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A pupil’s personal development

Academic rigour and personal development

At the heart of this resource is the intention to increase the academic rigour of the teaching of Christianity, so that pupils gain an informed understanding, contributing to their religious literacy. However, this understanding is not limited to collecting information. Any real understanding of people’s beliefs, practices and ways of living will affect the personal development of the pupil. Academic rigour and religious literacy are not just cognitive: they have an impact on the pupil’s understanding of themselves and the world.

The key purpose of these materials is to support pupils in developing their understanding of Christianity, as a contribution to their understanding of the world and their own experience within it.

The intention is that the exploration of Christian concepts, texts and practices develops pupils’ understanding. The elements of the approach (making sense, understanding impact and making connections) involve pupils understanding how Christians interpret and apply texts and beliefs. This also develops pupils’ own abilities to interpret, apply and consider implications for themselves – skills which apply beyond the study of Christianity. This ‘theological literacy’ also contributes to a wider religious literacy as part of RE.

Contributing to wider educational purposes:

The resources and approach make a contribution to wider school priorities, including:

  • Spiritual, moral, social and cultural development
  • Promoting British Values and handling diversity, specifically through developing pupils’ skills in interpreting texts and handling controversy
  • Developing values, character and virtues, in particular the intellectual virtues of becoming ‘virtuous readers’.  (More detail of this, and its origins in the work of Kevin J Vanhoozer and Richard S Briggs can be found in the Teacher’s Handbook.)