Religious Education

Religious education provokes challenging questions about the ultimate meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God, the self and the nature of reality, issues of right and wrong, and what it means to be human.

RE develops pupils’ knowledge and understanding of Christianity, of other principal religions, other religious traditions and worldviews that offer answers to questions such as these. RE contributes to pupils’ personal development and well-being and to community cohesion by promoting mutual respect and tolerance in a diverse society.

The curriculum as a whole reflects that Great Britain is traditionally Christian, but also recognises the multi-cultural and multi-faith development the UK has undergone. With this in mind, religion is examined from both a local and wider context.

RE also makes important contributions to other parts of the school curriculum such as;

  • Citizenship
  • Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education (PSHE).
  • Spiritual, Moral, Social, Cultural development (SMSC).
  • Fundamental British Value

Pupils will also have the opportunity to partake in a range of education events and visits, including:

  • Visits to places of worship.
  • Visiting speakers from a range of faith backgrounds.
  • Visit to Rome, Italy.
  • Visit to Old Trafford to study racism.

KS3

At key stage 3 we have followed the non-statutory guidance laid out in the new national curriculum.
We have developed and adapted this to create a curriculum that not only interests and engages pupils, but also allows them to develop spiritually and morally.
The curriculum follows a thematic structure that allows pupils to continually build on their knowledge and understanding from lesson to lesson, term to term and year to year.
The year 7 programme of study aims to provide pupils with a strong foundational knowledge regarding differing beliefs about God (including atheist views), different approaches to worship, and the historical context of religion. This base knowledge lays a foundation on which further understanding can be built – right the way through to GCSE and A-level.
As well as classroom based learning, the KS3 curriculum allows the pupils the opportunity for experiential based learning. In year 7 the curriculum allows us the opportunity to welcome speakers from the local community into school to discuss their beliefs and values and in year 8 the curriculum enables us to visit various places of worship.
The content covered at KS3 not only provides pupils with the knowledge needed at KS4, but also the skills. Our enquiry based learning system develops pupils’ ability to question ideas and opinions and to openly discuss their own points of view. These critical reasoning skills are essential to not only GCSE, but A-level and further.

Program of Study

Year Group Autumn 1 Autumn 2 Spring 1 Spring 2 Summer 1 Summer 2
7 Why do we study RE? The Island. Beliefs: Who is God Beliefs: Who is God? Worship: How and why do we communicate with God? Worship: How and why do we communicate with God? Origins: Religious Founders.
8 Worship: Where do we worship God? Worship: Where do we worship God? Beliefs: Rites of Passage. Beliefs: Rites of Passage. Faith in action: How can we change the world? Faith in action: How can we change the world?
9 Racism & Community Cohesion Racism & Community Cohesion Arguments for the Existence of God: Design Arguments for the Existence of God: Causation Matters of Life and Death: Abortion Matters of Life and Death: Euthanasia

Homework Projects

Year Group Autumn 1 Autumn 2
7 Nantwich: A guidebook to local churches. Autumn 1
8 Animal Testing Campaign Summer 2
9 Organ Donation: Opt in or out? Spring 1

KS4

It is a statutory requirement that all pupils have engagement with RE during KS4. For those pupils with a keen interest and inquisitive mind a full-course GCSE is available as an option. All other pupils will study a core non-examined program during year 10.
The KS4 programme of study has been specially selected to both complement and build on the areas studied at KS3. Pupils will delve a wide range of contemporary ethical issues and consider what the religious responses to these may be.

Program of Study

Year Group Autumn 1 Autumn 2 Spring 1 Spring 2 Summer 1 Summer 2
10 Ethics: An introduction to moral decision making. Ethics: Environmental & Medical Issues Ethics: Environmental & Medical Issues Ethics: Peace & Conflict Ethics: Peace & Conflict Ethics: Crime & Punishment

GCSE Option

The GCSE Specification can be found here:
AQA Specifications
Course Name: Religious Studies Specification A Full Course GCSE
Course Number: 8062
Examination Board: AQA

Why study Religious Studies?
Religious Studies is a rigorous and demanding academic discipline in its own right and is therefore viewed highly by universities and employers alike. Candidates are not required to belong to any religious group and success in the subject is not measured in terms of personal faith and commitment. All that is required is an open and enquiring mind and a willingness to consider a range of responses to questions of religion, philosophy and morality.

Religious Studies…….

