At Marshfield School we uphold and teach pupils about British Values which are defined as:
- the rule of law
- individual liberty
- mutual respect
- tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs
We teach these British values through planning a broad and balanced curriculum that includes Religious Education and a whole school approach to teaching and understanding our school Values for Life which are promoted through assemblies, collective worship and class discussion. Children displaying these values in their everyday life are nominated by their peer group at our weekly Celebration Service to receive our special Citizenship Cup.
The school takes part in community events such as the Remembrance Day Service at the War Memorial and the Village May Fair celebrations when pupils dance the traditional May Pole dances. As a school we are committed to heightening pupils’ awareness of the work of different charities and this year we have raised money for Save the Children Fund, Guide Dogs, The Royal British Legion and Children in Need.
In order to reflect the democratic values of our society, we encourage pupils to value and listen to the opinions of others. One way in which we actively encourage this is through our School Council which is made up of two pupils from each class who have been nominated by their peers to represent their views and ideas. For example, this year the School Council has been responsible for the design of the new junior agility equipment and for the introduction of napkins in the school lunch hall.
The Rule of law:
The importance of laws and rules, whether they are those that govern the class, the school or the country, are consistently reinforced. At the start of each academic year each class discusses and agrees a set of class rules which run alongside the school’s Golden Rules. Pupils are taught that community cohesion and personal responsibility are secured through rules and laws in our society, that they are concerned with our safety and that there are consequences when they are broken.
Pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. The school follows the ‘Successful Learners’ initiative which actively encourages pupils to think about how they can improve their learning by making sensible choices in their learning behaviours. These choices are discussed and displayed in the classrooms. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and are advised how to exercise these safely, for example, through our e-safety teaching and parental information workshops. Pupils are given the freedom to make choices, for example, by signing up for extra-curricular clubs, choosing the level of challenge in their learning and making choices about what they eat.
Throughout the school the classes are named after Olympic host cities (Atlanta, Sydney, Athens, Beijing, London and Rio). The Olympic motto of Citius – Altius – Fortius (faster, higher, stronger) is shared and promoted with the children through our school teams names. The motto reminds the children about being the best they can be morally, socially and educationally competing with themselves to be the best they can be, always striving to improve.
Our school values are an integral part of our school ethos and behaviour in our school and the wider community. We expect all members of the school community to uphold these Values for Life and reward good examples and challenge disrespectful behaviour.
Tolerance of Those of Different Faiths or Beliefs:
This is achieved through enhancing pupils’ understanding of their place in a culturally diverse society and by giving them opportunities to learn about and discuss different faiths and beliefs. We follow the locally agreed South Gloucestershire RE syllabus (SACRE), which covers all the major faiths. We also look for opportunities to explore the celebrations of other faiths and to discuss their similarities to the Christian faith, for example, a whole school Diwali Assembly looked at the way light is important and within their classes pupils explored the importance of light in other major faiths.
In order to expand the pupils’ first-hand experience of other cultures representatives of the Traveller/Roma, Indian and Somali communities of Bristol have led workshops, organised by the Bristol hate crime charity, Stand Against Racism and Inequality (Sari).
Knowledge and Understanding of the World has been identified by the school as a key driver of the School Curriculum and is therefore a focus when planning cross-curricular themes for each year group.
Examples of how British Values are being taught in the curriculum this year.
In the Foundation Stage we aim to provide the pupils with a broad and balanced curriculum, in which they feel valued, respected and able to reach their full potential. At the beginning of the year we discuss and make class rules that enable them to stay safe and show respect for each other and the school environment.
Through a combination of adult led and child initiated activities, children learn the value of individual liberty and the importance of making ‘good choices’.
During our ‘Celebrations’ topic, pupils are taught about the similarities and differences between different faiths and cultures.
We also have our ‘All About Me’ box which each child will take home and fill with items that reflect their home cultures. They then have a chance to share this box with the class; talking about their own family traditions, discuss their likes and dislikes openly, fostering tolerance and mutual respect.
In Sydney class the children continue to learn about the importance of individual liberty; we encourage independence and responsibility in all aspects of school life and the curriculum. This can be seen in a variety of everyday processes in our classroom; from the simple act of taking responsibility for their own reading books and homework books to the more collaborative responsibilities, such as being a fruit monitor or monitoring that the book corner is kept tidy.
We provide a safe learning environment for the children, and through periodic circle time we hold democratic discussions about what kindness and mutual respect look like – engaging the children in considering their actions and the actions of others. This year we joined with Athens class in celebrating ‘World Religion Day’. The children were encouraged to think about other people’s faiths and beliefs. After exploring a variety of artefacts from other cultures and faiths they created responses through Art, which were shared with Athens class and via our Twitter account.
The children in Sydney class understand the importance of the rule of law and how this relates to them in their everyday lives. At the beginning of the year we make a set of class rules together, which are then referred back to as a reminder of the agreement we have made with each other for our safety and to further our learning in a safe and stimulating way.
