Why does an education in Religion and Worldviews (R&W) matter?
04 May, 2021, Dr Kathryn Wright
Voices of children and young people.
This was the question that many teachers posed to their pupils last term for our inaugural Blog Competition. We had an amazing number of entries and it is clear that everyone has a view on Religion and Worldviews (or Religious Education). At the end of this blog you can see the names of all the winners, but here I want to draw out some of the key themes and creative ways in which pupils want to advocate for our incredible subject.
An education in Religion and Worldviews enables us to understand diversity in our world.
The diversity of our complex world was a recurrent theme. Bloggers spoke of everyone being different, having different worldviews and the importance of appreciating this. Many felt that studying Religion and Worldviews brought a genuine, real and authentic understanding of the lived experience of being a religious or non-religious believer. For many blog writers, Religion and Worldviews is about the nature of humanity; understanding who and what we are as human beings with all the complexity and divergence that this brings.
An education in Religion and Worldviews increases our knowledge, providing global and historical perspectives.
The importance of knowing about and understanding religious and non-religious worldviews came through very strongly in many of the blogs. Young people spoke about the importance of understanding historical contexts to comprehend the way things are today. They highlighted the interweaving of history with religion. Many felt that knowledge acquisition led to respect and to challenging some of the media stereotypes of some worldviews.
An education in Religion and Worldviews supports development of positive values.
Bloggers talked about the many values they felt an education in Religion and Worldviews promoted. These included peace, respect and empathy. A number talked about the way in which this was modelled in their schools by safe spaces being created to talk about controversial issues.
An education in Religion and Worldviews helps you with your future career.
From the youngest to the oldest, bloggers highlighted the value of Religion and Worldviews in terms of future career paths; professions highlighted included law, international development work, counselling, mental health services, diplomatic roles and journalism. Many more spoke about the importance of the subject for simple daily interactions with people they meet.
An education in Religion and Worldviews offers something more…..
For many of our bloggers though the subject offers something more…. It sparks the imagination and curiosity, it empowers and opens doors of communication, it unlocks a tapestry of ideas and enables young people to develop their own patchwork of views. It gives each one of them confidence to talk about religious and non-religious worldviews in the public sphere.
For our bloggers, an education in Religion and Worldviews is considered vital so they are prepared for the real, complex society in which we all live. They want to be able to navigate this world and begin to make sense of it. They want to have knowledge, understanding and skills, but also values and attitudes which will enable them to be confident, free- thinking participants in this ever-changing global landscape.
CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL OUR WINNERS!!
Key Stage 1
Areilla, Newbold and Tredington Primary School
Abhijot, Clifton Primary School
Harnoor, Clifton Primary School
Namanpreet, Clifton Primary School
Ishana, St Andrews (Barnsbury) Church of England Primary School
Key Stage 2
Soha, Old Trafford Community Academy
Catherine, Lythe Church of England Primary School
Nancy, Newbold and Tredington Primary School
Emily, St Andrews (Barnsbury) Church of England Primary School
Sohani, Clifton Primary School
Farzad and Idris, Old Trafford Community Academy
Avineet, Clifton Primary School
Hunter, Pickhurst Junior Academy
Key Stage 3
Matthew, Thomas Gainsborough School
Abby, Saint Francis Xavier School
Arwen, St James’ Senior Girls School
Maxwell, The Bishops’ Blue Coat Church of England School
Cara, King’s Rochester Preparatory School
Skye, Prenton High School for Girls
Maisie, The Morley Academy
Brooke, Prenton High School for Girls
Niamh, The Bishops’ Blue Coat Church of England High School
Vanessa, Goldington Academy
Ella, Lincoln Christ’s Hospital School
Olivia, St Mary’s Catholic School
Key Stage 4
Scarlett, Fulston Manor School
Caitlin, Goldington Academy
Lucy, Cox Green School
Maisy, Hagley Catholic High School
Meadow, Saltash Community School
Jordan, Saint Francis Xavier School
Lily, Albany Academy
Pennie, St Hild’s Church of England School
Zama, Bradford Academy
Key Stage 5
Ashton, Old Hulme Grammar School
Ella, Highworth Grammar School
Jessica, Highworth Grammar School
Anna, Hagley Catholic High School
Megha, Langley Grammar School
Reva, Langley Grammar School
Philippa, Old Hulme Grammar School
You can read all of the winning blogs on RE:ONLINE
Kathryn Wright, on behalf of the Judging Team 2021