SRSP 11-16 Topic 1 Unit 1 – How does science help us make sense of the world?


This unit seeks to give students (and teachers who are not science teachers themselves) an understanding of how science works and how science makes sense of the world.

At this time when science is held in the highest esteem by western societies, and scientific progress is seen as an end in itself, students are encouraged to consider whether these are givens and if they are are ‘right’ and ‘reasonable’.

Students examine differing points of view, and are encouraged to form reasoned personal opinions. In this series of lessons, students are introduced to topical issues in the science and religion debate, which may be explored in greater depth in other related topics.

This unit consists of 4 lessons and is suitable for students aged from 14 to 16 years

Key Questions

  • What do scientists do?
  • Is the way in which scientists are portrayed in the media accurate?
  • Give reasons for your answer. What is science? What does it cover?
  • Why do you think that Psalm 111 v2 was placed above the door of the Cavendish laboratories in Cambridge?
  • Does science have any underpinning premises?
  • If yes, then what are they, and how do they compare with the underpinning premises of religion?
  • What analogies and models are used in science?

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Unit Resources

Unit Overview (Word)


Lesson 1

Lesson Plan: Is science a sacred cow? (Word)

Student Resource Sheet 1: What are scientists like? (Word)

Student Resource Sheet 2: How do scientists work? (Word)

Teacher Res. Sheet 1: What are scientists like? (Word)

Teacher Res. Sheet 2: How do scientists make sense of the world? (Word)


Lesson 2

Lesson Plan: What is science? Changing ideas (Word)

Student Information Sheet: Changing times, changing ideas (Word)

Student Worksheet 1: Changing times, changing ideas I (Word)

Student Worksheet 2: Changing times, changing ideas II


Lesson 3

Lesson Plan: Making sense of the world (Word)

Student Resource sheet: Pattern and order (Word)

Student Worksheet 1: Basic beliefs (Word)

Student Worksheet 2: Basic beliefs [gifted and talented] (Word)


Lesson 4

Lesson Plan: Explaining the difficult (Word)

Student Resource Sheet: The universe is like? (Word)

Student Information Sheet: Explaining the difficult (Word)

Student Worksheet: Positive and Negative (Word)

© 2011 LASAR (Learning about Science and Religion)