We help students understand that religion has been, and still is, a significant factor in human experience and behaviour, by studying contemporary ethical issues alongside religious teachings from the world’s six largest faiths. RS continues to make an enormous contribution to the new emphasis on British Values, a government initiative. RS has always been a curriculum area where values are explored in depth so questions about how these values relate to different religions, and how they relate to our national life, are not new.
The scope for cross curricular study stimulated by RS is huge and we exploit this fully at Kimbolton School.
First to Third Forms – compulsory for all pupils
In the First Form, we study Judaism as a preparation for looking at how life in the UK is influenced by the historical and cultural heritage of Christianity.
In the Second Form, we study aspects of Hinduism and Islam through journeys. We then look at how people of faith have changed the world in some way, using examples from famous historical figures to contemporary social reformers.
In the Third Form, we begin with a module on the relationship between science and religion and how both are involved in the quest for answers to life’s big ‘unknowns’. This is followed by a look at how philosophical ideas change behaviour and determine human responses to the ethical issues facing us in the 21st century. Our topics include: medical ethics, punishment, war, the environment and consumer ethics.
In the final weeks of the Third Form we study Buddhism as a philosophy as this is gaining popularity in the UK and picks up on the ethical issues covered previously.
Fourth and Fifth Forms – optional GCSE subject
We follow the AQA Beliefs, Teachings and Practices with Applied Ethics course. Pupils are required to study two world religions for the first sections, Christianity and Hinduism, and study Applied Ethics through Christianity. As a major influence on our history, culture and values in the UK, Christianity is the obvious choice for an examination of beliefs and practices, and relevant to the human decision-making, law creation and organisation of the society in which we live. Hinduism is the oldest of the major world religions with origins shrouded in mystery but is a determining factor in the growth of India as a major player on the world stage; indeed, there are signs that a more strict adherence to Hindu principles is being encouraged by the government. It is also interesting to look at the contribution of Hindus in the UK to our society.
All RS students are encouraged to go to the after-school Philosophy Society meetings.
Regular Trips, Visitors and Competitions
- RS pupils study aspects of worship in Peterborough Cathedral as part of the joint Humanities’ trip to Peterborough in the First Form.
- Second Form pupils visit Cadbury World (in a joint trip with the Geography Department) to study the practical applications of Quaker philosophy.