At Great Hucklow CE (VC) Primary, we are aware that our rural catchment means that ethnic diversity isn't something most of our children have much opportunity to experience. As a result we ensure our curriculum has the breadth and depth to allow the children to develop their awareness of other cultures and religions. R.E. Days focus on Christianity and also on the other major world religions. Our children recognise the importance of RE in their lives as they reflect on themselves and others around them. We ask questions about Christianity and other religions and particularly focus on the similarities between them, rather than the differences. We have visited Hindu temples and Sikh gurdwaras.
We have explored the Hindu festival of Diwali and one of our RE days about Islam had a focus on Islamic places of Worship and the 5 Pillars of Islam. A day studying Judiasm involved looking at symbols resulting in what symbols would we use to represent the love and warmth in our school community. We spend time in Collective Worship and PSHE reflecting on our good fortune compared to many others around the world.
Daily collective worship teaches the traditional shared values of empathy, tolerance and respect. These are also taught in a classroom setting in PSHE lessons and informally throughout the school day.
We recently visited the Open Centre in Derby and the children had a fantastic time exploring the different places of worship and finding out about different religions. We recently learned all about kite flying around the world as part of our work around diversity and awareness of other cultures. The children all learned about some of the different countries around the world that fly kites for sport such as Afghanistan, Syria and Thailand.
We believe that the British values of tolerance and respect are ones which should be demonstrated by all staff and children and taught actively by being embedded in the curriculum. Our work about World War 1 allowed the children to comprehend the impact of the war and to discuss the centenary commemorations with real understanding. Our reading of the book Hugo allowed us to explore what it must be like to be alone without a family. A recent in-depth study of the incredible expedition of Ernest Shackleton meant that lengthy discussions were held about heroism and bravery.
Our weekly visits to the woods mean that the children have to work as a team, carrying equipment, sharing out juice and biscuits, playing and working together in an environment out of the school classroom and playground. There are high expectations of behaviour in this more informal setting and the children clearly enjoy managing themselves. The woods allow the children to connect with nature, to experience the awe and wonder of the natural world and to treasure what is on our doorstep.
We receive the weekly newspaper First News and discuss national and global events in class. This allows us to stay in touch with the rest of the world and to realise how important it is to engage with it. Our topics in geography, history and English have a global dimension, which allow us to engage with other countries around the world and other cultures, both nationally and internationally. For example, the book 'Journey to Jo'burg' by Beverley Naidoo allowed us to study South Africa and apartheid in detail, and in geography we learned all about Bangladesh. We studied the physical and human elements of the country and it allowed us to understand migration and its benefits.
The year 6 children are appointed as ministers with areas of responsibility and parliaments are often held within school. This allows us to hold frequent discussions about the power of democracy and the rule of law. Any local or general election or referendum allows us to study our country's voting system in detail. A recent trip to the Polling Station gave the children the opportunity to see democracy in action. The actual room to vote in is quite small so a few of the children went in, asked lots of questions and looked at the ballot box and booths. They then went back and reported their findings to the rest of the class.