to teach children from EYFS and KS1 about those countries.  Then at the end of the week they had the chance to share their learning with the younger children.

On the Friday, children were encouraged to come to school wearing traditional outfits from their own culture or their best clothes.  In Key Stage 1, parents were invited to see what the children had learnt during the week and also to share snacks from their cultures.

 

KS1 Wedding Workshop at St Martin's Church (information to follow)

September 2022-July 2023

KS1 and Year 3 and 4 took part in a Diwali Dance Workshop.

The children learnt about the festival of Diwali and how Hindus celebrate the festival of light. They learnt about the importance of dance and recreated the story of Rama and Sita through traditional dance.  

 

Year 5 and 6 Trip to Maidstone Mosque

Year 5 and 6 were learning about what it means to be Muslim in Britain today. They visited Maidstone Mosque and had a chance to pose questions to the imam.  

The mosque sent us the following feedback after the visit: It was a pleasure having the children attend our centre and we found them very engaging. Their behaviour was fantastic and they asked some thoughtful questions during the short session.

This is what some children said about the visit:

Alice (Year 5) - I liked our visit to the mosque. It was very comfortable because it had cushions.

Oliver (Year 5) - I was not expecting the mosque to be inside a house.

Lucy (Year 6) - We went to visit a mosque recently. I really enjoyed it and would like to visit other places of worship. 

KS1 Visit to St Martin's Church

KS1 visited St Martin's Church in Maidstone to take part in their Easter Experience. The children had been learning about Jesus' last days leading up to Easter and this workshop allowed them to understand the story in a multi-modal way. Janet and Esther from the church walked groups around to each station where the children could focus on a part of the Easter story. 

Anthony (Year 2) - I liked the Easter Experience because we got to think about what happened to Jesus.

Felicity (Year 2) - My favourite thing this year was going to the church because we got to learn a lot of things that Christians do and believe.

 

Holi Celebrations at Park Way

This year we decided to hold Holi Celebrations at Park Way. Holi is a festival celebrated by Hindus to commemorate the start of Spring. The children came to school dressed in colourful clothing and then learnt more about the festival during the day. In the afternoon, the children went onto the school field to throw coloured powder at each other which is a key part of the Holi festival. This is what the children had to say about the day:

Alda (Year 5) - Holi Day was really fun. We got to see how things are celebrated in different countries.

Alice (Year 6) - I thought it was a really good. We got to share with someone else's religion. It was a really good experience and it was a joke and a laugh.

Victoria (Year 4) - I liked the Holi festival. The learning was very fun. 

Oliver (Year 2) - I enjoyed the Holi festival. We threw powder at other people. It was fun to learn what Hindus do to celebrate Holi.

 

KS1 Visit to the Synagogue

The Key Stage 1 classes have been learning about who is Jewish and what they believe in their R.E lessons. Holly, Ivy and Oak Class visited the Chatham Memorial Synagogue in Rochester and got to see the features of a synagogue in real life. They were amazed at the size of the Torah and learnt that it can take a whole year to finish reading the Torah because it is so long. The children learnt about Jewish festivals such as Hannukah, got to experience the sound of a shofar and tasted some unleavened bread (matzah).  Howard who works at the synagogue also read a part of the Torah to the children in Hebrew.

All of the children behaved in a very respectful manner and were a true credit to Park Way Primary School.  The questions they asked were well thought out and respectful.  The children understood that in today's world we need to respect each other's beliefs even if we don't believe in the same things.

Kent SACRE's WIRE Award

In July 2023, Park Way Primary School was awarded the WIRE award. This is awarded to schools in Kent that are proactive with the teaching of their R.E and are striving to become more inclusive.  We were given the award in a special assembly and it will stay with us for 3 years.

Schools have to teach RE but parents can withdraw their children for all or part of the lessons.  Please contact the school to discuss this.