‘Sowing the seeds to give our children the best possible start to the rest of their lives.'
At Crockham Hill, we believe in providing our children with everything they will need to succeed both at school and in the future. Collective Worship is an integral part of this and helps to bring us together as a community to celebrate our faith in God.
The Parable of the Sower (Matthew 13:1-23) 'Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.'
We have chosen to illustrate our Christian vision through the use of a parable as Jesus did in the Bible. In the story a man sows some seeds on his land and they fall on different types of soil. The seeds that fall on the on good soil flourish and grow well. We consider our children to be the seeds which have landed on the rich soil that is Crockham Hill school and all it offers.
As a Church of England (Voluntary Aided) Primary School, Crockham Hill School’s worship policy follows the minimum standards for all schools as set out in the 1988 Education Reform Act and in also is line with the beliefs and practices of the Church of England, as established for the school under its trust deeds. As a Church school we know that God is at the centre of all that is best. Collective worship is therefore a very important part of the life of our school and this policy draws on the advice from the Diocese of Rochester’s Board of Education. We use the Diocese of Rochester Collective Worship Framework as a basis for our Acts of Worship, and therefore collective worship is explicitly Christian, following the Church’s year within an Anglican structure.
Aims of Collective Worship
The core aims of Collective Worship at Crockham Hill CE are for it to be Inclusive, Invitational & Inspirational.
In developing collective worship that is inclusive, invitational and inspiring the school community strives to:
a) Offer the opportunity, without compulsion, to all pupils and adults to grow spiritually through experiences of prayer, stillness, worship and reflection.
b) Enable all pupils and adults to appreciate that Christians worship in different ways, for example using music, silence, story, prayer, reflection, the varied liturgical and other traditions of Anglican/Methodist worship, festivals and, where appropriate, the Eucharist.
c) Help pupils and adults to appreciate the relevance of faith in today’s world, to encounter the teachings of Jesus and the Bible and to develop their understanding of the Christian belief in the trinitarian nature of God and its language.
d) Enable pupils as well as adults to engage in the planning, leading and evaluation of collective worship in ways that lead to improving practice. Leaders of worship, including clergy, have access to regular training.
e) Encourage local church community partnerships to support the school effectively in developing its provision for collective worship.
Organisation of Collective Worship
We meet daily and the usual pattern is as follows (but we do change days to fit in our visitors, special worship dates etc):
Monday – Whole school/Headteacher led
Tuesday - Whole school/Deputy Headteacher led
Wednesday – Whole School/Teacher led
Thursday – Whole School/Incumbent led
Friday – Whole School Celebration/Leading Lights (children led)
We are mindful of the variation in personal spiritual styles and provide a range of creative opportunities including (eg: music, silence, symbolism, drama, use of IT).
Our worship consists of 4 elements:
- Gather – we welcome the community, for example, (with music, liturgy and the lighting of a candle)
- Engage – we share, for example, (a Bible reading, followed by an activity to engage pupils with the Christian message)
- Respond – pupils, for example, (discuss, share, reflect, pray or sing)
- Send – we share, for example, (the message of the worship again and ask pupils to think about how they will affect their day / learning/ behaviour. We close with liturgy, final prayer, music and the blowing out of our special candle
Structure of Collective Worship
The shape of the Church’s Year is reflected throughout the terms as follows
- Term 1 – Harvest
- Term 2 – Advent and Christmas
- Term 3 – Epiphany and Lent
- Term 4 – Easter
- Term 5 - Pentecost
- Each term includes a number of saints and notable Christians whose commemoration days fall during the particular period according to the Church’s calendar
Care is taken to make the setting for the act of worship special for the occasion. Music is played as the children enter and exit. A candle is lit at the beginning of our worship and the Bible is opened to signal to the children that God's word is always with us.
Special Services and Church Links
Once a week, we have the Reverend or a visiting member of the local church to lead our worship.
Special services are held in the church at the end of each term, allowing pupils to participate in a Harvest, Christmas, Easter and End of Year service. Parents and Governors are invited to join us in these services.
We are extremely proud of our Leading Lights pupils, who lead our Collective Worship at least once every half term. They are excellent role models to the rest of the school community and thoroughly enjoy sharing their ideas and opinions with the rest of the school.