Religious Education at Fairfields

At Fairfields Primary School we use the agreed syllabus for religious education (RE) in Hampshire, the Isle of Wight, Portsmouth and Southampton which is called Living Difference IV.

We have chosen our RE syllabus as it delivers the messages threaded through our vision and mission:

To prepare the children of today to thrive and meet the challenges of tomorrow, by developing independence and resilience through a forward thinking and evolving curriculum, proudly reflecting our diverse community, inspiring and celebrating all achievements.  


We are a vibrant, diverse and inclusive community, fostering a culture of learning and resilience, through a creative and pupil-centered curriculum where children are encouraged to take risks and learn from their mistakes, all within a supportive environment. 

Pupils at our school engage in learning about other cultures and religions as a way of developing their understanding of the world and the community they are part of.  


About Living Difference IV

Informed by current educational research, as well as research into religion and worldviews, it builds on the approach to religious education used in Hampshire, Portsmouth and Southampton since 2004. The fourth revision demonstrates the ongoing and fruitful partnership that exists between the four authorities, ensuring a syllabus capable of securing high-quality religious education for all children and young people who encounter it, at this point in history.


To view the Living Difference IV Agreed Syllabus and for more information about the syllabus  – please follow this link:




  • to support children in developing their own coherent patterns of values and principles, and to support their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.
  • to foster mutual understanding between pupils of differing religions
  • to interpret and respond to a variety of concepts, beliefs and practices within religions and to their own and others’ cultural and life experiences.
  • to encourage the development of concepts outlined in the County recommended syllabus Living Difference.
  • to interpret, evaluate and respond to differing values and beliefs.



  • We use the Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education, Living Difference IV developed by Hampshire as the basis for our curriculum.
  • At Fairfields Primary school, it has been agreed that having taken into account the requirements and guidelines presented in the Agreed Syllabus, the following religions have been selected for study: Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism and Islam. These religions reflect the majority of our pupils’ religious practices.
  • Christianity will be studied every year. Hinduism is studied in KS1 (as Hinduism is the second biggest religion in our school so is the second religion our pupils may be most familiar with) Judaism is studied in lower Key Stage 2 (Year 3 and 4) and Islam is studied in upper Key Stage 2 (Year 5 and 6).
  • Each half term children study one unit of R.E. These units are planned to ensure there is a breadth and variety across the school. Each unit has a focus: A concepts- examples of concepts common to all people, B concepts- examples of concepts shared by many religions or C concepts- examples of concepts distinctive to particular religions.
  • E. is taught for 36 hours per year at Key Stage 1 and 45 hours per year at Key Stage 2.
  • E. teaching is explicit with its own clear and coherent scheme of work and is taught as a blocked unit of work over a number of afternoons for one whole week. This is undertaken in the last week of each half term.
  • There are no presumptions made as to the religious backgrounds and beliefs and values of the children and the staff.  We value the religious background of all members of the school community and hope that this will encourage individuals to share their own experiences with others freely.  All religions and their communities are treated with respect and sensitivity and we value the links, which are, and can be made between home, school, and a faith community.  We are extremely fortunate that Open the Book regularly visit our school to carry out assemblies and teach as part of the R.E. curriculum.
  • We acknowledge that each religion studied can contribute to the education of all our pupils.  We promote teaching in Religious Education that stresses open enquiry and first-hand experiences wherever possible for both staff and children. 



  • The children at Fairfields Primary School enjoy learning about other religions and why people choose, or choose not, to follow a religion.
  • Through their R.E. learning, the children are able to make links between their own lives and those of others in their community and in the wider world, developing an understanding of other people’s cultures and ways of life. As such, R.E. is invaluable in an ever changing and shrinking world.


Fairfields Primary School RE Curriculum Overview

  • Key Stage 1 focus on the religions of Christianity and Hinduism


36 Hours




Foundation Stage


(settling in time)

Celebration: Celebrating birth- Christmas and Jesus’s birth


Special People- Jesus

Symbol of New Life-

Eggs as a sign of new life

Special: Special clothes

Special Things


Year 1

Sacred Places


Journey’s End:

Nativity Journeys

Good and Evil



Palm Sunday

Message: Jesus’s teachings and messages


Raksha Bandhan

Year 2



Light as a Symbol:

Advent and Diwali


Making Choices


Sadness to Happiness: The Easter Story


Hindu Worship



Trees as a Symbol



  • Key Stage 2 focus on the religions of Christianity, Judaism and Islam


45 Hours




Year 3



Harvest and Sukkot










Key Events of Holy Week



Key Events in Jesus’s Life



Special Places


Year 4



Special Books- the Bible and the Torah




Mary, Mother of God



People Jesus Met



Paschal candle


Creation: Creation stories from the major religions



God: Judaism and Christianity

Year 5



Shahada and salat


Christmas- the two birth narratives


Stewardship: Creation


Symbol: The Eucharist

Sacred Places


Places of Worship




Year 6


Death Ceremonies


The Magi


Ramadan and Eid-ul-Fitr


The Empty Cross

Jesus as divine (God incarnate):

Miracle stories about Jesus


Rites of Passage: The Journey of Life


Parental right to withdraw children from RE

A parent of a pupil at a maintained school can request that their child is wholly or partly excused from:

  • Receiving RE given in the school in accordance with the school’s basic curriculum
  • Attendance at religious worship in the school

The school must grant such requests.

The right of parents to withdraw their children from religious education (RE) lessons is set out in section 71(1) of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998, in paragraph 1.

 School Standards and Framework Act 1998: regulation 71,


Additional Religious Educational Opportunities

At Fairfields we aim to reflect the diverse make up of our school population and to give children the opportunity to practise and share their different faiths.

Section 70 of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998 stipulates that pupils of community, foundation or voluntary schools in England and Wales must take part in a daily act of Collective Worship, unless they have been explicitly withdrawn by their parents. In line with government guidelines we provide collective worship through our daily assemblies.


Friday Prayer

As we have a sizeable Muslim population we offer a Friday prayer session on Fridays afternoons. This was previously guided by an imam and is now pupil led with support from our Foundation stage LSA Mrs Elsayed who also plans the content of the sessions. If you would like your child to attend these sessions please ensure that you have completed the google form found here.


Throughout the year the RE coordinator plans in opportunities to come together as a school and celebrate key religious festivals from the major religions. These usually include performances and activities linked to the event. These events are open to all and widely attended by our community. The festivals celebrated in previous years have included Harvest, Christmas, Easter Diwali, Holi, Eid-al-Fitr and Lunar New Year (secular).

To read our RE Policy click here.