Worship and our Christian Values

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Our Christian Values

At St. Mary’s, we know that ’with God all things are possible’ (Matthew 19:26) and everything we do is underpinned by our core Christian values of Creativity, Perseverance, Love, Respect and Forgiveness.

Our approach to collective worship is based upon Values for Life Christian values of:
Compassion, Courage, Trust, Forgiveness, Friendship, Thankfulness, Wisdom, Peace, Generosity, Creativity, Service, Truthfulness, Respect, Perseverance, Hope, Humility, Justice, Responsibility

Each term Year 6 choose one of the above values as our focus for Worship and reflection. Through these values, daily acts of collective worship are planned to give everyone a variety of experiences to develop spirituality through reflection, as well as an understanding of Christianity and aspects of other faiths and cultures.

The experiences include involving children in sharing relevant stories from the Bible, images, drama, poetry, prayers, music, audio visual and singing.They enable us to reflect on and respond to things which we, as a school community, believe are important in preparing children to be responsible citizens now and in the future.

Our worship is structured as follows and provides children with the opportunity to worship in different groups and at different times of the day:

Monday – Whole School Worship

Tuesday – Key Stage Worship

Wednesday – Class based Worship

Thursday – Reflection and Prayer

Friday – Celebration Worship/ End of day reflection and prayer.

Worship is led by a range of school staff and visiting clergy from St. Mary’s Church.
Parents and friends are invited to join us for services in the church or in school.

What does worship mean to us?

Year 6 thought carefully about what worship means to them and how we approach it at St. Mary’s and together the below mind map was created.

Their independent thoughts and ideas during the discussion were both reflective and considered all elements of how we communicate with God through prayer and worship.

Worship Policy

Members of our School Council will be joining parents and carers in the playground at the end of a school day soon. They will be armed with clipboards containing a questionnaire to find out what parents’ and carers’ views are about Religious Education and Worship at St. Mary’s. If you would prefer to complete a questionnaire electronically, please follow the link below…

RE and Worship Parent Questionnaire (blank)

Here is a copy of the questionnaire that was completed a little while ago.

Please take a look at the results here:R.E. and Worship Parent Questionnaire feedback

If you would like to download a blank questionnaire to fill in, please do so below as we always value your views and opinions. You can hand it into the office at anytime.

RE and Worship Parent Questionnaire (blank)

To help support Worship at home, have a look at these Worship 2 Go sheets below. There are lots of good activities linked to each specific Christian Value. Keep checking back as more will be added throughout the half term.

Worship 2 Go Lent

Worship 2 Go – Water into wine

Worship 2 Go Spring – Simeon and Anna

Worship 2 Go – Keeping on….

Worship 2 Go – Snow

Worship 2 Go Spring – Epiphany

Each half term, we focus on a different Christian Value around school. Take a look below at what our focus is this half term:

Autumn 2 2021

‘The greatest among you will be your servant.’ Matthew 23:11

Jesus exemplified in person what it meant to be called the ‘servant king.’ Simply, serving means to give time and resources to others, out of love, not expecting anything in return.

Some questions we will consider as a school community are:

  • How are we encouraged to serve one another?
  • How are acts of service celebrated in school?
  • Are school members active in service in the wider community?
  • Numerous adults serve the school community behind the scenes. Are you aware of who they are and what they do?
  • How do we show our appreciation and gratitude to those who serve us?

Some Bible stories that illustrate this value are:

  • A Widow and her Son (1 Kings 17)
  • The Paralyzed Man (Matthew 9)
  • Ruth and Naomi (Ruth 1)

Other stories you might wish to read with your children at home which illustrate the value of Service are:

  • The magic paint brush by Julia Donaldson.
  • The mousehole by Antonia Barbar.
  • The mouse and the lion in The Lion Storyteller Bedtime Book.

Stories from Other Religions that call all be found in A Tapestry of Tales:

  • The Hare-mark on the Moon
  • The Monkey Bridge
  • Woman at the Gate of Mecca
  • Estherthe Jewish Queen
  • lehna and the Grass

Autumn 1 2021

‘Encourage one another and build each other up.’ 1 Thessalonians 5.11

We are focusing on the Worship Value of Friendship this half term. The words of wisdom from the Bible for our focus school value were written over 2000 years ago by St Paul. St Paul wanted to teach people that the best way to live in friendship is to encourage one another rather than being critical or negative.

Christians believe they can call God their friend because of the relationship made possible through Jesus.

Some questions we will consider as a school community are:

  • How do you support and encourage friendship?
  • How do you work co-operatively and collaboratively in pairs and in groups?
  • How do we find ways to support each other in the community?
  • How do we make sure we don’t leave anyone out?
  • How do we restore broken friendships?

