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Religious Education

At Chaucer we deliver an engaging modern course which is both relevant and challenging in our context. 

Our mission is to deliver a meaningful, diverse and engaging curriculum, which includes the exploration of religion, ethics and global views. We expose students to a broad spectrum of ideas and teachings and encourage them to be open minded, analytical and curious. By learning about other people, the way they think and the way they live we seek to take our students beyond their everyday experiences.

Each unit of work poses a 'big question'; something to spark intrigue and inspire an immediate response. Students then go on to explore the question through a range of religious and non-religious perspectives. We use artefacts, images, original texts, stories and news articles to create a rich pool of knowledge from which students can express their personal thoughts and opinions. 

We believe the confident command of language to be essential to the development of independent and critical thought so we dedicate curriculum time to both extended reading and structured writing. Key texts are hand written to ensure they are accessible without compromising on depth or complexity of content. 

Our curriculum gives us many opportunities to explore social, moral and cultural issues with our students. All ideas, opinions and values are treated with the respect that arises from a deeper understanding of the world and its rich variety of perspectives

KS4 RE curriculum delivery overview

Every student in Y10 and Y11 is entitled to 40 hours of RE provision each year. At Chaucer this is divided into the following timetable for KS4 students:

Year Group

Tutor Time

3 x Drop down days HT2, HT4 & HT6

Life curriculum RE


37 x 20-minute sessions throughout the year = 15 hours

15 hours of bespoke learning of the 6 main religions of the world how we can recognise and celebrate their positive impact in our local area.

HT 3 7x 65-minute lessons

Y11 (37 hours due to GCSE exams)

30 x 20-minute sessions throughout the year = 12.5 hours

15 hours of bespoke learning of the 6 main religions of the world how we can recognise and celebrate their positive impact in our local area.

HT 4 7x 65-minute lessons

In KS4 RE studies at Chaucer we strive to develop in all students a knowledge and understanding of religious and nonreligious world views to foster a greater appreciation of the rich, culturally and religiously diverse world in which we live. We aim to support students in developing their own spiritual, moral and social awareness by increasing their understanding of the complex issues and challenges faced by people from all walks of life within their own city and beyond. It is our ambition that students leave Chaucer school with a greater understanding of their own place within society, both local and global. 

Our pupils will learn key beliefs from major world religions, with particular focus on the main religious tradition of the country in order to reflect on the historical context of Great Britain. Our ultimate goal is to create and nurture an intellectual curiosity in pupils to develop a love of learning and an understanding of the role of the subject within the curriculum.

Key Stage Curriculum Content

In Key Stage 3 we explore one ‘Big Question’ each half term. We use artefacts, videos, stories, images and factual texts in order to search for answers. Every unit requires us to do a ‘Big Read’ and is assessed when students complete a ‘Big Write’. We examine each question from a range of world views including Christianity, Atheism, Islam, Buddhism and Judaism – we also enjoy a ‘Wild Card’ lesson each half term where we look at the Big Question through a different and often unusual lens.

Our Big Questions this year…

Year 7.

  • Is Sheffield a religious city?
  • Where, how and why do people worship?
  • How does Sheffield celebrate?
  • Who (or what) is god?
  • Can we talk to god?
  • If we pray, does god listen?

Year 8.

  • Does life have rules?
  • Where do we come from?
  • Why are we here?
  • What happens when we die?
  • If he exists, why does god let bad things happen?
  • What does God look like?

Year 9.

  • Are we responsible for other people?
  • Are people good or evil?
  • Are some things always wrong?
  • Can I be ‘me’ and still be religious?
  • What does love mean?
  • Can a scientist be religious?

Key Stage 4 Curriculum Content

At GCSE students can opt to study Citizenship. Citizenship is a vast subject which helps students understand and engage with the world around them.

Students study a range of important ideas and continue to ask challenging and interesting questions. These include:

Living together in the UK

  • What is identity?
  • How have communities developed in the UK?
  • The History of Human Rights
  • What are democratic values?
  • How does local democracy work?

Democracy at work in the UK

  • Who runs the country?
  • How does Parliament work?
  • How does the government manage public money?
  • How is power shared?

Law and Justice

  • What is the law?
  • How does the justice system work?
  • Is crime increasing in society?

Power and Influence

  • What power and influence do citizens have?
  • What role does the media play?

Students are also required to take part in a project where they are carry out research, interpret evidence, plan and collaborate. They develop problem-solving skills and campaign for something that means a lot to them.