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Year 8 RS

Guidance for parents

What will students be studying in Religious Studies this year?

In Year 8 students will consider three religions in depth: Judaism, Christianity and Islam: they will consider the similarities and differences between them, including their shared history and values. This will give students a firm foundation for studying these religions further at GCSE. Students will also begin to study ethical issues such as female leadership in the church. An Interfaith workshop in enrichment week involving speakers from a range of faiths and backgrounds enables students to bring this year’s learning together.

What are the major assessments this year?

Each topic features an assessment at the end and these can take the form of presentations or written pieces of work. There is also a one hour end of year examination in which students are assessed on their knowledge of a range of the topics covered across the year.

What will the current performance grade be based on, and what do the levels mean?

The current performance grade is based on all of the assessments and homework that they have completed to date. For each topic a detailed ‘Levels sheet’ is provided with information on how students can access the higher levels. A generic description of the levels and what they mean can be found here.

What should my daughter do if she feels she is struggling in the subject?

In the first instance, she should speak to her subject teacher. She should try to identify specific areas of the subject which she is finding to be a challenge so that we can offer targeted support.

How can I support my daughter in Year 8?

The best way to support Year 8 students is to talk to them about their studies. An important skill that we try to develop in Year 8 is the ability to justify their opinions so you could challenge them to provide further support for their view. Discussing any ethical issues (for example, extremism or sexual discrimination) or philosophical issues (such as “why are we here?” or “what evidence is there for God’s existence?”) would be beneficial. Newspapers, television and radio are a great source of topical issues and there are often documentaries covering ethical or religious issues which are very accessible.

What kind of independent work should my daughter be completing?

Students are given regular independent homework to complete and this should be recorded in your daughter's planner. When students’ homework and assessments are marked, they receive a number of targets and corrections and students should be proactive in improving their work. Students should keep abreast of contemporary issues in the news and discuss these topics with their friends and family outside of lessons.

Who can I contact for further advice and information?

Please feel free to contact the Head of Religious Studies, Ms Harvey, on lharvey@newsteadwood.co.uk if you have any concerns about your daughter’s progress in Religious Studies.

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