Dr Francis Farrell: Pedagogy in Practice 16.2.18

To help support their development as RE academics and written assignments, trainees were treated to a session by  Dr Francis Farrell (previous RE Course Leader) unpicking some of the pedagogical theory which underpins Outstanding RE. After some much needed experiential stilling and silent meditation, trainees considered the use of video clips to explore a phenomenological approach before considering ‘Does God play dice with the universe?’ to illustrate a critical realist approach to T&L. A useful and enjoyable session –  Always fab to have ‘Mr RE’ back in the classroom!

PGCE RE T&L Showcase 9.2.18

Trainees on the PGCE took the opportunity to share some good practice and celebrate their successful T&L strategies with the group as they approach the end of their first placement. Whilst Andy subjected us all to his pie-puns to discuss a numeracy strategy, Becky presented an ‘FBI: Confidential’ task for investigating the miracles of Jesus, Rosemina wowed us all with her WAGOLLs and Amy flashed the cash with ‘RE Millionaires’. In addition to some fab  ideas from Morgan, Lauren and Becky, everyone was able to steal some great ideas to use for PP2. Well done team!

Ruth Taylor (Burnley High School): Teaching GCSE RE 26.1.18

One of our fantastic Curriculum Mentors (and Ex-Edge Hill alumni!), Ruth Taylor from Burnley Hugh School, delivered an effective and engaging session for PGCE students on teaching GCSE RS. Using her own experiences of delivering the new Edxcel RS curriculum, Ruth was able to give practical strategies on differentiating, planning and assessment in GCSE RS. Trainees also got an opportunity to plan their own RE curriculum, thinking about the importance of embedding skills and content in KS3 for KS4 study.  Thanks Ruth, you’re welcome back anytime! 🙂 

NATRE Conference 2017 at Edge Hill

On Wednesday, Editor of RE Today magazine and NATRE representative  Lat Blaylock delivered an outstanding and engaging conference for UG and PG ITT trainees entitled ‘RE for All: Entitlement and Opportunity’.  As current PGCE students,  we found the  day to be extremely informative and enjoyable. Lat discussed and demonstrated activities which we could use in the classroom to help engage pupils which we found particularly useful and which encouraged use to think about what ‘good’ RE looks like. It was a thoroughly enjoyable day and we thank Lat for making it possible 🙂 – Catherine Agnew & Rebecca Eiffe-Harvey (EHU PGCE trainees)

Teaching RE from a faith perspective

We had a great session on Friday. Becky Scott, Head of RE at the Academy of St Nicholas and Curriculum Mentor, came to speak to us about teaching topics we may be uncomfortable with if we come from a faith or hold strong personal views. She spoke  about her own experience playing the devil’s advocate for topics she may not agree with as a devout and born again Christian, such as abortion. It was a good insight for me personally, as a born again Christian myself, because even though we both know Jesus, we still seemingly had varying opinions on certain topics. The session was a good reminder for me that some topics are just a reality of teaching Religious Education and are unavoidable. It’s not necessarily about trying to avoid them even, but more so how to teach them in a way that is respectful to my faith, but also the students’ learning journey – Kieron Riley, PGCE RE Trainee

Behaviour for Learning at Stretford High

Stretford High put on a great session for trainees today, looking at the importance Behaviour for Learning in the classroom. After a talk about the importance of ‘owning your zone’, trainees got a chance to speak to the Head of Year 7 about the school behaviour policy before meeting with some fantastic year 11 students and getting their views on what makes an effective lesson and what good RE looks like. The afternoon was finished off with an invaluable session with the Headteacher where they were given a step-by-step plan of how to get a job! Thanks Stretford 🙂

Penwortham Girls High School: Humanities Conference 2017

Last week trainees took full advantage of a fab CPD conference at Penwortham Girls High, one of our Outstanding partnership schools. They attended sessions on the new KS4 curriculum, looked at engagement and challenge in KS3, met with the team from AQA Religious Studies and spoke with other Humanities colleagues about progression and ‘getting ahead’ in their career. A fantastic opportunity for all – thanks Penwortham!

BA (Hons) Education & Religion – The Island

Today we started teaching on our new BA (Hons) Education and Religion! Using Sue Philips’ ‘Theatre of Learning’, the group experienced being stranded on a desert island after a plane crash (inspired by Lost!) and had to work in their tribes to consider and create rites of passage, sacred places, sacred texts and guidelines to live by. An experiential start to the course!


RE PGCE: Professionalism conference at Cowley International College

Prior to starting their first placement, PGCE trainees attended a professionalism conference at one of our partnership schools, Cowley International College in St Helens. Led by the fantastic PM Sue Reed, trainees considered what it means to be professional and chatted with the Principle and Vice-Principle about issues such as social media, attendance and professional expectations. They got to meet the ‘RE ambassadors’ from year 10 and get some inside information on what they think  makes a good RE lesson before speaking to ex-Edge Hill alumni about surviving your PGCE and NQT year. A lovely end to a very intense 3 weeks! Thanks Cowley!