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.

30 October 2014

Real Religion: Up Close and Personal

Realia is a term  for real things, concrete objects, that are used in the classroom. Boxes with themed items have been used in language learning classes to help students understand different cultural artefacts. This idea can easily be applied to learning about world religions.

A Realia Box may provide students with an opportunity to see and touch artefacts from a particular religion in order to gain a concrete understanding of each item. This can aid learning and bring authenticity to the classroom.

Begin collecting items that can be stored in the classroom to use whenever needed. It is possible that parents within the school may be able to donate to the realia box. Some items may be bought from specific religious suppliers but may require an explanation for why you might be buying that item and how it will be used.

It is important that all the items are treated with respect. It may be the case that you only allow students of the religious group being explored to open or wear particular items. There may even be an opportunity for students from a particular religion to present and talk about the items in their box if they are knowledgeable about them.

There are website that sell the artefacts in packs such as articlesoffaith.co.uk

More information on using artefacts in Religious Education can be found at the following:

22 October 2014

World Religions on TED

A great video from Ted Ed that gives a summary of some of the basic facts about the five major world religions . More resources for this video can be found at the Ted Ed site: 

1 October 2014

"Religious education too weak in Anglican primary schools"

This is the headline 'The Telegraph' in England ran with, announcing the release of a new report  by the Church of England titled "Making a Difference? A Review of Religious Education in Church of England Schools"

It is interesting that religious education in primary schools was identified as being not up to standard.

For those working in Anglican Schools in Australia: I wonder how close the findings are to your own experiences?

This paragraph in the preface by the Bishop of Oxford stuck out for me.
It is clear to any thoughtful person that no-one can understand the modern world without understanding the place and power of religion. This is true at the global, national and local level. Community well-being depends on a rich appreciation of how our neighbours think and function at the level of beliefs and values. Moreover, RE often provides the only opportunity pupils have to explore their own deepest motivations, their values, disciplines and habits of heart. As they develop further, pupils are stretched thoroughly in their ability to handle texts, to assess evidence and argue a case. At higher levels they have to work on philosophy and ethics, history and politics, as well as the social sciences. RE is the ultimate integrating subject.
It is interesting to contrast this with  A.C. Grayling's call to abolish religious education in England. He is quoted in the article as saying:
I would be loath to treat theology as a serious subject of study any more than I would so treat astrology or the divinatory tarot.
I think Grayling is out of step with the world, while the Bishop is dead on target.

A copy of the report can be found here: