Religious Education at the Gryphon is firmly rooted in the belief in having life in all of its fullness (John 10:10). We encourage students in the development of wisdom, though fostering an excitement about learning and an ability to reflect thoughtfully on theological and philosophical issues. We also believe that Religious education plays an integral part in our community, giving all students the opportunity to explore the spiritual diversity of the world and reflect for themselves on their own spirituality and world views. This then feeds into the value of dignity as a fundamental aspect of RE is the understanding that it is acceptable to disagree, to understand and respect a view that may be different from their own and to treat all with respect. Lastly, we believe that RE provides opportunities for hope. By looking at the world around us, understanding the need for change and being inspired by those who have made a difference in the world. As a Church of England school we believe that Religious Education has a central part to play in the development of each student. As a result every student gets the opportunity to take part in Religious Education.
We aim to provide students with a breadth of religious knowledge about world faiths. The rationale behind Key Stage 3 schemes of work is to build on these introductory units completed at primary school, by providing schemes of work which concentrate on the philosophical and ethical issues presented by religion. We also aim to enable students to develop theological terms and understanding. The schemes also encompass the world faiths that were previously not covered in Key Stages 1 and 2. We use a range of learning activities, encouraging our students to be active in their learning and to use drama, visualisation and the creative arts as well as creative writing and use of primary sources such as religious texts
The aim of Year 7 is to provide a really good base for studying religion by exploring philosophical and ethical issues as well as an in-depth look at Christianity.
Unit One: Philosophy. The students will explore a range of philosophical questions such as; do I exist? Who am I? Can I trust my senses? Does God exist? Why is there something rather than nothing? These are considered through discussion, experiments, research and creative writing.
Unit Two: Christianity – the life of Jesus. Students will look at the key events in the life of Jesus: incarnation, teaching, miracles, the passion, resurrection, ascension, Parousia and the second coming. They will explore what happened and how these events impact on Christians today. They will use research or Biblical evidence, creative writing, drama and role play to understanding the impact of Jesus’ life.
Unit Three: Ethics. Students will explore different ethical approaches and apply these to situations such as business ethics and Children’s Rights. There is a clear link made to the school’s status as a Rights Respecting School.
In Year 8 students have the opportunity to explore a variety of questions from the perspective of different world faiths including Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Christianity and Islam. Students will explore these questions using a range of source material from a variety of perspectives. They will respond creatively and be encouraged to debate and discuss and to develop their own reasoned judgements on the issues.
The questions explored will include:
In Year 9 we focus on the impacts that beliefs have on individuals and societies. We examine divergent views within religion and explore the responses that have come from faith.
Unit One: Other Belief Systems. An exciting opportunity for students to consider what makes a religion by looking at alternative systems such as Shinto, Scientology, Jedi’s and Humanism. Students will be encouraged to evaluate what they think is a religion and to explore what impact religion has on people’s lives today.
Unit Two: The impact of the Holocaust. Students will be explore Judaism and the impact that the Holocaust has on the Jewish population. We cover a range of creative and spiritual responses to the Holocaust – including meeting a Holocaust survivor and listening to their testimony. Students have the opportunity to produce a creative piece of work to represent their response to the Holocaust.
Unit Three: Faith in action. Here students will look at people who were inspired by their faith to change the world such as Bonhoeffer, Gandhi and Martin Luther King. Students will reflect on these people’s lives and consider what changes they would like to be a part of.
All students will explore a range of philosophical, theological and social science aspects of RE. It is an opportunity for students to understand and explore a range of viewpoints and to establish their own views. Students will also have opportunities to learn how to effectively create reasoned and logical arguments and how to disagree respectfully. Religious Studies forms an essential part of the broader KS4 education. It allows students to deal with the philosophical ideas and the ethical decision-making processes that underpin many of the issues that increasingly affect society today. It also allows them the opportunity to develop and explore the religious, spiritual, moral and philosophical side of their personality within a wider context.
Religious Studies at GCSE offers you the chance to engage with some of the most significant philosophical and ethical questions in the world today. We will discuss important ethical issues ranging from ‘is it acceptable to genetically modify animals?’ to ‘should countries be allowed to possess nuclear weapons?’ And consider philosophical debates such as the ‘problem of evil’ and ‘why is there something rather than nothing?’ You will explore these and more through the consideration of Christianity, Hinduism and your own views (religious or non-religious).
Students who opt for RE will be following the AQA Religious Studies A Specification. This will be comprised of: