At St. Mary’s, we teach the children about Christian values which are important for everyday life. Over the year, we will be focusing on 6 of the 15 core values, looking at one each term. These values have been chosen by the pupils, parents, staff and governors.
They are at the heart of everything we do at St. Mary’s.
Term 1 – Friendship
Term 2 – Compassion
Term 3 – Perseverance
Term 4 – Respect
Term 5 – Generosity and Service
Term 6 – Truthfulness
Proverb 17:17 ‘A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity.’
The Christian Value we are particularly focusing on this term is Friendship. True friendship enables each person to grow and ensures that the unique individuality of each person is recognised. The special relationship we have with certain people; a friend loves and cares for you at all times. Christians believe that God’s friendship towards us will last forever. Friendship is a partnership of shared experiences, talents, interests and enthusiasms. In school we will be thinking about how we can be friends to others and how do we receive another’s friendship, including God’s friendship.
The Last Supper – friends gathering together
The Good Samaritan – helping others
The Feeding of the 5000 – sharing a meal together
Jesus Calls his Disciples – calling his 12 friends
The Paralysed Man – friends helping their friend
The lord is gracious and compassionate; slow to anger and rich in love. The Lord is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made (Psalm 145: 8-9)
We teach children that their attitudes and actions must reflect kindness and compassion. Compassion is much stronger than sympathy; if you have compassion you step into someone’s shoes, share their experiences and sufferings and want to support them or act on their behalf. It is not just feeling sorry for someone but actually doing something about making their life or situation better.
Compassion is about ‘standing in someone else’s shoes’ when they are having a hard time. In other words, trying to understand how they might be feeling and doing our best to try to help. Talk together about:
- how we can show compassion and kindness to one another at home
- recognising when friends at school need us to listen and act with compassion
- stories in the news demonstrating how strangers show compassion in times of natural disasters
- how nations show compassion to other nations at times of disaster or need by sending money or volunteers to help
The Parable of the Good Samaritan – a stranger helping another
The Prodigal Son – the father welcomes the son back and forgives him without question.
The Parable of the Lost Sheep – looking after others and caring for them.
Daniel in the Lion’s Den – God saved Daniel from the lions.
The Innkeeper in the Christmas Story – he let Mary and Joseph use the stable when everywhere else was full.
Emphasis upon endurance and perseverance is common in the New Testament where it is linked with patience and suffering.
At its root, endurance and perseverance is recognition that life is sometimes difficult and painful, and that it is important not to give up in the face of adversity.
Endurance and perseverance are only possible where there is hope and that hope is based on the enduring nature of God’s love and faithfulness. Even Jesus, for all his strength and ability to endure, looked to his disciples to help and sustain him by watching and praying with him (Matthew 26).
Jesus is tempted by the devil – persevering through difficult times.
The plagues of Egypt – The Israelites persevered through the plagues and their escape from Egypt.
The parable of the lost sheep – the farmer persevered when looking for the lost sheep.
The story of Nehemiah - despite discouragement from others, she was determined to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.
The story of Daniel – he kept going to do the right thing.
The Bible has so much to offer in this area of positive personal, relational and community values, and its timeless wisdom can help all us as a Christian school pass on to the next generation the qualities of life that are most valuable and which, as Christians, we believe are not only God-given but also can be God-energised in our lives.
Respect has different meanings but all play a part in how Christians value themselves and the lives of others. Respecting those that love and care for us, our parents, carers and those in the local community, is common in all traditions. We should appreciate what's done for us, finding cooperation not conflict and take responsibility. Romans13 states that we should 'Pay others the honour and respect you owe them'.
Respect for others - everyone is special; everyone's opinion matters; everyone's contribution is important; everyone's feelings should be considered; everyone's faith is sacred
Respect can mean simply treating each other with politeness and courtesy, and recognising that everyone’s contribution is important and that everyone’s feelings should be considered. At St. Mary's, we regularly discuss how respecting someone does not mean that we always agree with the other person but that we are prepared to listen and share our views without rudeness or impatience.
The Ten Commandments – the rules God gave as guidelines to live by.
Jesus throws the traders from the temple – ‘my father’s house has been turned in to a den of thieves.’ – Discuss what it means.
Paul's instructions on respecting those who run our society for the common good - see Romans 13:1-10
Respecting each other - see 1 Peter 3:15-17
Zaccheus the Tax Collector
Generosity and Service
God’s generosity is best described as ‘grace’, love given freely without limit or conditions. This generosity, once experienced and acknowledged by an individual, can in turn release a generous spirit towards others.
Some questions which link with the value of generosity:
Do we truly understand the concept of giving without seeking any reward?
How do we act with generosity in both our words and actions?
Which areas of the curriculum enable us to consider the importance of being generous not only with material objects but also with time, spirit and talents?
The Widow’s Mite – ‘God is more interested in the heart of the giver than the size of the gift.’
‘God loves a cheerful giver.’ 2 Corinthians 9 v 7
Queen Esther serves her people
‘There is more happiness in giving than receiving.’ Acts 20 v35
God’s Promise to Abraham - Genesis 13-15)
The feeding of the 5,000 – how the boy was generous with the food which he had.
Truth is revealed in the bible and we see Jesus as the example of truth in everything. The life of Jesus shows us how God wants us to live our lives. Christians ask, “What would Jesus say?” Or, “What would Jesus do?” Telling the truth, honesty is something that we all would like to receive but it is sometimes more difficult to find in everyday life. Sometimes it is hard to make a wise choice to tell the truth. Jesus said, ‘I am the way the truth and the life’ John 14 v6
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.
The Burning Bush (Exodus 2-4)
The Two Builders (Matthew 7, Luke 6)
A Hard Question (Luke 20)
The Night Visitor (John 3)
Adam and Eve – the temptation from the snake and admitting their mistake.