During the very first week of the new school year, the children are involved in a range of activities and discussions geared towards the principles of the ‘Successful Learners’ initiative. Class three thought carefully about what it meant to be successful in their own independent learning and how they can take greater ownership over their own progress; socially, emotionally and academically. They are also fully involved in creating their own classroom promise; a fair set of rules which the whole class is in agreement with.
The children have a great deal of mutual respect for each other, this is evident in weekly celebration assemblies where they often nominate their peers for displaying acts of kindness linked to the school values. When disagreements do occur, they are supported in talking through their problems, sharing their concern, listening to the concerns of others and arriving at their own solution.
The children are actively encouraged to make their own choices. They often choose who they will work with, and are encouraged to make these choices for themselves whilst also considering the impact on their own learning. During maths and English lessons, the children are given the freedom to choose their own level of learning, based on carefully planned and differentiated success steps. They are consistently supported in reflecting on their own, and others learning through self and peer assessment and making suggestions for future developments.
There have been many opportunities throughout the year for children to consider faiths and beliefs different to their own. They took part in a wide range of activities linked to the Hindu festival of Diwali and have recently had the opportunity to engage in ‘World Religion Day’, where they explored a range of different artefacts from other cultures and responded to these through art.
Using our class name as a starting point the children learn about the city of Beijing. The children discuss and explore the similarities and differences in cultures and traditions through class topic work. The children also learn about the Beijing Olympics focusing on democracy, the rule of law, mutual respect and tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs and how these are upheld through the Olympic motto Citius – Altius – Fortius (faster, higher, stronger).
In term 2 under the topic title The Romans, the children explore how the Romans ruled and the impact for us today. In PSHE lessons the children hold debates carefully thinking about the impact decisions have on everyone in society. In R.E. lessons children explore all the major faiths of the world through discussion, visits, artifacts, role play and sacred texts.
In term 3 and 4 the children explore and compare diets of the world through their topic Healthy Me. They look at the significance of special foods in diets and choices people make, developing an understanding that we are all special and all different.
The classroom is a shared learning environment where the children are encouraged to take responsibility for the space through class jobs and awareness of others. The children in Beijing take responsibility for ringing the bell at the end of play and lunch times understanding the importance of working together as school. A reward system called Class Dojo is used in Beijing by the children and adults, children are encouraged to nominate each other for points when they have seen a positive behaviour.
During terms one and two, London Class studied the ancient Egyptians. We found out about their creation story and how the Gods were created and ruled. This included looking in detail at the story of Isis, Osiris and Seth- a story of power, jealousy and treachery. Included in this study were discussions on equality and whether everybody should be treated equally.
Also in term one we read a book called ‘There’s a Boy in the Girls’ Bathroom’ , by Louis Sachar. The hilarious story of a boy, Bradley Chalkers, who finds school and friendships difficult. It helped us learn about our differences and how we must respect these differences.
In RE the class have found out about sacred texts of different religions; with a real focus on the Bible. In particular we read and discussed the two parables- ‘The Workers in the Vineyard’ (Matthew 20:1-16) and ‘The Good Samaritan’ Luke 10:25-37. From these stories the children discussed the importance of tolerance of those of different faiths or beliefs and how we should respect individual liberty. We undertook drama workshops, conscience alley activities and letter writing to help extend our learning.
As part of our Earth and Space theme London will be reading Weslandia, by Paul Fleischman. It is about a boy who learns that all civilizations need a staple food crop and so decides to sow a garden and start his own. This will lead to discussions and learning on the importance of democracy and the rule of law!
During the final part of the year, London will be focusing on the classic series of books ‘Just Willliam’ (Richmal Crompton), about the protagonist William Brown and his gang- The Outlaws. Where does the word ‘outlaw’ come from and why is it important to have The Rule of Law?
Class six children spent terms one and two comparing the lives of people in South America with their own in the UK, with a key focus on geographical differences. Through the study of ancient Maya civilization, they looked at a non-European society that contrasts with British history.
As a part of Harvest festival, the children explored the scale and economic importance of the British fishing industry.
We attended a Life Skills training course which helped the children develop a sense of responsibility as British citizens, and taught them how to act in an emergency.
In RE during terms one and two, children explored how people from a range of faiths worshipped in Britain express their religious beliefs. Throughout terms three and four, they have investigated how families from these backgrounds celebrate key moments in their lives.
In English , children have been studying William Shakespeare’s Hamlet. As well as discussing the plot and characters, they have explored Shakespeare’s celebrated use of language, and have researched and used archaic English vocabulary.
In terms five and six, class six’s creative curriculum theme will be ‘Marshfield and Me’. The children will investigate the impact that growing up in the local community has had on them, and reflect upon their time at Marshfield School as the year six children prepare to leave. Local historical and geographical studies will be undertaken, and the children will attend a day focussed on farming and the British countryside at the local Badminton estate.
In science during terms five and six, in addition to the school’s on-going sex education programme, children will learn more about the effects of diet, exercise and drugs on the body, enabling them to make informed lifestyle decisions as they grow older.
Camp week will take us to Mill on the Brue. The children will be encountering a range of exciting experiences, pushing outside of their comfort zones, both individually and as part of a team. For many children, this will be the longest period of time they have spent away from home, helping them gain independence and develop their social skills.