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 2) said: "We learn R.E to learnt about different religions so that you can learn to respect people's different ways of doing things."
Pearl (Year 2) said when asked why we learn R.E at Park Way: "So you are not unkind when someone thinks differently to you."
Barnabas (Year 6) said: "R.E is about learning about different cultures. We also learn about History. About role-models and people that changed the world."
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.
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.