Learning Focus 1


This lesson planning page takes you through the lesson materials for Year 6, Branch 1, Learning Focus 1.

Before you begin, make sure you have watched the Year 6 Branch 1 Overview videos, which introduce the key themes to draw out across all Learning Focuses within Branch 1. If you have already seen these videos, feel free to skip on to the next section.

Key Information

Take a look at the following key information about Learning Focus 1, which includes all the links and documents you need to plan your session:

Branch 1
Creation and Covenant

Learning Focus 1
Catholics believe that…the poetic forms in the Second Account of Creation can teach us about our relationship with God.

Teaching time
Approximately 2.5 hours


Lesson Plan Template (access restricted)

Y6 | B1 | LF1

Assessment Framework (access restricted)

Y6 | B1

Self-assessment Proformas (access restricted)

The Second Account of Creation (access restricted)

Scripture Text

Creation Gallery (access restricted)

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You might like to use our Lesson Plan Template for Year 6 Branch 1 Learning Focus 1 to make your own notes/plan as you go along. This template is pre-populated with the Learning Focus, Expected Outcomes and Success Criteria, and a list of titles of available lesson materials. The rest of the document is left blank for you to complete.

What is Learning Focus 1?

Catholics believe that…the poetic forms in the Second Account of Creation can teach us about our relationship with God.

This Learning Focus is foundational to the rest of the Learning Focuses within Branch 1, and so it is especially important to ensure all children understand that the Second Account of Creation is not a literal scientific description.

What are the Expected Outcomes and Success Criteria?

Before we look at the lesson materials in detail, it’s useful to know the desired outcomes. This curriculum is based on the RED Expected Outcomes for each year group. Below is a table mapping specific Expected Outcomes to Success Criteria statements as well as the titles of lesson activities that could be used to achieve these.


Lesson Materials

There are 8 main activities that you can use as building blocks to create your own session. These are explored within this section.

‘Do you remember the story of creation?’

This activity falls within the Hear Knowledge Lens. ‘Do you remember the story of creation?’ is a short interactive quiz to help children recall prior knowledge about the story of creation to set the scene for Year 6 learning at a deeper level. Predominantly this recaps some expected outcomes from Year 3 Branch 1. This activity could be led from the front with the whole class.

All of the questions have fixed answers, for example multiple choice or fill in the blanks, except the final which invites pupils to look at a word cloud and consider what else they remember about the story of creation and what Catholics believe about it. For this final question, you might like to have pupils work independently or in small groups, writing down their responses inspired by particular words and sharing back across the class.

‘There is more to the story…’

Also within the Hear Knowledge Lens, ‘There is more to the story…’ is a video introduction to the concept that there are two accounts of creation. The second half of the video shares some key vocabulary from the Second Account of Creation (Genesis 2:5-10,15-23,3:1-7,9-13,17-19) to help pupils get more out of their first reading of the Scripture passage. The video is approximately 4 minutes long.

‘The Second Account of Creation’

In ‘The Second Account of Creation’ pupils read the Scripture passage for the first time. As with all Hear activities, the reading of Scripture should be the foundation of the learning. Especially for the first time that the Scripture is encountered, it should be read directly from the Bible (not from a screen or handout), and the Bible should be treated with reverence and respect. If possible, all pupils should be able to read or follow along with the passage in a Catholic children’s bible.

After the Scripture has been read for the first time from Bibles, you can give out handouts of the scripture text for pupils to read it again. This time they should highlight/annotate any areas of the story they have questions about or don’t understand. You might like to invite children to share across the class, and/or to revisit their questions/responses throughout the course of the lesson. As well as the downloadable handouts, slides of the Scripture text are available if you want to facilitate this activity differently (but please remember that the first reading of the Scripture should be directly from the Bible).

Now that children have had a first read of the Scripture and had an opportunity to raise questions, they need to learn that the Second Account of Creation is a particular kind of written communication called ‘aetiology’ – a form of literature common in the ancient world that uses a story to explain the cause of something or why things exist the way they do.

We offer two activities to help pupils understand this and why it’s important to know:

‘Styles of Communication’

Firstly, ‘Styles of Communication’, a series of slides to support you in drawing pupil’s attention to different styles of written communication, for example scientific, historical, factual, storytelling, poetry, philosophy etc. The key thing to communicate here is that different communication styles have purposes. You might like to incorporate cross-curricular learning and examples from Literacy to help pupils understand this in addition to or instead of these slides.

‘The STORY of Creation’

Secondly, ‘The STORY of Creation’ is a short video which explains about the poetic form of the Second Account of Creation, and sets pupils up for a deeper reading of Scripture by giving some top tips directly related to the Scripture – considering repetition, imagery, structure, symbolism and theme. The video is approximately 4 minutes long.

After the video, you might like to facilitate a discussion or writing activity where pupils are detectives, using the poetry top tips to look for deeper truths hidden in the story poem. This activity will move from the Hear Knowledge Lens to Believe Knowledge Lens as pupils consider deeper truths that Catholics believe.

