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 February 2016

Ed Puzzle - Using Video in the RE Classroom

Rarely is stuff put on this blog unless it is directly related to religious education. More space should probably be given to discussion on educational technology and its use in the RE classroom. When a colleague (big shout out to Lana) told me about EDpuzzle I was intrigued and when I looked at it I was delighted. I am sure there is lots of this stuff out there but I am just ignorant of it. So if you have specific stuff you use please drop me a comment so I can post it here and share the wisdom.

EDpuzzle is a simple way to  adapt and use videos in the classroom, Videos can be drawn from a huge range of providers including Youtube and TED. You can clip them, do voice-overs, ask questions. It is easy to use and the interface is very simple. Check out the video below or just go to edpuzzle.com

16 February 2016

Designing Units with a Conceptual Approach

Some time back I did a brief blog on the book "Primary Religious Education - A New Approach" by Erricker, Lowndes and Bellchambers. In it they outline a conceptual enquiry approach to religious education. Although it has been around for a good five years "Living the Difference - The Agreed Syllabus for Hampshire, Portsmouth and Southhampton" is well worth a look at if you are interested to see how this conceptual approach appears as a syllabus.

Even if you haven't bought the book by Erricker, Lowndes and Bellchambers you can learn a lot about the approach from this syllabus. Of particular interest is information on how the conceptual approach might be used to design units. Below is a brief sketch of the steps but for a fuller understanding look at either Living the Difference or the book (which also has a secondary version)

From Living the Difference

Students familiarity with a concept may determine where the process might begin. For instance a concept like community which may be very familiar to students might mean starting at the communicate step. If on the other hand the concept is something like Eucharist or Umma the process would begin at enquire.

In brief each step as described in the book is as follows.

Communicate - students communicate their own response to the concept drawing on their personal experience. What are their ideas and perspectives on it?

Apply - students think about how the concept applies to them and how it might apply in different contexts and with different people.

Enquire - students explore the meaning of a concept in a more detailed and complex way. The might consider its characteristics.

Contextualise - students consider the concept within the context of a particular religious tradition.

Evaluate - students evaluate the significance of the concept for the religious people investigated.

A great summary of the process is provided in the book:

"If we divide the cycle into two halves, with Communicate and Apply pupils are drawing on their own experience of the concept. Within Enquire and Contextualise they engage with specific examples of others' interpretations of the concept. Within Evaluate they draw both together by demonstrating their understanding of the interpretation of others" (Erricker, Lowndes and Bellchambers 2010 p,64)

"Primary Religious Education - A New Approach" by Erricker, Lowndes and Bellchambers. Routledge 2010

9 February 2016

The RE-searchers: a new approach to RE in primary schools

This looks like a great resources out of the University of Exeter.
This resource presents a new approach to Religious Education (RE) in Primary Schools. It is called ‘the RE-searchers approach’. The RE-searchers approach encourages pupils to think about the significance and effectiveness of different methodologies and methods of enquiry in RE. To make these accessible to young children, we have personified some of them as cartoon characters.
Individually these characters are called Debate-it-all Derek, Ask-it-all Ava, Have-a-go Hugo, and See-the-story Suzie, but collectively they’re known as the ‘RE-searchers’. Each character holds different assumptions about religion(s) and advocates different research methods (e.g. questioning and arguing, interviewing and empathizing, participating and experiencing, and narrating and exploring interpretations).
I really like the way each of the methodologies has been personified and the document which you can download here has a lot of explanatory and supporting material.