Religious Education

Introduction

The aim of Religious Education at Trinity is to provide children with both a strong respect for faiths and cultures beyond Christianity, while also ensuring that students have a firm understanding of the basics of the Christian faith. Christianity has shaped our country and ultimately the way we think.  Learning about our background enables pupils to learn more about themselves and begin to appreciate the potential they each have to make a difference in the world. We follow the Kent agreed syllabus for Religious Education with a focus on Christianity. All students learn  ‘about’ religion (AO1) and ‘from’ religion (AO2).

Key Stage 3

The six major religions are taught systematically during KS3.  In Year 7 the syllabus comprises of Sikhism, Judaism and Christianity. Sikhism is a faith studied in year 6 by some primary schools and this will help the transition into secondary education. There is the opportunity to visit Guru Nanak Darbar Gurdwara in Gravesend where students can develop understanding of the Sikh code of conduct and ethos of Sikh philosophy.

During year 8 students study Islam, Christianity and Buddhism and the year 9 syllabus consists of a philosophy module, Hinduism and Christianity. Pupils will have the opportunity to visit a Hindu temple to witness Hindu faith in practice by observing the midday arti ceremony and to see the outstanding architecture of Shri Swaminarayan Mandir.

During key stage three we adopt a ‘Project Based Learning’ approach to homework set, encouraging students to work independently and creatively to stretch their understanding of a particular subject or religion.

Key Stage 4

Our vision for GCSE is to ensure that the students are equipped to think critically around ethical issues studied, and how religious belief might be applied to them. All students will complete a programme of study for Religious Education at Trinity, and therefore all students will complete their GCSE in Religious Education A with the AQA examination board. This examination will help aid students ability to write about their opinion in a balanced yet firm and constructive manor, a skill vital for all post 16 subjects, however we also aim that students learn to develop an appreciation of ‘the other point of view’ and therefore own the ability to reflect on the viewpoints of all people with faith or none.

The GCSE course focuses on two major religions, Christianity (Unit 1) and Judaism (Unit 10) and on social, moral and world issues from a variety of perspectives. The course deals with the subject in a lively and interactive way and, whilst the learning of basic facts is important, it is the ability to think about them and then give an opinion that really counts.  Pupils find this skill to be a great asset across the curriculum and beyond.

As well as the more traditional topics associated with Religious Education such as the Bible, Church and stewardship, we also focus on a range of contemporary issues. Towards the end of Year 10, students begin the study of Unit 2 and Unit 11; Religion: Ethics where pupils will explore issues raised for religion in the 21st Century. This paper is divided also into four units; Relationships and families, Religion and life, Religion crime and punishment, Religions and peace and conflict, and within this involves looking at a range of topics relevant to us as individuals, as well as to religion and society today. The examinations for both papers will take place at the end of Year 11 and will last 1 hour 30 minutes each.

The AQA website shows an outline of the new GCSE course with guidance of the new grading system 9-1.

Vision

Overall we aim to give students a broad and enriching experience.  Throughout their education, students will engage with good quality teaching and experience extracurricular opportunities in the forms of visiting speakers and trips.

There is a desire for students to continue this study at Key Stage 5. Philosophy and Religious Education have become one of the most popular options taken at A Level. Both subjects are vital for any career path and the knowledge and skills acquired can make a significant contribution to any job that requires you to think rigorously and communicate logically.