“Religious Studies gets right to the heart of who we are, what we believe, and how that makes us think and act.”
Religion is an essential part of human life. No human communities in the past, and few today, are without religion in some form or other. Although many of us deny we are religious, in most cultures, we are prepared for religion in the same way that we are prepared for breathing, speaking and eating. Helping children understand what that means in practice is at the heart of Religious Studies.
We aim to help children understand and appreciate what difference faith and belief makes to individuals and society. Knowing and understanding the Christian message in the bible is central to Religious Studies, although our studies are by no means limited to Christianity, we look at a number of world religions from Islam though to Judaism.
No question is too big, for example, Does God exist, and what is right and wrong? As our children get older we explore the morality of Capital Punishment, Euthanasia, Crime and Punishment and War. Where possible we look at the very real issues facing people today. We don’t shy away from acknowledging that religious belief has been used as a reason to do terrible things as well as good.
As the children learn from religion, as well as about religion, they reflect on their own experience, how they interpret what they learn and how they apply their learning. They develop skills in application and evaluation, weighing up questions of identity and meaning, and what is true, and what truth claims are based on. They are encouraged to consider their own reaction to the beliefs they encounter, as well as developing their own sense of concepts such as awe and wonder.
The subject is taught throughout the school; in Year 7 and 8 Children are prepared for Common Entrance and Scholarship exams.