When teaching British Values at St Mary’s, we intend to provide a relevant and progressive curriculum which caters for the needs of all individuals. We embed the fundamentals of British Values within our own Catholic Virtues. Through the teachings of the Bible and the morals behind these, the children can articulate and implement these British Values into their daily lives. Through purposeful links to the wider world and their own personal and social experiences, children are exposed to the core of British Values at St Mary’s.
At our school, we establish these links with a cross curricular approach establishing a strong link to the PSHE and citizenship aspect of the curriculum. St Mary’s Catholic Primary Academy have five curriculum drivers which provide the foundations for learning. These drivers are Aspiration, Communication, Healthy Lifestyles, Community and Knowledge of the World. The teaching of British Values are embedded within these areas to provide a broad and balanced curriculum that is geared to the pupils of St Mary’s and reflects their lives.
Democracy, mutual respect, tolerance and individual liberty are British Values that are easily accessed through class discussion. Turn taking, expressing their own ideas whilst also valuing and showing respect to one another’s beliefs are promoted by the class teacher and easily adapted into their daily routines. Children that are happy and free to express themselves will have healthy lifestyles and good communication skills showing how these drivers are integral to everything we do at St Mary’s.
Pupils of St Mary’s reflect the Catholic virtues of our school by looking out for people in their community, especially during the season of Advent and Lent when they donate food to people less fortunate than themselves. This selfless act shows a great knowledge of the world around them and how they can best serve their community.
Here are some of the recommendations suggested through the National Curriculum (2014) that we, at St Mary’s, have acted upon to help promote the use of British Values throughout our curriculum and wider-learning.
- ‘Include in suitable parts of the curriculum material on the strengths, advantages and disadvantages of democracy, and how democracy and the law works in Britain, in contrast to other forms of government in other countries.’ And ‘Use opportunities such as general or local elections to hold mock elections to promote fundamental British values and provide pupils with the opportunity to learn how to argue and defend points of view.’ At St Mary’s we make worldwide events such as the General Election accessible and real to the children within a school context. We have had mock elections based on these events. Due to the Catholic ethos of our school, we regularly compare and question the moral impacts that these decisions have.
- ‘Ensure all pupils within the school have a voice that is listened to, and demonstrate how democracy works by actively promoting democratic processes such as a school council whose members are voted for by the pupils.’ Throughout school life, children are provided with opportunities for responsibilities as they move through schools whether these are House Captains, RE Ambassadors, Play Leaders or Digital Ambassadors. All of these roles are decided through democratic votes following the children delivering their own persuasive speeches in an MP style.
- ‘Consider the role of extra-curricular activity, including any run directly by pupils, in promoting fundamental British values.’ The teachings of mutual respect are deeply rooted within the Catholic life of the school and children are encouraged to be selfless in their actions towards others. The charity work undertaken by St Mary’s shows the care and respect that we have for one another regardless of race, religion or other factors. This is also in line with God’s commandment to love one another as I have loved you.
The impact our curriculum has on our children:
- Children will leave St Mary’s with an open minded approach and attitude to the outside world. The values they have learnt will prove instrumental in their personal and professional development.
- Through British Values teachings, children have the freedom to express and share what they are curious about whilst knowing they are in a safe environment.
- Children of all abilities and backgrounds are included and engaged in British Values to better understand the world we live in and the skills they will need in later life.
- Clear progression and transference of life skills.
- Children will be accepting of all people and promote the inclusive attitudes that are embedded into the School’s ethos.
- Children will be able to articulate what each British Value means and what it looks like. Children are already showing confidence in this by showcasing their own class assemblies based on a British Value and bringing each value to life and the forefront of not only their minds, but also their peers.
- Children will gain leadership qualities and a positive mental attitude from being able to express themselves and being accepted for this.
- Fundamental British Values are evident in all areas of the school curriculum and will be encountered and accessed as part of daily classroom routines. The ultimate aim for British Values is that children will be using and applying them without even realising this as these values will become part of their day to day life.
British Values Documents
Please view our PSHE page for additional information here.
Please view the additional documents in school:
- British Values Vocabulary Progression
- British Values Knowledge Organisers