Religious Studies

The calling of humanities is to make us truly human in the best sense of the word

Religious Studies at Beech Hall School reflects the fact that, although the main religious tradition in the UK is Christianity, it is also important to give pupils an understanding and knowledge of the importance of various religious and non-religious views within society. Religion has had important influences on communities and culture, not only in the UK as a multicultural society but as part of the global community in which we live.

In year 7 pupils will be introduced to the reasons why RE is studied and the sort of skills it is designed to teach and careers in which it is useful.We explore the importance of tolerance and respect towards beliefs different to our own and examine the reasons why some believe in God and others don’t. Different places of worship are explored and the concepts of a multicultural and a multi-faith society. We make a graph on the results of a class questionnaire on the beliefs of each class. RE explores ultimate questions such as, Does God exist? What is the purpose of life? Religious views about the origins of life and nature of creation compared to scientific, non religious views.

In the spring term, pupils will study the origins of Judaism and the importance of Abraham, Isaac and Moses. We will explore the significance of Holocaust Memorial Day which occurs in January each year and go on to compare the life of a Reform Jew and Orthodox Jew and see how they are different in their worship, beliefs and practices. Students then go on to complete a research project on Freedom which will investigate occurrences of modern day slavery and issues such as child labour.

In the summer term students will research the Life of Jesus of Nazareth. What evidence is there that Jesus existed? They will look at his baptism, teachings, miracles and the events leading up to his crucifixion, resurrection and ascension to heaven and examine key Christian beliefs about these,

They will examine different Rites of Passage: Birth, coming of age, marriage and death that different religions follow. Finally, they will research Humanism ( a non religious belief system) and will have the option of researching a religion of their choice and presenting it to the class.

In year 8 pupils will study Hinduism and debate whether this is a monotheistic or polytheistic religion. They will look at the influence of the caste system and how Ghandi campaigned for equal rights for the “Untouchables”. They will look at beliefs in reincarnation, karma and moksha and how Hindus worship at home and in the Mandir.

In the spring term students will study Sikhism and Equality. They will learn about Guru Nanak, the 5ks and how Sikhs worship at home and in the Gurdwara. Sikhism believes it is a religious duty to serve society and equality is of fundamental importance. Students will do research on how an individual has worked to achieve this e.g Malala to achieve an equal education for girls, Martin Luther KIng, Nelson Mandela or Ghandi to improve race relations and end injustice.

In the Summer term pupils will study Buddhism, evil and suffering. The causes of suffering will be explored, the life of the Buddha and his quest to end suffering will be examined. The life of a Buddhist monk and the Buddha’s teachings about the Noble eightfold path as the way to end all suffering will be debated as will the situation of Buddhists in Tibet and the events that led to this. Finally, students will research the work of a religious organisation that aims to end suffering in the world and present it to the class.

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“Beech Hall is a fantastic place of learning that embraces diversity, equity and inclusion. I wish I was a child again so I could also benefit from its incredible offering! “

Beech Hall School Parent – Summer ’23