Welcome to Life/RE

Welcome to the Outwood Academy Portland Life department. In this department, we strive to provide an outstanding education for all students in Philosophy, Ethics and Religion, Citizenship studies and Personal, Social and Health Education. We provide a comprehensive and holistic curriculum preparing students for their life in the wider world.
Students learn about a range of religious beliefs, global, national, social and personal issues, they develop an understanding of British values and there is a key focus on social, moral, spiritual and cultural development.
Students receive one hour of curriculum time each week in year 7-10 along with exciting homework projects to enhance their learning.

In Philosophy, Ethics and Religion students cover a wide range of topics such as Ultimate Questions, The Holocaust and key religious beliefs, teachings and practices. During these lessons students are encouraged to not only examine and develop their own views but to also consider the views of others in a non-judgemental and safe environment.
To develop Citizenship skills students examine key topics such as British Values, Identity and Diversity, The Law and Multiculturalism. In lessons students are encouraged to consider their place in the wider world and develop both the skills and knowledge base which will be vital in their future. Students also receive opportunities to practice ‘Active Citizenship’ in which they can write to various politicians, organisations and charities about the issues which are important to them.

Personal, Social and Health education is an opportunity for students to develop self-awareness and understanding, we cover topics such as interacting with others, online safety and key skills such as budgeting and career development. Current government regulations outline the delivery of Sex Education in across the curriculum, however in preparation for the proposed changes in legislation for statutory content in 2020 to ensure that all students have a more broad, balanced and inclusive Sex and Relationships education (SRE), we are already making changes to the delivery of these topics to include topics relevant to young people in 21st century Britain such as sexting, relationships, LGBTQ, FGM and grooming. We believe that young people need to be fully prepared and educated about the issues, dangers and opportunities which they may face in their adult life to enable them to make, safe and considered decisions in the future.


Name Role
Natalie Parkin Head of Humanities

Years 7 & 8

In Year 7 & 8 curriculum students first address key areas of PSHE which are vital in enabling them to settle into a new and sometimes disorientating environment with people they may not know. Following this, students consider their role in wider society by thinking about life in modern Britain and how they can make a change in the world. They will complete a piece of active Citizenship on a local issue of their choices during this time. After this students will consider their rights and responsibilities in finances and how to budget effectively. Next students will focus on key philosophical and ethical questions before considering major world religions and then focusing on Christian beliefs in preparation for AQA GCSE (9-1) Religious Studies option at KS4. This is followed by considering non-religious world views with a focus on Humanism before moving on to philosophical and religious ideas about the afterlife in Y8. To further prepare students to choose AQA GCSE 9-1 as an option subject students will then look at Judaism and then apply this knowledge of religion when looking at the Holocaust, before returning to Christianity to develop their knowledge and understanding. The year will be completed by looking at the Law and Media and the impact these have on individuals and society before finally reflecting on the ability to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Unit 1
Unit 2
Unit 3
Unit 4
Unit 5
Unit 6
Unit 7
Unit 8
Year 7 Getting started Life in Modern Britain Active citizenship Money Philosophy and Ethics Introduction to World Religions Christianity 1 Humanism
Year 8 Life After death Judaism Holocaust Christianity 2 Laws Media Healthy lifestyles

Years 9, 10 & 11

Students begin this year by continuing with PSHE from Y8 and consider aspects of mental health and how to deal with stress in preparation for a very challenging time in their life. They will consider drugs, alcohol and smoking and the dangers these pose before considering sex and relationship education. Students will compete the year by considering how democracy works in the UK and then crime and punishment, making connections between each. At the end of the year they will return to the study of Christianity as further preparation for the option of GCSE Religious Studies which can be taken as a one year option in Y11. Y10 begins by thinking about philosophical questions, the existence evil in the world and Sikhism. Students will then consider the issues raised by gangs, hate crime and knife crime, Human Rights and how to stay safe through topics such as FGM, forced marriage, trafficking and wealth and poverty. They will finish the year thinking about their career choices, CV writing and interview skills to prepare them for life after their time at Outwood Academy Portland.

Unit 1
Unit 2
Unit 3
Unit 4
Unit 5
Unit 6
Unit 7
Year 9 Mental Health Drugs Sex and relationships UK democracy Crime and punishment Christianity
Year 10 Philosophical thinking The Problem of evil Sikhism Gangs, hate crime and knife crime Human rights Stay safe Careers
If you would like further information about the topics, themes or assessment for this course please contact: Natalie Parkin.

RE in years 9, 10 & 11

GCSE Religious Studies is an optional subject for students who will follow the AQA (9-1) specification. In this course students develop skills such as evaluation and analysis helping them develop and consider their own views along with the beliefs and views of others. It supports students’ knowledge of multicultural Britain, while also having an emphasis on Christianity as the major religion in the UK.

During the course students cover the teachings, beliefs and practices of two world religions; Christianity and Judaism before examining philosophical and ethical topics and applying their knowledge of religion to these as well as also considering and developing their own views. Topics covered include abortion, euthanasia, when does life begin, evil and suffering, miracles, war, pacifism, weapons of mass destruction and the death penalty. The topics covered allow students to critically examine their own beliefs while considering the positions of others and the impact such beliefs can have on individuals and the decisions they make.

This course is 100% examination.

The full specification can be found on the AQA website

AQA (9-1) GCSE Religious Studies
Christianity Judaism Thematic Studies
The Nature of God The Nature of God Theme B: Religion and Life: Origins and value of the universe and human life, including abortion, euthanasia and the use of animals.
Jesus Christ and Salvation Beliefs about life after death, including judgement and resurrection
Worship and Festivals The Covenant and the Mitzvot Theme C: The existence of God and Revelation: Philosophical arguments for and against the existence of God, the nature of the divine and revelation, including evil, suffering and miracles.
The Role and Meaning of the Sacraments Key moral principles including justice, healing the world, charity and kindness to others
The Role and Importance of Pilgrimage and Celebrations The importance of the sanctity of human life Theme D: Religion, Peace and Conflict: Religion, violence, terrorism and war and religion and belief in the 21st century including pacifism, weapons of mass destruction and Holy War.
The Role of the Church in the local and Worldwide Community The relationship between free will and the 613 mitzvoth
The Importance of the Worldwide Church Public acts of Worship Theme E: Religion, Crime and Punishment: Religion, crime and the causes of crime, religion and punishment, including corporal punishment, the death penalty and forgiveness.
Rituals and their significance
Festivals and their importance for Jews in Great Britain today