First Federation Trust
It is very difficult to put into words what ‘spirituality’ actually is because it can be a very personal experience. It differs from person to person, and often spirituality changes within people during their lifetime. Spirituality is not the same as having a religion or faith; a person can be spiritual without having a particular faith.
Here at Salcombe, we have defined spirituality as:
“Spirituality is not something we can see; it is something we feel inside ourselves. It is about awe and wonder, asking questions, inspiration and being aware of something ‘bigger’ outside of ourselves.”
The language we use to define spirituality is oftern not child-friendly, so when talking to children about it we link it to our values and refer to it as:
- A sense of purpose (SERVICE)
- A feeling of awe and wonder (ASPIRATION)
- An awareness of our inner truth to do the right thing (INTEGRITY)
- A love for nature and living things (LOVE)
Here at Salcombe, we talk about the importance of being ‘purposeful’ and ‘having a purpose’. We recognise that this can evolve over time and change in response to different things happening in our lives. We encourage children and staff to talk about things they love to do and how it makes them feel. Children also get the opportunity to meet lots of visitors who share their interests and achievements and how what they do has made a difference to their own lives and the lives of others.
Awe and Wonder
Children are born inquisitive, and it is our duty to nurture this natural curiosity and guide them towards looking at the world and noticing, with awe and wonder, the natural and man-made delights all around us. We want to encourage them to ask ‘big questions’ about life, religion, nature, science and any other area of fascination.
We talk about using our inner compass to ‘do the right thing’ even when others are not. Our inner truth or ‘spiritual integrity’ helps us to make the right decisions to better ourselves and have a positive influence on others. Here at Salcombe, we often reflect on whether we might be recognised as a role model and what impact this might have on others in our community and beyond.
Nature and Living Things
We are lucky to be situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty and this provides us with many opportunities to connect with nature. As a Church School, this is especially important. We have a very active Eco Committee and Ethos Club and all children get the opportunity to take part in Forest School. Throughout many areas of the curriculum, children learn about the world and how they can care for living things. We have also worked with local charities, Seaful and Devon Wildlife Trust to give children opportunities to further explore the importance of taking care of our planet.
We give children opportunities to:
- Express personal beliefs and compare views with others, sharing feelings and opinions through discussions and stories.
- Begin to develop their own system of beliefs which may or may not include religious beliefs.
- Experience a love of learning through rewarding their enthusiasm and by encouraging exploratory play and learning.
- Reflect upon the world around them and show a sense of awe and wonder towards aspects of the natural world or human achievement.
- Reflect on the situations of others through role play, stories.
- Experience a range of stories, music, art, drama and dance