‘From small beginnings come great things’ The Parable of the Mustard Seed Matthew 13: 31-32
At Cadmore End we will strive to apply our Christian and British values, complemented by our small-school benefits; balancing each child's educational, pastoral and emotional needs to deliver an exceptional, personalised experience, enabling them to flourish in our family and in the future.
Learning: Whilst we recognise that spirituality is not a subject that can be planned for in the same way that we plan English or Religious Education lessons, we believe that providing spiritual opportunities for our children’s learning is equally important. In light of the pandemic, our teachers collectively redesigned our curriculum for 2021-2023 so that it not only ensured pupils achieve their academic full potential but, most importantly, that our vision and values are at the forefront and embedded in everything we do.
Together: We believe that in order for children to experience spirituality and to be spiritual beings, a sense of belonging and togetherness is vital. This is provided within the context of our small school.
Life: We recognise that spirituality is a vital aspect of human life and that it develops and grows over time. We hope that the spiritual opportunities and experiences which children have in our school equip them for a lifelong spiritual journey.
At Cadmore End Church of England Primary School, we describe spirituality as becoming aware, being inspired and in awe of ourselves, one another and of the world around us. We believe that all members of our school community are spiritual beings, able to experience spiritual moments. As a Church of England school we also understand that for people with a strong religious faith spirituality can deepen this belief.
Our aim is to:
- establish the right learning environment to enable the spiritual development of all pupils through the following objectives;
- Encourage curiosity, creativity and imagination;
- Develop the ability to reflect upon experiences of awe, compassion and beauty;
- Develop a capacity to value the natural world, a sense of awe and wonder and a commitment to care for creation;
- Develop the skills and language required to enable them to reflect upon the big questions and mysteries of life;
- Develop an appreciation of what it means to be a part of a community;
- Develop strategies to build good mental health;
- Begin to understand and make sense of their own feelings and emotions around certain encounters and events that occur in their life;
- Develop an awareness that experiences of disappointment, failure and loss may be occasions for spiritual growth;
-Understand the value of difference and diversity through involvement with others;
- Develop an appreciation of their uniqueness and value as a child made in the image of God;
- Develop an understanding of the values and vision of the school;
- Develop knowledge and understanding of the school’s core Christian values and the Biblical teaching that underpins them;
- Develop an awareness of and respect for other people’s beliefs and faiths and the ability to articulate their own.
These objectives will enable the pupils to have a quality of life that encompasses the school vision and our values of respect, love, honesty, empathy, courage and faith.
Teaching and learning
Through teaching and learning, the school pursues the aims and objectives by ensuring:
-The curriculum and all areas of our community life will be driven by the school’s Christian vision and values;
- Opportunities for spiritual development are actively planned into the curriculum and encouraged in all areas of school life;
- Unplanned and spontaneous opportunities for spiritual development are recognised, acknowledged and/or celebrated by staff and children;
- Collective worship celebrates the love of God for every individual and provides opportunities for children to respond and reflect on this;
- A solid understanding of the Christian concept of God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit; of prayer and of the Bible is nurtured and developed;
- That we allocate appropriate areas in the school building and outdoor environment which provide time for silence, stillness and prayer; 4
- That children’s spiritual capacities such as imagination, empathy and insight are fostered through the creative arts and interactive multi-sensory teaching strategies making use of the outdoor environment and relevant educational visits;
- The provision of opportunities to listen attentively and observe carefully, listening with discernment, valuing what is good and worthwhile and making judgements through discussion and exchange of views and ideas, in lessons, collective worship and daily interactions with adults;
- Support for learning to live with success and failure for themselves and with others;
- That the RE curriculum delivers knowledge and understanding of spirituality from a number of world faith and world view perspectives;
- That children are given as many opportunities as possible to explore the wonder of the natural world and to develop an understanding of the Christian belief that creation is a gift from God to be enjoyed, cherished and protected;
- Promotion of strategies for positive mental health.
Approaches In our school we seek to find ways in which all areas of the curriculum can contribute to children’s spiritual development and to highlight opportunities for these in our planning by:
- Seeking to foster spiritual capacities, e.g. imagination, insight and empathy;
- Allowing children the security and opportunity to explore and express feelings and emotions in a safe environment and to celebrate diversity;
- Creating and using opportunities where children can think and share their contributions regarding fundamental questions about the meaning and purpose of life which affect everyone.
- Providing opportunities for prayer including silence and stillness;
- Sharing feelings and experiences that foster hope, joy, reassurance and encouragement;
- Encouraging children to develop relationships based on the school’s Christian vision and values;
- Enabling children to make the links between the Church and Biblical teachings, the life of the school and the wider community and how these impact on their own understanding of themselves and their place within the world today;
- Providing an environment that promotes space to reflect, think and wonder. Monitoring and evaluation Spiritual development cannot be measured and continues throughout our lives. However, opportunities offered to children for spiritual development will be monitored and evaluated in the following ways;
- Observing and listening to children;
- Regular discussion at staff and governor meetings alongside the school’s Christian vision and values;
- Sharing of classroom work and practice
- Ensuring that staff have a clear understanding of what spirituality means in this school by providing them with induction and development training;
- Evidence from pupils’ work, e.g. RE books, science work, creative writing, art;
- CPD opportunities and sharing examples of good practice.