TT359: ‘How do people express their spirituality through the arts?’ – To incorporate P4C and enquiry based learning into the Telford and Wrekin new unit plans for RE

Summary: During my Farmington Fellowship year, I have had the opportunity to develop a Philosophy for Children (P4C) approach at the primary school where I teach. My aim was to research ways of incorporating P4C and a more enquiry–based approach into the teaching and learning cycle of a unit of work and to offer colleagues practical ways of getting started by leading P4C sessions with their classes. My initial reason for introducing P4C was to raise the level of questioning in my Year 6 class, from ‘teacher led’ question and answer to more genuine discussion, to develop ‘thinking skills’ ; […]

TT358: Major World Religions and Medical Ethics

Summary: A 13 lesson Scheme of Work on the major world religions views on medical ethics. This SOW was designed for KS5 General RE to replace a section of the previous NOCN course. I gathered research on Buddhism, Sikhism, Hinduism, Christianity, Judaism and Islam’s views on Genetic Engineering, Abortion, Contraception, Transplant Surgery, Euthanasia and Fertility Treatment. I designed the SOW, resources, lesson plans and an assessment. My research is compiled into one document that can be used for a variety of different lessons and age groups. Although the SOW was designed for a Catholic School it is applicable to all […]

TT357: The Influence of Religious Background on Achievement in RS

Summary: This is an investigation of how the religious background of Religious Studies A level students can affect their achievement. Based on the research of around 100 students aged 16-19, the scope of the study has included: 1. A survey of the religious experience, beliefs and practices of RS students, through questionnaires 2. Interviews of a selection of RS students to verify and expand information 3. Analysis of achievement data at AS and A2, related to experience, beliefs and practices, establishing links if they exist 4. Ways in which the findings of the study can assist in the planning and […]

TT356: More than just words and pictures: How can comic books support a richer, more inclusive RE?

Summary: I have spent my Farmington Fellowship investigating the possible ways in which we might utilise comic books in the KS3 and KS4 RE classroom. There is plenty of research currently out there on the religious and spiritual content of comic books (and if you’re feeling fancy, ‘graphic novels’) but none yet attempting to use these materials to support our students to make deeper connections with world religions and their own inner lives. I will be making suggestions as to how and why comic books are a valuable addition to our teaching of RE, sharing the results of my classroom-based […]

TT355: Spirituality, Religiosity and Autism: Towards a definition of autistic spirituality and religiosity and its development through RE

Summary: This paper examines the possibility that people on the Autistic Spectrum experience spirituality and religion differently from their neurotypical counterparts and that, consequently, the development of spirituality as a whole school issue and the teaching of Religious Education to school students with Autistic Spectrum Conditions (ASC) requires specific ASC attuned strategies. The aims and outcomes of this study were to: – analyse the impact of autism on spirituality and in this context on the teaching and learning of Religious Studies/Education; – investigate the appeal of Black Metal Music and its spiritual dimensions on ASC young people; – create relevant […]

TT354: Exploring Prayer with Children

Summary: Working in a church school, one of the mainstays of each day is prayer. Time is given collectively and individually for children to pray, and has been of even more importance at times of stress in the community, for example the loss of one of the children recently. Watching the children “put their hands together and close their eyes” made me wonder what children understand by the word ‘prayer’ and whether this understanding has a development. This development could have implications for the way that teaching about prayer is carried out in schools, but also for how children are […]

TT353: Lost Voices – Meaning of RE in a Nottinghamshire Secondary School

Summary: A research study which explores the meaning of religious education in young people’s lives. The study used a Mosaic approach to investigate students learning in religious education and explored the ideas of cognitive neuroscientists and social constructivists. The study challenges ideas within the Prevent strategy and the reports from Charles Clarke and the 3FF Foundation. The report makes specific recommendations and questions the effectiveness of the latest proposals for curriculum change for religious education arguing this will further marginalise the most vulnerable and disadvantaged students from empowering learning in religious education and contribute to the social divide in education […]

TT352: Spirituality: A vehicle to teach better RE? Or the other way round?

Summary: As a teacher in a primary special school, I know from my experiences in over 20 years of teaching children with barriers to learning, that our approach to the teaching and learning of Religious Education could be better. My aim is to begin to break down some of these barriers by providing opportunities for our pupils to discover what is important and special to them through the context of Religious Education. Through this study I have: • Sent questionnaires to staff and parents at the school; • Interviewed religious leaders from different faiths; • Interviewed an OFSTED inspector for […]

TT351: Inside Out: Raising the profile of RE outside and inside the classroom within a non-faith primary school

Summary: When I started out on my fellowship journey, my research was based around making RE creative and interactive, as well as ensuring that the final lesson, which was then of this creative nature, could be assessed appropriately. This of course remained incredibly important throughout my research, but as to the nature of assessment with levels changing, I decided that I needed to change direction with my research. I felt a bigger need lay in the idea as to how to raise the profile of RE within schools. Therefore, my research focus shifted to exploring creative ways to teach RE, […]

TT350: The Challenge of Engaging Pupils in RE

Summary: Most specialist RE teachers go into the profession because of a love for the subject, the desire to change lives, inspire young people as the future of our nation… And while I’m sure that most of your pupils arrive at class ready to be inspired, the reality for some is that any lesson which involves studying religions is an immediate turn-off. The temptation is to play down the emphasis on religion: highlight the transferable skills; focus on current issues; change the name of the subject – but do these responses really solve the problem? I have massively appreciated the […]