Religious Education

Rationale:

As members of St Mary’s School community, we recognise Jesus Christ as the centre of our lives and the integrating influence of our school community.

We acknowledge our responsibility, in partnership with parents to provide a holistic religious education for all children- paying specific attention to our school’s dominant Catholic context. We also acknowledge the diversity of faith backgrounds within our school and our responsibility to provide programs that are respectful and inclusive of all.

Goals:‘Enhanced understanding’ is the primary goal of Religious Education. Students are supported to develop a richer understanding of their own faith and the faiths of others through a structured classroom program which is based upon a contemporary model of inquiry learning.  

Through our Religious Education program, students will:

  • Appreciate that through Jesus Christ, the one God has been revealed to us as the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
  • Experience a deeper knowledge of Jesus Christ through Sacraments, Scripture and Tradition.
  • Be encouraged to be open  to God through personal prayer.
  • Grow in appreciation of the beauty, unity and interdependence of God’s creation.
  • Recognise and respond to personal and social challenges through the Commandments and the Beatitudes.
  • Appreciate that God, the Holy Spirit is at work in the Church, Creation and their daily lives.
  • Reflect on the scriptural story of the Church and to share in its life and mission.
  • Enhance their identity and wholeness through the example of Mary as the model of faithful discipleship
  • Discover that sacred liturgy reflects the essence of their lives and is a unique expression of our communion with God
  • Understand that each individual is unique and made in the image of God
  • Understand that through the grace of God and BY faithfully responding to Christ's call, they can receive eternal happiness in the life to come
  • Understand and respect the rituals, traditions and beliefs of the world’s major Religions and identify, respect and celebrate the similarities that exist.

Implementation:

Formation in faith is a life-long journey. Students change and develop over time and a variety of approaches are employed to support students and their families to come to a richer understanding of what it means to be a part of a Catholic community.

The content of our Religious Education program is structured upon the Religious Education Curriculum Framework document used throughout the Archdiocese of Melbourne .and across Victoria. The curriculum schema is supported by the ‘To Know, Worship and Love’ textbooks that have been specifically developed to support students and families strengthen their knowledge and understanding of the Catholic faith. The schema identifies three key dimensions through which student learning is achieved:

Knowledge and Understanding, Reasoning and Responding and Personal and Communal Engagement.

Within the Religious Education Frameworks document. the major thematic units include:
  • God
  • Creation
  • Human person and the Family
  • Jesus Christ
  • The Holy Spirit
  • The Church
  • Mary, Mother of God, and the Saints
  • Liturgy/Seasons and Celebrations
  • Sacraments
  • Sacred Stories
  • Grace and Moral Life
  • Prayer
  • Commandments and Beatitudes
  • Death and Everlasting Life

The selection and composition of units of work will take into account the Seasons of the Church Year, Sacramental preparation within the school, feast days, specific school celebrations and the Integrated curriculum.

Assessment practices are to be inclusive of all, and reflect assessment for learning, assessment as learning, and assessment of learning. Student and collegial evaluation of units of study, suitability of resources and learning experiences offered is an important element within our Religious Education program.  Evidence of growth and learning is gathered through a variety of modes such as:

  • Targeted student observation
  • Anecdotal notes
  • Annotated student work books or work samples
  • Teacher prepared assessment tasks (individual & level, pre and post)
  • Graphic organisers
  • Formal reports
  • Open-ended questions
  • Class/Group discussions
  • Oral reporting
  • Preparation of liturgies
  • Personal response to and analysis of scripture
  • Dramatic improvisation
  • Multimedia presentations