March 2011 has been designated Celebrating RE Month. Schools have been encouraged to plan special events and activities to highlight the subject and to remind us all how valuable and interesting it is. It's all the more vital to be raising the profile of good Religious Education in light of the current proposals to remove RE from the baccalaureate curriculum.
Breathe and Orison (my two jobs) are both resources which support and feed into the RE curriculum for schools, as well as touching on aspects of citizenship, SMSC, SEAL, PSHE, sociology and so many other things. As a result, this next month is full, to say the least. I'll try and keep this updated throughout the month.
Celebrating RE Month, Day 1: Belief and Ethics Day, Robert Napier Sixth Form Centre, Gillingham
The year 12 and 13 students at Robert Gillingham had a two-part Belief and Ethics morning, with each group experiencing Breathe as well as using Bob Marley and U2 to open up discussion on how to express personal spirituality, writing mission statements to help apply this to life at school and globally as well as individually.
It's a privilege to be able to be part of students taking time to engage with the spiritual side of life. The personal reflective side of RE is important, taking it beyond learning history and fact and giving young people the skills and the time to engage with this stuff personally.
A glimpse of what we got up to...
This image shows one student's response to one of the activities, looking at uniqueness and individuality. Users select 6 adjectives to describe themselves, adding their own description in the middle of the ring. Without the student's own word, there are over 400 million potential combinations of words so the chances of any other student choosing exactly the same are small to say the least.