Religion, Philosophy & Ethics
To produce curious critical thinkers who can fairly articulate a wide range of views.
Year 7 begin their journey in R.E. by looking at religious journeys – Pilgrimages. They must first understand the fundamentals of Christianity. In order to understand the Bible, they must first understand the nature of God, as well as the special stages in the life of a Catholic (sacraments) and the festivals of the Liturgical Year. They need to recognize their identity before moving forward. This is achieved by teaching them about their house saints, as well as the structure of the Church. We finish by teaching the basics of Judaism, since that is where the roots of Christianity lie.
Now that they know the key festivals and the structure of the liturgical year, Year 8 learn why the Bible is important. Once they understand it, they progress to examining the prophets who God spoke to. Some, like Isaiah, made prophecies expressing that a Messiah would come. This leads us onto the Son of God unit, followed by life after death. Pupils then apply the teachings of Jesus to examples of injustice in the world today. As pupils understand Christianity, they can now examine other world religions. They study Hinduism, followed by Islam and Sikhism.
Now that they understand Catholicism, we bring Protestantism into the syllabus. We begin the year by teaching about the Church’s hierarchy and why it split. Different Christian denominations have different opinions about how to correctly approach controversial issues such as Abortion and Euthanasia. So the reasons for their views must be understand before we progress to ethical debates and their different attitudes towards men and women. We then examine scientific interpretations of creation before embarking on the GCSE syllabus; beginning with Judaism – the first Abrahamic religion.
Year 10 spend the year studying the Catholic Christianity GCSE syllabus. They begin with Creation and examine how Adam and Eve broke our relationship with God, before looking at Incarnation and how Jesus restored our relationship with God. The three parts of God can then be investigated in the Triune God unit, and how they make Redemption possible. We then teach how the Church plays a leading role in this Redemption, before finishing the year with beliefs and customs surrounding life after death.
Now that they know the teachings and beliefs of Christians, Year 11 can now apply these to controversial ethical topics. They begin by looking at the role that religion plays in relationships and family, debating whether or not this approach is appropriate. They then apply biblical verses and teachings to examples of conflict, as well as human rights and social justice. The remainder of the year before the GCSE exams is dedicated to revising the more common areas of weakness from the previous two years.
A-LEVEL PHILOSOPHY AND ETHICS
Year 12 begin A Level Philosophy by learning about two of the oldest philosophers: Plato and Aristotle. They then apply their beliefs to the Soul, Body and Mind, before progressing onto more modern philosophers and examining their views on the existence of God. They argue whether certain religious experiences prove God’s existence, before finishing the AS course by considering why an all-loving, all-powerful God would allow evil into the world. This leads into the Developments in Christian Thought course, which begins with Augustine’s teachings on human nature, having just studied his theodicy of the problem of evil. They then look at death and the afterlife.
In Ethics, Year 12 learn about the four normative ethical theories, before applying them to Euthanasia and Business Ethics. This leads into the other half of Developments in Christian Thought, where we consider the best way to apply Christian teachings to case studies such as Nazi Germany during World War II.
Now that the VI Form can debate whether or not God exists in Philosophy, they can now argue whether or not there is a meaningful way to discuss God. They will simultaneously study Meta-Ethics; where they consider what we mean when we use the words “good” and “bad”. They finish the course by examining God’s attributes and determining whether or not they are contradictory.
They learn about Freud and Aquinas’ views on Conscience, before continuing to apply the normative ethical theories to Sexual Ethics.
Year 13 finish the course by exploring A2 Developments in Christian Thought. Whether religion can function in society and whether or not it can combine with Marxism.
For information on careers in Religious Education please see the below document:
For information regarding Religious Education please contact the following:
- Mr Thomas Ojakovoh (Head of Religious Education) - firstname.lastname@example.org
- Ms Jennifer Ossei-Brainoo (Second in Charge of Religious Education) - email@example.com