"I have come that you may have life and have it to the full” - John 10:10
Religious education at Mount Carmel is at the core of the curriculum, where we aim to educate the whole individual, building strong foundations for our pupils’ personal development and helping them form sound understanding of our Catholic faith, the faiths of others and different cultures. We aim to provide our pupils with the skills to become religiously literate and capable of considering the deep theological and philosophical questions which are pertinent to our lives today.
Our curriculum aims to fulfil the requirements of the Religious Education Curriculum Directory, issued by the Bishops of England and Wales. We aim to provide a broad and ambitious curriculum which give all pupils, particularly those pupils who are disadvantaged or have additional needs, the knowledge and cultural capital they need to succeed in life.
At Mount Carmel we aim to ensure that religious education is given the same status, rigour and vigour as other core subjects, and receives 10% of the curriculum time, which equates to 5x 1 hour periods over a fortnight, across all years.
We hope to provide our pupils with opportunities to:
- understand the ‘richness of the Catholic faith’ by producing a comprehensive curriculum which engages pupils and allows them to deepen their religious and theological understanding.
- Raise pupils’ awareness of the Catholic faith along with their understanding of other religious communities, to allow them to become respectful individuals.
- Relate and apply their understanding of the Catholic faith and Gospel values to daily life.
- To experience awe, wonder, reflection and consider their personal spirituality.
- Build resilience and deepen their curiosity to learn about others.
- Deepen their understanding of God as encountered and taught by Catholics.
- Develop their skills in order to know and understand, engage and respond (by making connections) and then analysing and evaluating these concepts and beliefs.
The key stage 3 RE course is designed to fulfil the requirements of the Curriculum Directory for Religious Education. Pupils are assessed regularly throughout each year in relation to NBRIA (National Board of Religious Inspectors and Advisers) levels of attainment.
Our starting points for our pupils can vary greatly, as our intake come from a range of Catholic primary schools, other Christian primary schools and non-faith schools. Therefore, it is essential that our first year 7 topic ‘Beginnings’ allows our pupils to ‘bridge the gap’ between their prior knowledge and their ambitious KS3 schemes of learning.
Learning is embedded through the development of knowledge and skills over time. In key stage 3, the curriculum breadth supports pupils’ knowledge and understanding of the main world religions, such as Christianity, Islam and Judaism. Planning is based on thematic studies whilst also where possible considering the historical development of the Christian faith, that are built on year by year, to enrich and consolidate a basic understanding at key stage 3 of some of the key concepts that are revisited again at key stage 4 in more breadth and depth.
Pupils build upon their knowledge of key beliefs to allow them to consider the influence religious beliefs can have on religious believers. Pupils can then take this deeper understanding further and form considered analysis and evaluation of these key beliefs and practices and the impact on a believer’s life.
The Year 7 course involves the study of:
- Beginnings - this topic introduces pupils to the concept of religion, and what it means to be part of a religious community. Pupils consider the school ethos and mission statement and what it means to be part of a Catholic community.
- The Bible – during this topic pupils develop an understanding of the importance of the Bible for Christians and Catholics today. Pupils develop their understanding of the structure of the Bible, and the different genres it contains. There are opportunities for pupils to consider the Bible’s relevance in society.
- Creation and Old Testament stories – Genesis stories which form the foundation of our Christian faith, consider the question of showing faith in God.
- The person of Jesus –the life of Jesus, incarnation, resurrection. Jesus as messiah and saviour. How can the teachings of Jesus influence our lives today?
- Prayer – how can praying lead to belief in God, what is the purpose of prayer today? Aids to prayer e.g The Bible. Catholic Prayers and their meanings.
- Buddhism – how does this religion compare to that of Christianity? What are the basic beliefs and practices?
The Year 8 course involves the study of:
- The People of God – key religious figures which have featured in the Bible and other religious texts (making comparisons between these where overlaps happen). People who have put their faith in God and been faithful to Him.
- Judaism – a study of beliefs and practices, building on the knowledge from the previous topic about Abraham and Moses, being key founders in the Jewish faith.
- Storytelling and New Testament stories – next chronological step following the teachings of Judaism, considering the New Testament, and the differences between the stories told by Jesus and those from Old Testament. This makes connections between the year 7 topic of Old Testament stories and the Bible.
- Sacraments and vocation – considering links between the events of Jesus’ life (studied in year 7) and the topic of the ‘People of God’ studied earlier in the year. (New topic 2019/2020)
- Social injustice – thinking about the issues with justice in society today, making links between these issues and how as Catholics we can help to overcome these issues, link to the teachings of Jesus and the 10 commandments as learnt in previous topics. Links to the topic of vocation and how we can put our vocation into action to overcome these issues.
The Year 9 course involves the study of: (in preparation for changes to GCSE specification for this cohort)
- Christian living – pupils are giving opportunities to consider key moral and ethical issues which face the world today, considering the key issues like wealth and poverty, the work of Catholic charities like CAFOD and other issues such as abortion and euthanasia.
- Islam: beliefs and teachings - pupils consider the foundational beliefs of Muslims and what these teachings do to influence their actions and behaviours.
