Year 8 Religion and World Views: BUDDHISM 2. The Four Sights of Siddhartha Gautama

Today’s learning skills: imagining/ reflecting/ measuring impact
Target time: 60 minutes

Welcome to week 2 of exploring Buddhism. Now we know who Siddhartha Gautama was and how his birth marked him out as someone special. Today we’ll find out about the four sights that changed his life forever…

Look at the painting on the left. It shows Siddhartha Gautama’s birth. What can your remember of that story by looking at the painting? Grab a family member or a pet and explain what the painting means! Teach them about Siddhartha’s birth story.

Today’s learning: The Four Sights

Why did Siddhartha leave his life of luxury in the palace?


I can: pull all my new learning on Buddhism together into a piece of writing, using my Buddhism notes to help me.

So that:
I can showcase how much I have learned about Buddhism!


Blank paper/ pen or pencils/ colours if you want them OR set up a word document or powerpoint if you want to work on a computer

The ‘I ROCK AS I ALREADY KNOW!’ quick quiz: check yourself out

1.Siddhartha Gautama is a person. Later in his life he would be better known by another name. What is that name?

The Buddha- which means the ‘one who knows’ or ‘enlightened one’.

2. What animal did Siddhartha’s mother dream about before he was born that was a symbol of greatness?

A white elephant.

3.What ability did Siddhartha have when he was born that other babies do not have?

He could already walk!

4.Where was Siddhartha, the man who would become the Buddha, born?

He was born in Northern India in a place called Lumbini.

5. If Siddhartha grew up in a palace, what job did his dad do?

His father was a king, a great leader.

6.A man called Asita visited Siddhartha’s family when he was a baby and said he would either be a religious leader or what?

A great leader or a king one day, like his own father.

7. Asita, this prophet, said that one thing would stop Siddhartha from becoming a king one day, as it would change him so dramatically. What was that thing?

He said that if Siddhartha saw suffering, outside the palace walls, that he would change his destiny and become a holy man.

1. Well done! Now, set up a new thinking page

Last week we made a title page and a page about Siddhartha as a baby. So we have 2 pages so far.

Today- set up a new page. Either on your computer as a powerpoint or word document or a paper page.

Put today’s lesson title at the top of it. ‘THE FOUR SIGHTS OF SIDDHARTHA GAUTAMA’. (You’ll find an example page I’ve made further below).

2. Thinking about Siddhartha’s life in the palace…

As a young prince, Siddhartha grew up in a palace. His life would have been luxurious

Find or draw a picture of a palace. If you’re working on paper you might google a picture & print it & stick it on NEAR THE TOP. (We will have other stuff to add below it so leave room).

Next to it- write down AT LEAST 10 things you expect life would be like living there. Example: having servants to tidy your room for your and run your bath!

3. So, what were the Four Sights?

Let’s read this next part of Siddhartha’s journey and watch a video about it as well.

WARNING: there is an image of a dead body in the film clip. If you don’t want to watch it, that’s fine. It’s the same information as you’re getting in the story sheet below.


On your paper/ document, you are going to record what the 4 sights were. You can make them into a 4 panel comic strip. Include pictures (stick people are fine!) and a written description to describe what’s going on in each scene. You can include speech bubbles if you want as well. OR you can create a simple image that combines all 4 sights. Anyway that works for you. You could even make them out of playdoh if you’re feeling creative…

Hey, which of the 4 sights is missing in this picture here?

Task 5. THINKING ABOUT THE IMPACT OF THIS EXPERIENCE- positive? Negative? My questions…

Your last task! On that same sheet you’ve been working on, you are going to do some thinking. You are going to think in 3 directions!

1.What was positive and good about what Siddhartha experienced by seeing these 4 sights? Example: he saw the reality of life for the first time.

2.What was negative and what bad impact could it have on his life and his family’s life? Example: his dad’s not going to be happy!

3.And best of all- if you could have interviewed Siddhartha just after he’d seen these 4 sights, what QUESTIONS would you have asked him? Example: Did you speak to the holy man? What are you going to do next?

Try and record AT LEAST 3 for each category.

Here’s an example page that might help you shape what you’re doing…

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Today we’ve finished our learning about Buddhism! Well done you! You’ve actually written a small book and used your expertise on Buddhism to write a film overview! You have brought two brand new things into the world that didn’t exist only 7 weeks ago! How amazing is that?

Wishing you a gorgeous summer holiday! By the way, if you want to do more on Buddhism over the summer- there will be another blog next week with some creative tasks for you, like tattoo designs and flag making!


Simply send your work to your teacher. And remember, all these pages are making a booklet week by week!