‘I HAVE COME THAT YOU MIGHT HAVE LIFE AND HAVE IT TO THE FULL’
We are involved in Relationships and Sex Education precisely because of our Christian beliefs about God and about the human person. The belief in the unique dignity of the human person made in the image and likeness of God underpins the approach to all education in our school. Our approach to RSE therefore is rooted in the Catholic Church’s teaching of the human person and presented in a positive framework of Christian ideals.
At the heart of the Christian life is the Trinity, Father, Son and Spirit in communion, united in loving relationship and embracing all people and all creation. We teach the Christian belief that we are made in the image and likeness of God and that gender and sexuality are seen as God’s gift.
RSE is firmly embedded in the Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) education framework as it is concerned with nurturing human wholeness and integral to the physical, spiritual, emotional, moral, social and intellectual development of our pupils.
All RSE will be in accordance with the Church’s moral teaching. It will emphasise the central importance of marriage and the family. We will acknowledge and ensure that all our pupils are respected and treated as unique individuals in the eyes of God. We will respect the protected characteristics: age, disability, gender, race, religion, beliefs, sex, sexual orientation and ethnicity.
What does this look like at St Patrick's?
We teach RSE mainly through the Life to the Full programme devised by Ten:Ten. This is based on ‘A Model Catholic RSE Curriculum’ by the Catholic Education Service and has been highlighted as a work of good practice by the Department of Education.
Our RSE curriculum is a partnership between home, school and church and we aim to work in partnership so that our children are fully supported in their growth and understanding.
Our lessons are taught through creative resources that will engage, inform and inspire our children and parents. Our teaching includes the use of interactive video content, story-based activities, worship , music and accompanying prayers.
Our RSE curriculum is developmental and as children work through the programme, year-after-year, each stage builds on previous learning. Each module is taught and is explored at an age appropriate level. Within these modules there are units and these units will be visited twice in each Key Stage to recap and consolidate understanding.
Module One: Created and Loved by God
Created and Loved by God explores the individual. Rooted in the teaching that we are made in the image and likeness of God, it helps children to develop an understanding of the importance of valuing themselves as the basis for personal relationships.
In these sessions, we explore:
Children are introduced to the story of creation and they creatively explore that they are created by God out of love and for love. In ‘Me, My Body, My Health’, children will learn about their uniqueness in real terms, including celebrating differences and individual gifts, talents and abilities. In Emotional Well-Being, children will learn about likes, dislikes and self-acceptance. They will learn that actions have consequences; that when we make mistakes we should say sorry and ask for forgiveness.
Key Stage One (Y1 and Y2)
Children learn that we are uniquely made by a loving God, that we have differences and similarities (including physical differences between boys and girls), key information about staying physically healthy, understanding feelings and emotions, including strong feelings such as anger, and the cycle of life from birth to old age.
Lower Key Stage Two (Y3 and Y4)
Children develop their understanding of differences, respecting our bodies, puberty and changing bodies. There will be strategies to support emotional wellbeing including practicing thankfulness, and the development of pupils understanding of life before birth.
Upper Key Stage Two (Y5 and Y6)
Children learn to appreciate physical and emotional differences, a more complex understanding of physical changes in girl and boys bodies, body image, strong emotional feelings, the impact of the internet and social media on emotional well-being, a more nuanced and scientific understanding of life in the womb and how babies are made, and menstruation.
Module Two: Created to Love Others
This module explores the individual’s relationship with others. Building on the understanding that we have been created out of love and for love, this unit explores how we take this calling into our family, friendships and relationships, and teaches strategies for developing healthy relationships and keeping safe.
This religious understanding is then applied to real-world situations relevant to the age and stage of the children:
Children are taught that Jesus loves us and is a role model for us to copy in loving one another. In ‘Personal Relationships’ , children will expand their vocabulary by applying names to different family/friend relationships, consider positive/negative behaviour in relationships and learn to look to Jesus as their role model for a good friend. In ‘Keeping Safe’, children learn practical ways to stay safe inside and out, about bodily privacy (including the NSPCC PANTS message that ‘pants are private’) and the importance of talking to their ‘special people’ if anything troubles them.
Key Stage One
Children are taught to identify the Special People in their lives who they love and can trust, how to cope with various social situations and dilemmas, and the importance of saying sorry and forgiveness within relationships. In the unit ‘Keeping Safe’, we explore the risks of being online by incorporating resources such as the ‘Smartie The Penguin' from ‘Childnet‘ , the difference between good and bad secrets, and teaching on physical boundaries (incorporating the PANTS resource from the NSPCC ).
Lower Key Stage Two
The sessions here help children to develop a more complex appreciation of different family structures and there are activities and strategies to help them develop healthy relationships with family and friends; here, they are also taught simple techniques for managing thoughts, feelings and actions.
Upper Key Stage Two
Children are equipped with strategies for more complex experiences of relationships and conflict; this includes sessions that help children to identify and understand how to respond to spoken and unspoken pressure, the concept of consent and some practical demonstrations of this, and further teaching on how our thoughts and feelings have an impact on how we act.
Module Three: Created to Live in Community
Finally, Module Three: Created to Live in Community explores the individual’s relationship with the wider world. Here we explore how human beings are relational by nature and are called to love others in the wider community through service, through dialogue and through working for the Common Good. The children apply this religious understanding to real-world situations, such as the community we live in, and through exploring the work of charities which work for the Common Good.
Please note that parents will notified by email when sensitive content is going to be taught so that this can be discussed and prepared for at home.