Saturday, 22 June 2013

The Jesus Compass

The Jesus Compass is a little acrostic I've used with some of my GCSE classes to help them respond to ethical questions from a Christian perspective by thinking about the different ways that individuals could be influenced or inspired to behave. The acrostic stands for:

Jesus - Are any of Jesus’ sayings or actions relevant to the question?     
Church - What are the teachings of different Christian churches / denominations?
Obey Conscience - What might an individual Christian’s conscience tell them to do?    
Ministers & Priests - How might a minister or priest advise a Christian to act?

Prayer - How might praying help a Christian to make moral decisions?    
Agape - What is the most loving thing to do?

Saints - How might the lives of famous Christians inspire others to behave?        
Scripture - What Biblical quotations or teachings are relevant?

Partly it's a revision crib to help students remember some of the religious teachings and individuals they have studied who could be relevant to a particular ethical question, and partly it prompts  students to include the religious perspectives that are needed to access the higher grades.

Some of the "points" of the compass are meatier than others of course, but referring to - say - the conscience or agape might be enough to shift a student from a level 3 to a level 4 in the AQA mark scheme. For more able students, it also encourages them to consider a wide range of possible sources of evidence and select the best from them. It's worked well with the GCSE classes I've used it with, and even with the A2 class I've used it with, so I thought I'd share it here.  

I've posted a generic revision sheet for it, and a worksheet version that students can use to focus on a particular question. You can download these as pdfs here and here, or if you have a TES account, as MS Office documents here.

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