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How To Teach Islam?


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Next term I'm going to be teaching about Islam and I'm already worrying about it as I don't feel my RE has gone very well this term! It's a year one class and we have to focus specifically on the Islamic idea of God so the idea of seeing which aspect of Islam the children are interested in is not going to work.

 

I have no idea where to find resources or how to make it at all relevant to the children's lives. It's a none denominational school with 100% white British pupils in a white British community (no mosque down the road to visit in other words or Muslim parents/children to call upon!) Does anyone know of any good resources or ways I could teach this so it isn't completely dull and irrelevant to the children?

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Have you talked to your RE coordinator - this unit must have been taught before so what resources does the school have that have been used? Did someone else on the staff teach this year group before - again did they use anything in particular? I think it's important to connect what you plan to do to the whole school curriculum map so that the children get the relevant skills that they are going to build on in future years, not just "content" from activities. If you can root the desired learning into that bigger picture then the actual activities may be easier to define?

 

However, if you start from the idea of working from the current frame of reference and moving out from that then I would maybe start with the children's own understanding of what God means to them and then look at how this is really no different to any other faith group! One issue could possibly be the very negative stereotyping that children may see/hear from home etc re Islam so similarity rather than difference might be an appropriate way to look at it??

 

Cx

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Your first stop is your RE Coordinator who should have a copy of the locally Agreed Syllabus for RE. Within this there will be the units to follow and hopefully some unit plans for you to use and adapt to your class. I agree with catma that it is really important for children to challenge possible stereotypes around Muslims, and all the more reason where the children are in a predominantly white christian community.

If you look on your LA's website there should be a copy of the Agreed Syllabus but if not a Google search will throw up different ones from around the country.

There are some big books in a series about faith http://www.amazon.co.uk/Muslim-Faith-Big-B...s/dp/0237520141 which can be used to show how a child lives their faith at home, and using 'My Christian Faith' you can show how the similarities outweigh the differences. In my experience most schools have these somewhere.

You might also find some help here

http://www.reonline.org.uk/ks1/

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I don't know where about in the country you are but in Birmingham there is 'Sacre'. Sacre has a number of teaching points for some religions from FS to Year 6. My son's secondary school also uses sacre to deliver R.E. If Sacre isn't useful then a starting point for teaching could be 'The Five Pillars of Islam'.

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Do you have a Mosque nearby if so a visit to the Mosque would be a good starting point and then I am sure the children would ask questions. Or one of your parents could come in and talk about what being a Muslim means.

 

Emilia

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Just to clarify:

SACRE stands for Standing Council for Religious Education and it is they who are responsible in law for providing the Agreed Syllabus. Each LA has a SACRE who have to agree a syllabus in line with national guidelines. This is then implemented in schools within the LA. Faith schools may choose to be exempt from the locally agreed syllabus and use their diocesan syllabus. Some do some don't.

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Thanks, I will double check with the RE coordinator. However the RE was very Christianity based last year and has just been overhauled this year to reflect other religions so I'm not sure there is actually any previous plans about Islam and certainly not for year one. There are some Islamic artefacts though which I will be using hopefully.

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I'm sure your co-ordinator will have a copy of the syllabus and something you could use for now. In the meantime I have found something which may help if you scroll down a few pages

http://www.kingston.gov.uk/mso23cef.pdf There are a lot available on google.

There is also a recent document on Teachernet which does not contain individual units but does explain about RE in the curriculum.

http://www.teachernet.gov.uk/teachingandle...ts/re/guidance/

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I have some books from a series called "Quaran stories for little hearts" - theses are well known stories also told in the Bible that your pupils may know, but from a different perspective. The illustrations do not show people, as some Muslims believe this would be disrespectful to Allah as the creator of human life. Soemthing like this would be an interesting starting point.

 

To be honest, I think that the topic may be a bit beyond Year One? i think looking at Muslim festivals or stories would bemore relevant to them.

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