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Yewlands Academy


Curriculum timetable:


Year 7

Year 8

Year 9


 Worldviews and Ultimate Questions

Rights and Responsibilities



Person of Jesus








Life of Muhammad






Social Justice


Skills and Knowledge to prepare for GCSE


Curriculum overview:

The Ethics department at Yewlands aims to promote religious understanding and appreciation of people from all backgrounds. Ethics equips pupils to meet the circumstances of living in modern society and become good citizens. It promotes a sympathetic understanding of religions, including both those that are locally represented and those which have been formative in the lives of people in the history of the world. Pupils will be challenged with questions about belief, values, meaning, purpose, and truth, enabling them to develop their own attitudes towards religious issues. They develop analytical and critical thinking skills, the ability to work with abstract ideas, leadership, and research skills. Ethics provokes challenging questions about the meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God, the self and the nature of reality, issues of right and wrong, and what it means to be human. Pupils are given regular opportunities for reflection, discussion, and debate.


KS3 information:
During KS3 Ethics at Yewlands, pupils study a wide variety of topics. They explore diverse religious beliefs God, faith, history of religions, the origins of the universe, life after death, morality, and different denominations within a religion. Pupils then look at ways of expression for religious believers including religious identity, worship, and rituals. As well as delving into responses to ‘Big Questions’. These questions are examined through the lens of different viewpoints and include topics such as; where we come from, where are we going, is it ever right to do wrong, and the different denominations within faiths. The Religious Studies curriculum also covers non-religious worldviews as well as religious relevance in the 21st Century.


GCSE information:

Year 10: World Religions: Islam and Christianity

  • Topic 1: Christian Beliefs- this looks at specific Christian ideology such as the Trinity, the Crucifixion and the Fall.
  • Topic 2: Christian Practices - developing Christian Beliefs through looking at how beliefs are applied in real life, looking at worship, expression of faith and pilgrimage.
  • Topic 3: Islamic Beliefs- Muslim beliefs looks in more detail at the specific beliefs of Sunni and Shi’a Muslims.
  • Topic 4: Islamic Practices - Living the Muslim Life/ Muslim practices develops the Muslim Belief component looking at how Muslims live their lives daily, looking at beliefs in practice. This looks at what it means in practice to follow the Five Pillars in real life.


Year 11: Thematic studies

  • Theme A: Relationships and families- pupils consider the nature and purpose of the family in the 21st century, including religious attitudes towards divorce and remarriage.
  • Theme B: Religion and Life- looking at issues of life and death in Islam and Christianity. It explores the concepts of creation, and scientific explanations for the existence of the world, before looking at life after death, abortion, and euthanasia.
  • Them D: Religion, Peace and Conflict- looking at how Jihad links into other Islamic beliefs. This also links into Key Christian teachings and the central concepts of justice and forgiveness.
  • Theme E: Religion, crime and punishment- looking at Christian and Islamic views on such issues as retribution, justice and rehabilitation.

Knowledge in Ethics:
At Key Stage 4, pupils study the beliefs and practices of Islam and Christianity in depth. The curriculum then takes a more thematic approach across Islam, Christianity, and non-religious worldviews. Pupils explore matters of life and death such as the origins of the universe and the origins of humanity. This thematic approach continues by looking at crime and punishment. Pupils study lawbreakers and types of crime, attitudes to suffering, and forgiveness. Pupils go on to study family and relationships. This includes marriage, relations outside of marriage, and gender. Pupils also study peace and conflict. This looks at violent and non-violent protest, war and pacifism.  


How to prepare for GCSE:
By the time pupils reach Key Stage 4, they will already have encountered information about world views, religion and key concepts relevant to their GCSE. The content will follow a similar structure to Key Stage 3 studying diverse religious beliefs and considering ‘big questions’. In the Religious Education specification, AQA outline key skills that are assessed in each paper, which include; demonstrating knowledge and understanding of religion and beliefs and analysing and evaluating aspects of religion and belief, including their significance and influence. Students will have already practiced these skills throughout KS3. In order to prepare students for GCSE, there will be a focus on retrieval; within the classroom and an expectation on completing home learning tasks using their Knowledge Organiser. As well as developing their analysis skills through extended writing in lessons and assessments.


A-level and Beyond:
As a department, we consciously prepare our students for Religious Education at A-level. In class we promote a deep knowledge of world religions and ethics. It is a versatile subject which is useful to entry into many careers. The study of Religious Education and Philosophy can lead to careers in areas such as; medicine, law, politics, education, civil servant and counselor.


Useful GCSE revision materials: 


Paper 1:




How to answer exam questions?