Senior Leaders at Blair Peach Primary School offered the following feedback:
What does the Companion link with your local parish church mean to the school?
Raises awareness of the initiatives and support programmes that one particular group is undertaking in the wider community. The Companion Link (ALMA) offers opportunities for establishing sustainable overseas partnerships and strengthening links with a local church. As it is a local church with which the school has already got established links it means that ALMA’s work and partnerships are accessible. Linking up, discussing and putting values into action are made easier and there is growing understanding about ALMA and its work in the local community as well as overseas. There are good opportunities to establish new local and global contacts, networks, partnerships which will enrich learning as well as the wider school community.
What difference could the opportunity for developing sustainable global partnerships through ALMA, to your school?
These opportunities are very important for all children – linking up with other places and people, learning about those people’s strengths and needs. This can promote global citizenship. Through a local project it is much more manageable and sustaining the links is made easier because you can build sustainable relationships.
How does RE with Soul’s approach meet your curriculum priorities and SDP?
RE with Soul enriches the ethos of the school, RE teaching and learning, Citizenship initiatives UNICEF – Rights of all children as well as Philosophy for children. Importantly though it is encompasses a values in action project so different components can be threaded through units of work across the curriculum.
How can the ALMA RE with Soul opportunity enrich enquiry-led RE teaching and learning?
The reflective elements are interwoven through all faith communities and people of no faith – empathy/compassion/responding etc and the values in action elements promote the positive action elements of all faith communities and also those people with no religious belief. Support/Kindness/Making a difference/ entitlement etc.
Why is RE with Soul different from other experiences of RE learning?
The emphasis on reflection and active compassion as opposed to knowledge and information. It offers CPD for teachers, learning through live overseas partnerships builds on good practice and further develops reflective questioning skills.
What does ‘soul’ in this context mean to you?
Individual human emotional response to dilemma /problems/need /understanding etc followed by an action that satisfies that response.
What aspects of RE with Soul approach support the development of theology literacy and critical thinking skills?
Engaging approach to exploring core Christian theology
Listening to the experiences of others from different faiths and none.
Witnessing the impact of positive actions.
Working in partnership with parents, faith leaders and communities locally and overseas, local artists
Project based learning.
Developing questioning skills
Problem solving and Deep thinking