- Pilgrimage – historical beliefs about places of pilgrimage and concepts of miracles. Based on the beliefs and practices of both Christians and Muslims, places of pilgrimage both faiths visit. Consideration of what can be gained from visiting these places.
- Islam – practices – how do the beliefs of Muslims affect their behaviour and actions within their faith? Religious festivals. These topics have been previously studied at GCSE, however we are changing GCSE specifications in September 2020 with this cohort therefore covering these topics as our world faith.
- The Church and its mission – considering beliefs about the Catholic Church as the Body of Christ and People of God and how the Catholic church came to exist. This is a transitional unit in preparation for the Catholic Christianity GCSE.
How will the subject be assessed?
At key stage three, assessment is on-going by the means of continual formative assessment which takes place in lessons and homework via a variety of methods. Assessment questions, complement the Eduqas/Edexcel style of questioning and reflect the NBRIA age related standards are used to build upon their skills from key stage 3 while familiarising pupils with the skills needed at key stage 4. Summative assessment takes the form of end of topic tests and assessments, these can use assessment style questions and other more creative approaches to assessment.
Current KS4 curriculum (year 10 and 11)
By the end of key stage 4 pupils will demonstrate a deeper understanding of Christian and Islamic beliefs, teachings and practices and how these can differ depending on denomination, where relevant pupils carefully consider the beliefs of Catholic Christians first. Pupils will be identifying places of religious significance around the world and the importance of those historically and as places of pilgrimage.
Pupils will confidently articulate justified opinions on ethical issues, giving religious, non-religious and personal views. Pupils will be able to explain in detail how religious teachings in both Catholic Christianity and Islam can be applied to contemporary moral issues such as euthanasia, abortion, abuse of the world and the use of capital punishment. They will know how religious organisations support the global problems of injustice and poverty and link religious teachings to these issues. Pupils will be able to confidently articulate justified opinions on issues giving personal, religious and non-religious views.
Eduqas GCSE RE:
At key stage 4, until July 2020, all pupils follow Eduqas GCSE Religious Studies Route A. (as previously given permission for by Salford Diocese as part of pilot scheme). Pupils start with GCSE Islam Beliefs, Teachings and Practices, and then study GCSE Christianity Beliefs, Teachings and Practices in year 10, and begin looking at Philosophical and Ethical studies in the Modern World in Year 11.
The pupils will sit three exams at the end of Year 11:
Component 1: Philosophical and ethical studies in the modern world (2 hour exam) - 50% weighting (based on two religious beliefs)
Component 2: Christianity (1 hour exam) – 25% weighting
Component 3: Islam (1 hour exam) – 25% weighting
A scheme of learning has been developed to ensure that all skills and subject knowledge from key stage 3 is built upon so that pupils are prepared appropriately, covering all the subject content in a logical sequence fulfilling the assessment objectives:
AO1: Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of religion and belief*, including:
• Beliefs, practices and sources of authority
• Influence on individuals, communities and societies
• Similarities and differences within and/or between religions and beliefs
AO2: Analyse and evaluate aspects of religion and belief*, including their significance and influence
(These are built within the NBRIA age related standards that are used throughout key stage 3)
* The term ‘belief’ includes religious and non-religious beliefs as appropriate to the subject content requirements.
During this course, pupils are given opportunities to explore the fact that religious traditions of Great Britain are, in the main Christian, but they are also diverse and include other faiths such as Islam. This also includes non-religious beliefs such as atheism and humanism.
Pupils are also given opportunity consider to philosophical and ethical studies in the modern world, looking at many current real-world issues. Pupils can develop their ability to construct well-argued, well-informed, balanced and structured written arguments, demonstrating their depth and breadth of understanding the subject, consistently linking in prior knowledge from KS3. Pupils are given the opportunities to actively reflect, investigate and make meaning of relationships, the world, life and death, good and evil, human rights and of God.
How will the subject be assessed?
At key stage four, informal assessment is on-going by the means of continual formative assessment which takes place in lessons and homework via a variety of methods. Summative assessment takes the form of end of topic tests which are then used formatively. Pupils sit up to three internal assessments in formal conditions (PPEs) and these are used to inform additional learning support strategies.
Formal assessment at the end of the course is through the Eduqas examination board.
Edexcel GCSE RE:
At key stage 4, from September 2020, we will be studying GCSE Edexcel religious studies A, studying Catholic Christianity and another world religion (Islam).
A SOL has been developed to ensure that all skills and subject knowledge from key stage 3 is built upon so that pupils are prepared appropriately, covering all the subject content in a logical sequence fulfilling the assessment objectives:
|Pupils must:||% in
|A01||Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of religion and belief, including:
|A02||Analyse and evaluate aspects of religion and belief, including their significance and influence||50%|
(Again, these are built within the NBRIA age related standards that are used throughout Key Stage 3)
During this course, pupils will study for three examination papers.
Paper 1: Catholic Christianity – 1 hour 45 minute exam – 50% weighting
This area of study comprises a study in depth of Catholic Christianity as a lived religion in the United Kingdom and throughout the world. There are four sections: beliefs and teachings; practices; sources of wisdom and authority; forms of expression and ways of life. Pupils should compare and contrast the areas of belief and practice within Catholic Christianity with wider Christian perspectives.
