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 Better Education on Religion: For Ourselves and Our Students 
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Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:40 pm
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So, from all of the posts around some of the topics I've been posting on lately, one thing I've noticed is that the majority of my classmates are Christian. Some are not, but the majority are.

The question I'm posing in this topic is how do we as teachers better educate ourselves on other religions, and better educate our students on tolerance of other religions.

I find it would be very hard to teach tolerance to a child about a religion, if you as the teacher know absolutely nothing about that religion! It's hard because we're supposed to keep church and state separate, but religion is a big factor in some kids lives, and not just the Christian children.

How can we as teachers better educate ourselves on other religions, and in turn better educate our students on tolerance of those religions, without saying the forbidden word "religion"!

It's a touchy subject in schools, and it's one that I've noticed on this board. I know I always comment from a Christian standpoint and view, but it's because I don't know about any other religions truly, so I feel I should only truly speak on something I know about. How can we as teachers use this to help our students when it comes to religious tolerance or even religious hatred in our classrooms?

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Emily Adams


Tue Nov 21, 2006 7:16 pm
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Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:41 pm
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Sometimes it takes being exposed to other religions and belief systems. My neighbors are part of BSU (the Baptist Student Union) and attended a forum last week where a panel of aetheists and other non-Christians talked about their perception of Christianity. I told them that they should have put me on that panel! ;) but I had other plans anyways.

On your 'separation of church and state' comment, I'll repeat some of what I said on your gay marriage post:

"The spirit of our Bill of Rights is just as delicate to me as the spirit of the Bible. Yet the difference ... is how religion may change a person's convictions but it may not necessarily affect other people; and how government may not change a person's convictions, but government does necessarily affect other people's lives. My hope is that we, as teachers, see the difference between defending religion by not "prohibiting the free exercise thereof" yet imposing our convictions on other citizens by banning research, abortion or marriage for religious reasons, because there should be "no law respecting an establishment of religion". It is a delicate distinction, and I personally believe, from my reading of the Gospel, that Jesus abused neither government nor religion while he was on Earth."

In the classroom, these "laws" become our policies as teachers; for example, our policy on excusing students from class so they can attend their religious Holydays. I believe it also includes listening and responding to parents who question Christmas or other Christian holidays that American teachers often integrate into their curriculum.

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Justin Pittman


Tue Nov 21, 2006 11:59 pm
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Joined: Mon Dec 30, 2002 4:05 am
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Location: Appalachian State University
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Point of fact:

There is nothing wrong or forbidden about the word "religion". In fact, World History is supposed to cover world religions but most often does not. Why is that, do you think?

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Gayle Turner


Tue Nov 28, 2006 1:45 pm
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