In Challenging RE, we have identified some key concepts that are explored through the key stages. Below are some illustrative universal human concepts, general religious concepts and disciplinary concepts.
Universal Human Concepts such as:
General Religious Concepts such as:
Each enquiry at all key stages, helps to explore one or more of these concepts
Disciplinary Concepts such as
- Theology - exploring religious concepts and ideas
- Philosophy – asking fundamental questions
- Ethics – theories of morality
- Social Sciences
- Sociology – the study of society and social forces
- Psychology – the study of the mind
- History – the study of the past and its influence
And as pupils mature in their academic development:
- Epistemology – theories of knowledge
- Aesthetics – theories of art and beauty
- Ontology – the nature of reality
- Existentialism – ideas about existence and life-stance
As pupils progress through their education, these can be introduced in an age-appropriate way. Thus, for example, in KS1 teachers can say that pupils will imagine they are a theologian (a scholar of religion) or philosopher (a scholar of ideas), and this will help them to ask those types of question in an age-appropriate way. By the end of KS3 more sophisticated theological and philosophical language is readily used, along with some of the other disciplines.
All content (knowledge of specific aspects of religious and non-religious worldviews such as Bible, Hajj, Passover, Brahman, Sewa and Buddha) can be approached from one or more of these disciplines.
Thus, for example, in KS1, the enquiry about ‘important places’:
- explores and develops understanding of the universal concepts of identity and/or belonging,
- this is done through introducing children to the general religious concept of worship,
- and this is explored through possible religion-specific concepts and content of:
- Church and Synagogue,
- Rituals in the home; Shabbat.
In this way, their learning in the RE classroom is interconnected by the concepts. This is further illustrated in the support materials, along with religion-specific concepts and content by Key Stage.
Religion-specific concepts will be provided separately in the support materials.