The Church of England's Vision for Education states a core desire that children will experience life in all its fullness (John 10:10). At St Andrew's we believe that we need to give all our children the chance to allow them to grow into the people God is calling them to be.
We believe that is is essential to explore Spirituality by educating the whole child, providing opportunities to be still and reflect, to explore their own spirituality and to respect others' spirituality and much more. Spirituality enables our children to be happy, flourish and succeed and live life in all its fullness.
What is spirituality?
- Religion and worship
- Relationships to other and/or to God
- Evocative or favourite places and experiences
- Creativity and responses to Art and music
- Mystery and what we can’t really understand
- Prayer, silence and meditation
- The opposite of what we can touch and feel (the material world)
- Experiences which take us beyond ourselves
- What is everlasting, or transcendent or ultimate
Ofsted, in 2019, highlighted the importance of spirituality in schools and stated that;
“Pupils’ spiritual development is shown by their: beliefs, religious or otherwise, which inform their perspective on life and their interest in and respect for different people’s feelings and values sense of enjoyment and fascination in learning about themselves, others and the world around them, including the intangible use of imagination and creativity in their learning willingness to reflect on their experiences.”
As part of our mission to 'grow learners to live in God's world', we also want to grow reflective and spiritual learners.
SPIRITUALITY THROUGH REFLECTION
Our pupils encounter a wide variety of reflection opportunities over their time with us. These include, but are not limited to: daily collective worship; reflection tasks linked to worship; responding in their reflection journals (KS2) or class worship books (KS1); prayer club; regular whole-school 'prayer spaces'; an ambitious and broad curriculum including topics linked to concepts such as injustice, equality, wellbeing, environmental justice, social action, economic inequality and much more; reflection spaces available in classrooms, library, reflection garden; choir; events such as leavers' service. We want to ensure that our pupils think about their own place in the world.
Here are a range of photos demonstrating opportunities used to develop spirituality in our pupils.
SPIRITUALITY ACROSS THE CURRICULUM
The children encounter a range of opportunities, within and outside of collective worship, to develop their own spiritual journey. A variety of opportunities are included throughout the curriculum, whereby we encourage our pupils to reflect and consider their own actions in a number of different ways.
Our ambitious topic-based approach ensures that children are exposed to a wide variety of spiritual and deep questions, enabling them to think about their place in the world and to think beyond themselves about challenging concepts such as stewardship, justice, discrimination, exploitation and social action.
Spirituality is developed in many areas of the curriculum, but most notably in RE. Our pupils love RE and enjoy the breadth of the curriculum as well as the creativity that is integral to our delivery of the subject.
A selection of pupils spoke to the RE subject leaders in February 2022. Here is a summary of their views:
- Children love RE and could talk confidently about what they are learning
- Children across the school could discuss Christianity and other faiths
- Children loved things like: drama, role play, art, double page spreads, learning about holy texts
- Children could also articulate (in particular UKS2) where they have learned about various religions through the school and identified that they were now learning about a different part of the religion