Some Bible stories that illustrate this value are:

  • Twelve Special Friends (Matthew 10)
  • Breakfast by Galilee (John 21)
  • Jesus and the children (Mark 10)

Other stories you might wish to read with your children at home which illustrate the value of Friendship are:

  • Friends by Rob Lewis
  • Pumpkin Soup by Helen Cooper
  • A Cat and a Dog by Claire Masurel
  • Gorilla by Anthony Brown
  • Best Friends by Jacqueline Wilson
  • How do you feel? by Gillian Liu

Stories from Other Religions:

  • The Thief and the Veil – an Islamic story by Jenny Rose
  • The Prince and the Guru’s Cloak – a Sikh story by A Ganeri
  • The Magic Herb Mountain from A Tapestry of Tales, Palmer & Breuilly

Summer 2021

The Christian Value we will be focusing on this half term is Truthfulness. Christians believe that truth is revealed in the Bible and supremely in the person and life of Jesus Christ. Through Jesus’ teaching we are given an insight into the nature of God and the way in which He means us to live.

Some questions to consider:

  • How are we truthful in our dealings with one another?
  • Do we understand that life is about a search for truth and meaning?
  • Do we understand the concept of being true to ourselves and standing up for our own beliefs?

Some Bible stories that illustrate this value are:

  • The Burning Bush (Exodus 2-4)
  • The Two Builders (Matthew 7, Luke 6)
  • A Hard Question (Luke 20)
  • The Night Visitor (John 3)

Other stories you might want to read with your children are:

  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl
  • The Boy who cried Wolf by Bob Hartman
  • Spilled Water by Sally Grindley
  • Who made me? by Shirley Tulloch

Stories from Other Religions:

  • A Buddist Story – The Search for Truth by A Ganeri
  • A Hindu Story- The God and the Wicked Witch by A Ganeri
  • A Sikh story – The Milk and the Jasmine Flower by Palmer and Breuilly
  • From a Tapestry of Tales – Elijah and the Prophets of Baal

Spring 2021

Our chosen Christian Value for this half term is Peace. Jesus said ‘Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God.’ (Matthew 5:9) Peace-making actions can range from helping to resolve conflict to creating a space of stillness. Peace, in the sense of total well-being, is God’s intention for the whole of creation, and is a promise that awaits ultimate fulfilment.

Some questions to consider:
– How can we help each other to live in peace?
– How can we develop our skills as peacemakers?
– What can we do to resolve conflict?
– What do we mean by ‘ Peace with God’ and ‘the peace of God’?

Some Bible stories that illustrate this value are:
– The Message of Isaiah (Isaiah 2,3,11)
– The Promised King (Isaiah 9, Micah 5)
– Mary, Martha and Lazarus (Luke 10)
– Palm Sunday (Matthew 21, Mark 11, Luke 19)

Other stories you might want to read with your children are:
The War Game : Michael Foreman
This is Our House : Michael Rosen
War and Pease : Michael Foreman
Peace at Last : Jill Murphy
The Tunnel : Anthony Brown

Stories from Other Religions:
The Bath of the Buddha : From Buddhist Stories
The Hatred that Lead to War : Stories from the Sikh World
Angulimala the Robber : Stories from the Hindu World

Autumn 2020

The nature of God, as revealed in the Bible, presents all people with choice. Those whose response is one of respect are acknowledging God’s greatness and involvement in the world. Through worship we will be considering respect for creation, each other and ourselves, including humanity in the image of God.

Some questions to consider:
-How do we all show respect for each other in the school and wider community?
-How are children and others encouraged to respect their own and the belongings of others?
-What special words, sacramental actions or religious symbols are used to challenge and inform an understanding of God?
-How do we create opportunities to experience feelings of awe, wonder and mystery?

Some Bible stories that illustrate this value are:
– Mysterious visitors – Genesis 18
– The Ten Commandments – Exodus 20
-God’s Temple – 1 Kings 5-8
-The Lost Boy – Luke 2
-Zaccheus the Tax Collector – Luke 19

Other stories you might want to read to your children are:
– Aesop’s Fables – Kingfisher Publications
– Lion Storyteller Bedtime Stories – Bob Hardman
– A Tapestry of Tales – Palmer & Breuilly
– The Last Wolf – Michael Morpurgo
– Dogger – Shirley Hughes

Stories from Other Religions:
– The Night of the Journey – A Ganeri Islamic Stories
– The God and the Wicked Witch – A Ganeri Buddhist Stories
– The Lady of Ten Thousand Names – Burleigh Muten
– The Story of Hanukah

Spring 2020

For Spring 1, we are focusing on Creation and Creativity. Seen from a Christian perspective, all of life is a ‘gift’, entrusted by a loving creator, God, to humankind for a purpose. This purpose is glimpsed as the creative spirit within each person learns to value and explore, celebrate and enjoy this world in all its mystery and diversity. With this gift comes a mutual responsibility to ensure the creation is not spoiled, but rather sustained and shared by all.