Paper 2: Judaism/ Islam – 50 minute exam – 25% weighting
This area of study comprises a study in depth of Judaism/ Islam as a lived religion in the United Kingdom and throughout the world. There are two sections: beliefs and teachings; practices.
(It is still not confirmed whether we will have permission to continue to deliver Islam at GCSE)
Paper 3: Philosophy and ethics – Catholic Christianity – 50 minute exam – 25% weighting:
This area of study comprises a study in depth of aspects of philosophy and ethics in the context of Catholic Christianity as a lived religion within the United Kingdom and throughout the world. There are two sections: arguments for the existence of God; religious teachings on relationships and families in the 21st century.
The significance and importance of the various beliefs, issues and practices to Catholics today should be explored throughout the two sections. This should include reference to how the Bible informs a Christian’s understanding of the topics and how approaches to the issues are underpinned by philosophical arguments and ethical theory as applicable. Pupils will be expected to study Catholic Christianity within the context of the wider British society, the religious traditions of which are, in the main, Christian. Pupils should recognise that Catholic Christianity is one of the many religions and world views in Great Britain, which include Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Sikhism and non-religious views such as Humanism and atheism.
This knowledge may be applied throughout the assessment of the specified content. Pupils should compare and contrast the areas of ethics and/or philosophy within Catholic Christianity with wider Christian perspectives and non-religious views as outlined in the content below. Pupils should also recognise that within Catholic Christianity there may be more than one perspective in the way beliefs and teachings are understood and expressed. Common and divergent views within the wider Christian tradition in the way beliefs and teachings are understood and expressed should be included throughout, including reference to Orthodox, Protestant and other Christian traditions.
How will the subject be assessed?
At key stage four, informal assessment is on-going by the means of continual formative assessment which takes place in lessons and homework via a variety of methods. This assessment takes place in lessons and homework. Summative assessment takes the form of end of topic tests which are then used formatively. Pupils sit up to three internal assessments in formal conditions (PPEs) and these are used to inform additional learning support strategies.
Formal assessment at the end of the course is through the Edexcel examination board.
You need to be able to work well as part of a team as well as on your own.
Enrichment and/or extra-curricular activities
• Multi-faith day
• Year 9 health day
• Guest speakers (TBC)
• RE ALS (additional L
• learning support)/intervention for year 11 – Thursdays 3-4pm
• Trips abroad – pilgrimage to Rome (TBC)
• YSVP group
• Community links – visits to Roughlee Care Home
Next steps (College, University, career)
What can the subject prepare me for?
There is a range of vocational qualifications (such as BTECs, NVQ/SVQs and diplomas) linked to religious studies, including:
• Travel and tourism
• Health and social care
• Uniformed public services
• Legal studies
There are some apprenticeships associated with religious studies such as:
1. Arts, media and publishing, e.g. exhibition guide, visitor services support
2. Leisure, travel and tourism, e.g. tourist guide, travel advisor
3. Health, public services and care, e.g. community support worker
4. Education and training, e.g. learning support assistant
Academic subjects – such as A levels, University
- You can study religious studies at A-Level, and/or at Undergraduate level in many academic institutions. Related subjects include health and social care, geography, law, history, classical civilisation, sociology, philosophy, psychology, government and politics, communication and culture.
Skills and qualities - from studying religious studies
- Problem solving
- Some jobs particularly require problem solving skills and creative thinking to recognise problems and their causes, to identify a range of possible solutions and then assess and decide the best way forward.
- You’ll need to be able to tolerate waiting, delay, or frustration without becoming agitated or upset. Some jobs require lots of patience such as dealing with customers or clients who may be upset or unwell, and job roles where you have to explain or repeat information or instructions.
- You’ll need good reading and writing skills. This could include a good standard of spoken and written English, and good knowledge of spelling, punctuation, and grammar.
- Interpersonal skills
- You’ll need listening and speaking skills, as well empathy to build friendships and ensure good working relationships.
- Any student who is considering going into air cabin crew, law, medicine, teaching, police work, or academic professions will need good grades in GCSE RE.
Subject results are available upon request.
https://www.gcsepod.com/ (Useful for GCSE Eduqas Route A)
https://senecalearning.com/ (Useful for GCSE Edexcel Specification A)
https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/examspecs/z3xvfcw (GCSE Eduqas Bitesize Revision – Useful for Component 1 - Philosophical and Ethical Studies in the Modern World)
https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/examspecs/z68sjhv (GCSE Eduqas Bitesize Revision – Useful for Component 2 – Christianity and Component 3 - Islam)
https://www.eduqas.co.uk/qualifications/religious-studies/gcse/eduqas-gcse-RS-spec-full-from-2016.pdf - Link for GCSE Eduqas Route A Exam Specification
https://qualifications.pearson.com/content/dam/pdf/GCSE/Religious%20Studies/2016/Specification%20and%20sample%20assessments/Specification-GCSE-L1-L2-Religious-Studies-A-June-2016-Draft-4.pdf - Link for GCSE Edexcel A Exam Specification – Catholic Christianity