‘Creation Gallery’

‘Creation Gallery’ is a beautiful activity which involves pupils looking at 12 different artworks inspired by 12 key moments in the Second Account of Creation. This activity falls into the Live lens – exploring how Catholics respond to the scripture and belief – and also in the Believe lens, as pupils are invited to think more deeply about the truths/beliefs represented within each artwork.
The activity involves two stages:

1) Pupils writing titles for each of the 12 artworks, to help them to better understand the sequence of the key moments within the story.

2) Pupils considering and writing down deeper truths that are represented within each artwork.

There are two ways that we offer to help you facilitate this, unsupported or scaffolded.

The unsupported option involves using the ‘Creation Gallery’ handout, which shows a blank storyboard timeline where pupils can write titles and then truths in their own words.

The scaffolded option utilises slides with titles and truths available for the class to consider and select from.

There are also options to see all the artworks in isolation, an on screen storyboard timeline with completed titles and no truths, and a storyboard timeline with completed titles and truths. These materials might be of use to teachers facilitating in either of these or another way.

Throughout this activity, it’s important to convey that the use of imagery in the Scripture and in the artworks means that there can be many layers of truths. This means that, whilst we have suggested titles and truths in the slides, pupils should be free to consider their answers for themselves.

You might like to highlight the Live element of this activity – that perhaps the artists were responding to the Scripture and Catholic beliefs to enable them to better understand it and live it out in their own lives. You might like to discuss with pupils how these artworks can help us to better understand the Scripture and Catholic beliefs, and inspire us to live these out in our own lives.

‘Awe and Wonder’

‘Awe and Wonder’ is split into two parts, both of which are with the Live Knowledge Lens. Firstly, a short film – approximately 3 minutes – which describes how Catholics respond to the deeper truths in the Second Account of Creation through prayer, praise and worship. Extracts from some Psalms are read aloud, including a longer section of Psalm 139, where King David speaks of the awe and wonder he has for God – who created Him and all the earth, and whose presence is everywhere.

The second part of ‘Awe and Wonder’ shares some sung versions of Psalm 139, which you might like to explore. As part of this activity, you might like to discuss how the artworks and Psalms might help us to pray, praise and worship.

‘Your Own Creative Interpretation’

Finally ‘Your Own Creative Interpretation’ is a creative reflection activity within the Celebrate Knowledge Lens, where pupils are invited to create their own artwork or write their own Psalm of praise reflecting one of the truths that they have learned about and exploring how it resonates with them. They are invited to create a guide to their artwork/Psalm, explaining any images, colours or symbols and how it relates to the Scripture and the deeper truth that is revealed there. You might like to create a display of the artworks/Psalms with their guides, either physically or digitally. Ensure within this activity that there is room for personal expression, including doubts or questions.

Explore More

There are three activities in the Explore More section, which you might like to use to extend learning, or instead of other suggested activities.

‘Everyone is Special’

Firstly ‘Everyone is Special’ produced in partnership with CAFOD introduces the first principle of Catholic Social Teaching – the concept of Human Dignity. Catholic Social Teaching will be returned to in more detail throughout Branch 1, but you might like to introduce the first principle here, linking it to the Scripture in Genesis which inspires the belief. A drag and drop ‘hangman’ style activity invites pupils to guess the word ‘dignity’ before discussing a little more about what it means for them and for the world. This is part of the Believe Knowledge Lens.

‘Write Your Own Psalm’

‘Write Your Own Psalm’ is part of the Live Knowledge Lens, and is particularly suited for pupils working at a deeper level.

It invites them to follow in the footsteps of many Psalm writers, who not only wrote Psalms of praise, but also Psalms filled with questions they wanted to ask God. After reading some examples, pupils are invited to write their own Psalm to God, praising Him for Creation and/or asking their questions about His Creation and their relationship with Him.



Be clear that if asking questions, like all the Psalm writers they should be respectful to God, and seek to honestly know God’s ways and understand His truth. Also, any questions should be followed by the handing over of their questions to God, for example ‘I trust that you have the answers, even when I don’t.’

‘Class Liturgy’

And finally ‘Class Liturgy’ offers crossovers with Prayer and Liturgy, where pupils are invited to plan and lead their own liturgy based on the Second Account of Creation in Genesis and also Psalm 139:1-14. You might like to split the class into groups to prepare different elements, for example, a creative prayer focus, proclaiming the Scripture, responding with a Psalm, a response to aid reflection and a call to action to invite others to go forth and share the message with others. If possible, lead the liturgy with another class or key stage. This is part of the Celebrate Knowledge Lens.

Please be aware that it won’t be appropriate for some children from other faith backgrounds to join in with or lead prayers, so make sure you facilitate accordingly.

A prayer as you plan and lead this Learning Focus

God Our Father,

Thank you for the opportunity to explore this content with the children in my care. 

By the power of your Holy Spirit, lead and guide me as I prepare this lesson. 

Bless me, and each and every child, with an open heart and mind to continue our journey of knowing you more clearly.

I ask this in the name of Jesus, Your Son and our Lord,


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