Welcome to the coloured glass classroom! We hope to provide you with lots of creative ideas and resource links to help you engage the young people in your religious and Christian education classes. This blog is sponsored by the Anglican Schools Commission of the Anglican Church Southern Queensland.

23 May 2013

Amnesty International Annual Report 2013


The Amnesty International Annual Report 2013 has been released today. It provides information on human rights abuses from around the world for 2012. This is a valuable for the religious education classroom particularly when covering topics to do with social justice.

There are a variety of ways the report can be explored. The report itself can be downloaded as a pdf. It is over three hundred pages long and provides a profile of the human rights abuses of 159 countries. This includes information on such issues as:

  • women's rights
  • the death penalty
  • refugee, migrants and displaced persons
  • police and military violence
  • freedom of expression and media
  • indigenous peoples rights
  • torture and other 
  • violence against women and girls
  • housing rights
  • family violence
If you are looking for an easier to digest format, there are summaries on the Amnesty website shaped around the World by Region or you can look at a report on an individual country. These could be used by having individual students investigating a particular country and reporting back to their classmates.

A video is available on the Australian site which also gives a summary of some of big issues occurring around the world.There is also a global update that focuses on key human rights abuses that have occurred in 2013 by month.

One other resource I noticed on the website was a latest facts and figures sheet that would be suitable way to orient students to the topic of human rights abuses.

13 May 2013

Conceptual Enquiry in Primary RE


I am about half way through "Primary Religious Education - A New Approach" by Erricker, Lowndes and Bellchambers. While this is not a new book there is much in it that commends itself to religious education in Australia and which has yet to be taken up and implemented.

Recently on this blog I posted about how many students come to the classroom with very few of the concepts that we actually wish to explore with them. This book provides a conceptual approach to religious education and provides a way in which students may explore religious concepts starting with conceptual ideas that they already have. I really like the model they outline in the book and can't wait to write some units based around it.

I am also fascinated by the discussion around "learning about religion" and "learning from religion". Again while these concepts have been employed extensively in England they are helpful to the Australian context and provide a useful way of thinking about what we are doing in religious education classes.