School as a place of Worship
It is an essential part of the Muslim school’s purpose that it should provide children and young people with an experience of worship which underpins the fundamental beliefs of the local community. It is always hoped that this experience will be as vibrant, rich and varied as possible.
New Horizon Community school is proud to be working in association with many local mosques and community centres. We wish to be accessible to all those who desire an Islamic environment for their children regardless of their ethnicity or their personal religious beliefs. We will strive to provide opportunities for worship that challenge and enrich the religious experience of our students. These opportunities will include collective worship to enrich their sense of community and spirituality as well as individual prayer to encourage self reflection.
To contribute to pupils’ faith and spiritual development so they can:
- Experience prayer and worship so that they have a real sense of being valued members of their Muslim community.
- Understand the importance of prayer and worship in daily living and how it helps us to grow in our relationships with God and with others.
- Experience prayer and worship in a way that makes sense to them and helps them to develop as responsible Muslims so as to value all people of all faiths and communities.
- Recognise a sense of spirituality and that which is holy.
- Distinguish between the different opportunities for prayer and worship.
- Have opportunities for prayer as a form of celebration.
- Develop an understanding of the use/importance of scripture used by the Muslim community.
Appreciate the distinctive nature of the importance of prayer both the physical and spiritual aspects for the Muslim community.
We will achieve this by:
- Reflecting on moral and social issues.
- Become more aware of and respecting the nature and needs of others.
- Developing inclusive attitudes of tolerance and acceptance of difference.
- Appreciating work undertaken by pupils in all areas of the curriculum.
- Contributing to the school community, and the wider community.
- Developing and reflecting on the values of the school.
- Develop our links with other schools locally and across the World.
- Encourage a sense of awe and wonder for God and his creations.
- Listening to stories from other faiths and learn about their significance.
- Developing awareness of how other faiths worship.
At New Horizon Community School we will plan the following:
- Whole school worship to follow themes extending over a week or a half a term. These themes will be based on feelings, attitudes, stories or current world events. Assembly themes are based on a strong Muslim ethos. The themes will also be based on important social events which will include those associated with different faiths.
- The structure of an assembly will broadly include Nasheed, prayer, a story or other focus, and time for reflection.
- We will encourage children to enter and leave all forms of prayer and worship quietly and calmly, respecting the need for stillness and silence whilst taking part in an act of worship.
- We will provide opportunities for children to awaken to feelings and senses from which worship arises.
- A sense of collective wonder, awe, beauty, thankfulness and a range of other emotions that demonstrate feelings of unity and equality
Teaching and Learning
Islam is a way of life and worship is an integral part of a healthy development of students. Opportunities will be provided for students to develop leadership skills, performance skills, singing ability, speaking in groups and in front of others, and to participate in group preparation and presentation. Keeping collective worship simple promotes dignity and respect, can enhance the celebration and enables all present to engage and feel involved.
Students are constantly made aware of importance of God and His presence in all aspects of their lives. All lessons commence with prayer and an appreciation for the opportunities presented.
Organisation and Methodology
The school prides itself in providing an environment where all students can offer their daily obligatory prayers. Prayer is organised so that students can enter the Prayer Hall at the allocated time and pray individually and therefore comfortably at their own pace. Sufficient time has been allocated to prayer so that students can peacefully meditate or recite Qur’an prior to or after the formal prayer. The environment during Prayer must be conducive to the act of worship so the school will take serious disciplinary action against those who prevent or interrupt others
from praying. Those who struggle to pray should inform a member of staff of their issues so that they can receive guidance and support.
Those students who are unable to prayer are expected to reflect upon themselves through quiet meditation. All students are encouraged to bring ‘Prayer Beads’ to school so that they can in essence continue to pray.
Assemblies will always include prayer and praise by song and reflection, and may include:
- A short passage of scripture including translation and discussion.
- A story, poem or piece of literature.
- A personal account of an event or experience of life.
- Music/Art/Dance/Drama/Display/Power-Point/led by students.
- The ‘Student of the Week’ will be named in recognition of their achievements during the week
Reviewed November 2013
To Review June 2014