My understanding of Religion and Worldviews is to inspire students to think beyond themselves and to create a space where they are encouraged to have a dialogue regarding the world they live in, and to broaden horizons to include the wider world. Through this scheme of work, I aim to help students understand how the views held by individuals and groups may shape individual outlooks. I hope to create more respect and tolerance for differences, promote and encourage engagement by creating a safe space in which students can ask and answer questions, enabling a healthy discourse between students using literature to […]
A discussion of strategies for implementing discussion within A Level Religious Studies lessons, with a particular focus on creating a scheme of work to support the delivery of the Gender and Theology topic of the OCR A Level specification. The final scheme of work includes six strategies for encouraging discussion and considers the effectiveness of these strategies. These include the importance of effective questioning, balloon debates and parliamentary debates, among others. Resources are available on request.
My Farmington Scholarship has consisted of an investigation into the possibilities arising from an anticipated move to whole cohort non-examined Religion and Worldviews (R&W) in community schools and academies following the most recent change of GCSE examination. Non-exam based R&W at KS4 affords a freedom which is liberating for many, but comes with problems. Non-specialist teachers and lack of curriculum time pose difficulties, so that ‘New Direction’ in R&W will have to embrace circumstances which are not ideal. And yet I argue that non-examined R&W is the ideal opportunity for maturing KS4 students to develop their ‘personal knowledge’ through carefully constructed […]
Our pupils are faced with many difficult real-life questions and problems: relationships, life and death, questions of identity and selfhood, meaning making and symbolisation. Applying psychoanalytic themes to how we notice the subjective curriculum in the groups we teach enables us to make greater sense of our pupils’ learning experience. This includes an appreciation of how our pupils’ interiority relates to both the group and to the teacher, how we contain emotional responses with reference to Wilfred Bion’s concept of ‘container-contained’ and how we aim to nurture emotional and cognitive growth in the widest sense.
Currently deputy head at Reading School and a Methodist minister, I have also worked as a Prison Chaplain, Youth Worker, with young offenders and young people not in education, employment or training. In this report I look at the influence of leadership on student outcomes, and explore the notion of what effective education really is.
My research was inspired by my increasing concern for the knowledge base and varying views on the importance of RE. I studied The Commission on Religious Education (CORE) (2018) to review the recommendations made and to address any gaps in teaching at my setting. I knew through experience as a teacher, the many benefits that RE can have but as I reflected on the suggestions in The CORE, national and local events occurred which gave me a clear direction my research needed to take. We are in the midst of a global pandemic, COVID-19 and following a racist attack, we […]
This study seeks to ascertain whether, and to what extent, xenophobia exists in our student body. For the purposes of this study, xenophobia (and racism) is conflated with negative attitudes towards immigration (though of course these terms have idiosyncrasies). It also seeks to clarify whether the fractious relationship between Britain and immigration as expressed in the media’s narrative is echoed or at least perceived in the students’ mindset. Within the literature review also, clear examples and conclusions of systemic and institutional racism are said to exist in the education system. As such, this research sought to clarify whether such ideas […]
With the introduction of compulsory RSE and with a fragmented cultural climate on sexuality, why is it perhaps more important than ever to teach the full spectrum of Christian views on same sex relationships in the RE post primary classroom? This research includes three sections: The spectrum of Christian views on same sex relationships. The current cultural climate on LGBTQ issues. The role of RE within this wider debate. The report also includes a link to a video presentation (15 mins) which summaries the key findings.
The hypothesis of this case study is that a diverse , primary community school can provide a model for happy co-existence. It tries to identify more precisely some initial themes as to what makes diversity work and to provide a tentative route map for society at large. I was interested in this and also considered it pressing because in the last decade there have been increasing pressures on the idea of a harmonious, diverse Britain. In sharp contrast, from my own experience – having worked until recently in a very diverse school as teacher and headteacher for 21 years – […]