The aim of this vibrant and inclusive department is to promote the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of individuals and communities within our society and help students develop the ability to navigate through the world amongst their peers, now and in the future. No matter their beliefs, practices or family background, students are given the knowledge to understand the complex world around us and are helped to debate, discuss and question a range of religious, ethical and moral issues in the safe, non-judgemental environment.
Students are encouraged to challenge and explore religious and ethical ideas, helping them develop the skills they need to continue into further education and beyond. The department makes a significant contribution to the cultural, social and moral developments of our students.
Religious Studies lessons include a variety of teaching and learning techniques including discussion work, games, art, drama, empathy and extended writing. Students are encouraged to question and discuss their ideas and are given opportunities for independent and group learning. Trips have included a Sikh Temple and the Jewish Museum in Manchester, with Sixth Form students taking part in the ‘Lessons from Auschwitz’ project. Visiting speakers regularly visit the school to speak to GCSE and A-level students about religious and ethical issues.
Religious Education at Bridgewater involves the study of Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, Sikhism and Islam. Students study several ‘key questions’ each year involving the investigation and comparison of several of these religions. These questions include ‘The Big Story’ and ‘How and Why People Worship’ (Year 7), ‘How Martin Luther King should be remembered’ and ‘A church for all Christians’ (Year 8), ‘Is there Life after Death’ and ‘What is Identity’ (Year 9).
GCSE Religious Studies
GCSE students follow the Edexcel syllabus, studying ‘Religion & Ethics’ and ‘Religion, Peace & Conflict’. This course includes the study of key religious beliefs and practices within Islam and Christianity, and the study of moral and ethical issues such as ‘Marriage & the Family’, ‘Prejudice & Discrimination’ and ‘Crime & Punishment’, from a secular and religious perspective.
AS and A-level Religious Studies
This course is focused on ethical issues and philosophy. Different ethical theories such as Situation Ethics and Utilitarianism are studies and applied to modern ethical dilemmas such as ‘Human Cloning’, ‘Embryo Research’ and ‘Animal Testing’. Different philosophical ideas are studied as well as studying Christian practices and beliefs in modern contemporary society. For further information, please see the Sixth Form section of the website.