Develop skills in leading students in discussion regarding their religious beliefs and practices, as well as the beliefs and practices of others.
Be aware of examples of best practices in teaching about religion.
Develop the ability to present multiple religious perspectives in a fair or neutral way.
Highlight at least 2 key points from the reading that addresses each of these competencies
Below are two quotes from page 12 of the AAR Guidelines for Teaching About Religion. This quote really relates to “developing skills in leading students in discussion regarding their religious beliefs and practices, as well as the beliefs and practices of others.” It is also represents a way for me to “develop the ability to present multiple religious perspectives in a fair and neutral way.”
“Talking about religion can touch the depth of someone’s identify, causing some discussions to feel like an attack, especially when based on misinformation and stereotypes. Therefore, it is imperative to foster a climate of tolerance, respect, and honesty by encouraging other students to:
Move away from making generalizations toward more qualified statements.
Examine how their judgments may impact others, and
Explore ideas and ask questions without fear” (12).
“Not everyone in the class is expected to agree. But students should understand that:
Accurate representations of traditions reduce the misunderstandings arising from false generalizations, bigotry, or valorization of a particular religious or non-religious worldview” (12).
The quote on page 18 is just a reminder that I will need professional development in order to be prepared to teach religion.
“In order to effectively include the study of religion in K-12 curricula, teachers must be prepared to do so” (18).
These are best practices that I picked up on within the reading.
“ Brainstorming quickly can help students identify their most basic associations, those rooted in long experiences and snap judgment” (12).
By reflecting on their own preconceived ideas about religion, students can also think about how their ideas may stereotype and misjudge the beliefs and practices of others, including that of their own peers in the classroom or school” (12).
“Ms. X decides to do an oral storytelling unit… Each day she reads aloud a Native American story from different tribes to her class” (13).
“Students conclude by creating their own “Explorer’s Journals” in which they describe, through writing and illustration, the similarities and differences they saw between expressions of Islamic life…” (13).
“Mr. B and his class then discuss various places and objects that are central points in their own lives (school playground, churches, grocery stores, temples) and then write their own stories about all the different types of people who come there every day (14).