  • Encourages philosophical thought, decision making skills, collaboration and independent working skills and the search for compromise and conflict resolutions that work
  • Creates opportunities for students to develop their skills of dialogue, interpretation and analysis in a coherent context. All these are vital skills in a modern workforce where communication, collaboration and cooperation are core skills.
  • Develops core skills of literacy.
  • Provides an excellent opportunity for students to engage with contemporary contentious issues, developing social, cultural, political, philosophical and historical awareness.
  • Enables students to learn to respect themselves and understand their own identity, to respect others, and to understand their own and others’ rights and responsibilities. All these skills are invaluable at a time when communities are becoming more diverse and there is an even greater need for a more religiously literate and tolerant society.

Course Content: Year 10

The Study of Religion: Catholic Christianity
Students will study the beliefs, teachings and practices of Catholic Christianity including, the Trinity, beliefs about life after death, the sacraments, pilgrimage and the work of the Church in the world today. Students will be required to refer to scripture and/or sacred texts where appropriate. Students will show an understanding of the influence of the beliefs, teachings and practices studied on individuals, communities and societies.

Relationships and Families
This thematic study will enable students to gain an understanding of issues found in contemporary British society as well as different religious and non-religious beliefs about;

    Human sexuality including heterosexual and homosexual relationships, sexual relationships before and outside of marriage, cohabitation and divorce.
  • The nature of families, the role of parents, contemporary family issues including same-sex parents and polygamy.
  • The roles of men and women, gender equality and gender prejudice and discrimination.

Religion and Life
This thematic study will enable students to gain an understanding of issues found in contemporary British society as well as different religious and non-religious beliefs about;

  • The origins of the universe, including different interpretations of these.
  • The use and abuse of the environment, including the use of natural resources, pollution.
  • The use and abuse of animals, including animal experimentation and the use of animals for food.
  • Abortion, euthanasia, death and an afterlife.

Course Content: Year 11

The Study of Religion: Islam
Students will study the beliefs, teachings and practices of Islam including, Tawhid, beliefs about life after death, the Five Pillars, the concept of Jihad and festivals. Students will be required to refer to scripture and/or sacred texts where appropriate. Students will show an understanding of the influence of the beliefs, teachings and practices studied on individuals, communities and societies.

Religion, peace and conflict
This thematic study will enable students to gain an understanding of issues found in contemporary British society as well as different religious and non-religious beliefs about;

  • The meaning and significance of: peace, justice, forgiveness and reconciliation.
  • Violence, including violent protest and terrorism.
  • The reasons for war including the just war theory, holy war, greed, self-defence and retaliation
  • Pacifism

Religion, crime and punishment
This thematic study will enable students to gain an understanding of issues found in contemporary British society as well as different religious and non-religious beliefs about;

  • The reasons for crime including poverty, upbringing, mental illness, addiction, greed, hate, opposition to a ‘bad’/unjust law.
  • Different types of crime including hate crimes, theft and murder.
  • The aims of punishment including: retribution, deterrence, reformation.
  • The treatment of criminals including prison, corporal punishment, community service and the death penalty.

Assessment: There is no coursework and no controlled test. Assessment is by written examination of the two components studied over the two years at the end of Year 11.

Paper One:
What’s assessed Beliefs, teachings and practices of:

  • Catholic Christianity
  • Islam
How it’s assessed

  • Written exam: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • 96 marks (plus 5 marks for Spelling, punctuation and grammar (SPaG))
  • 50% of GCSE
Questions

  • The questions within each religion have a common structure of two five-part questions of 1, 2, 4, 5 and 6 marks plus one 12 mark extended writing question
Paper Two:
What’s assessed The thematic study of;

  • Relationships and families
  • Religion and life
  • Religion, peace and conflict
  • Religion, crime and punishment
How it’s assessed
Written exam: 1 hour 45 minutes

  • 96 marks (plus 5 marks for Spelling, punctuation and grammar (SPaG))
  • 50% of GCSE
Questions

  • Each theme has a common structure of one five-part question of 1, 2, 4, 5 and 12 marks
  • Each theme is marked out of 24

KS4

Career Pathways
GCSE Religious Studies fosters students’ skills of dialogue, interpretation and analysis in a coherent context and therefore facilitates post-16 provision in an array of subjects such as;

  • English
  • English Literature
  • Government and Politics
  • Psychology
  • Sociology
  • Law

A qualification in Religious Studies is also extremely useful for any career which involves direct contact with people and requires some understanding of human nature, any career which involves the use of texts, and careers in which the presentation and communication of ideas and issues are important. Examples include:

  • The legal profession
  • Journalism
  • Social work
  • Banking
  • Personnel management
  • Teaching
  • Medical professions