Some questions we will consider are:
– How do the various areas of the curriculum promote creativity and enjoyment?
– How do we exercise responsibility towards their environment?
– How do we experience and express feelings of awe and wonder at the beauty, power and mystery of God’s worlds?

Some Bible stories that illustrate this value are:
– The Garden of Eden (Genesis 18)
– A Flood and a Rainbow (Genesis 6-9)
– The Wonders of Creation (Psalm 8)
– Creation is spoiled (Genesis 3)

Other stories you might want to read at home with your children include:
– Five Little Friends by Sarah Dyer
– One World by Michael Foreman
– Wonderful Earth by N Butterworth
– Let’s Take Care of the Earth by R.L Williams
– Lucy’s Picture by Nicola Moon

Orange Class performed their class worship to the school around the theme of Thankfulness. We talked about what thankfulness means to us and retold the story of Noah’s Ark because we decided we are very thankful for everything God created. The children acted out the story then showed pictures of what they were thankful for. These can be seen in a book on the Year 1 worship table. We said a prayer and sang our I sing Pop song- Friends for life.

Christingle 2019

This half term, our Christian Worship value is Compassion. Christians believe that their attitudes and actions must reflect the kindness, mercy and compassion of Jesus and the love of God for everyone.

On the run up to Christmas we linked up with The Children’s Society to learn about and make Christingles. We asked the children for donations in exchange they made a Christingle. We welcomed Mr Davies from The Children’s Society who led a whole school worship about the history of the Christingle. We now know what each part of the Christingle represents. Rev Helen Scanlan also led a worship the following week where we recapped our learning whilst Mrs Irvin dressed as a Christingle!

Some questions we will consider during our Worship are:
How do we show kindness and respect to one another?
What links with charities do we have?
How are new members of our school community nurtured and supported in their first term?
How do we emphasise with members of our community who have suffered traumatic experiences?

Bible stories relevant to this value include:
Baby in the Bulrushes (Exodus 1,2)
David Spares Saul (1 Samuel 23,24)
The Good Samaritan (Luke 10)
The Lost Sheep (Luke 15)
The Loving Husband (Hosea)

You may want to explore some of these other stories with your children which illustrate compassion:
Not Now Bernard by David McKee
Refugee Boy by B Zephaniah
The Iron Man by Ted Hughes
The Love-Me Bird by Joyce Dunbar
The Happy Prince by Oscar Wilde

Summer 2019

This half term, our Christian Worship focus is Respect. The nature of God, as revealed in the Bible, pre. Those whose response is one of respect are acknowledging God’s greatness, authority and involvement in the world. This will extend to respect for the created order, including humanity made in the image of God.

Some questions we will consider are:
How do we show respect for one another in our school community?
How do we value and respect our own and other people’s belongings?
How do policies and practices in the school engender respect for all members of the school community?

Bible stories that illustrate the value of Respect are:
The Burning Bush (Exodus 2-4)
The Ten Commandments (Exodus 20)
Thrown to the Lions (Daniel 6)
Zaccheus the Tax Collector (Luke 19)

Other books you could read at home with your children include:
Singing for Mrs Pettigrew by Michael Morpurgo
Circle of Days by Reeve Lindbergh
Flop-ear and his friends by Guido Van Genechten

It was Yellow Classes turn to run the whole school worship this morning. They chose, alongside Mrs Moran, to tell the school all about their RE topic climate change. They fluently and expertly told the school about how the planet is changing. They stood up confidently and said how we are affecting the planet we live on and asked the rest of the school to make promises of how they can help by making small changes. For example, Jackson said he’d stop using his xbox for an hour and Xhesika said she will try to walk more to school. How can you help?
Mrs Moran and Mrs Warburton were very proud of Yellow Class.

Summer 2019

Christian Aid Week

Yellow class have been finding out all about climate change and the way it can affect our planet and some of the poorest people. They have been sharing what they have learnt with the whole school leading a worship assembly. They have asked the whole school to consider their green footprint. They also thanked the school for supporting their cake sale. Yellow class parents and children donated cakes which were sold during break. They managed to raise a magnificent £70.60. Thank you to all families for supporting our charity work.

Remembrance Day

Yellow class walked to the local Cenotaph in Reddish. We remembered all the heroes who lost their lives in the war. We held a two minute silence at 11am and prayed for all the people who had fallen.

Mr Beckingham visit!

Mr Beckingham came to visit school once again. He talked to us about the true meaning of Christmas with the birth of Jesus Christ. He performed some impressive magic tricks to make us think about what happens when people take Christ out of Christmas! We really enjoyed the special worship time.