Assessments in RE should be done through Formative assessments. This means assessing during lessons. this can be done through ways such as written work, drama, class discussions and questioning.
To ensure that assessment opportunities take place they need to be planned in in advance. And to plan effectively you must make good assessments in previous lessons.Both these aspects work together in harmony and both should be used to their full potential.
This session was about looking at educational visits and how they can benefit learning in RE. We also looked at the pros and cons of having visitors in the classroom.
Bringing someone into the classroom can give information that comes directly from a primary source and can engage children more. It can excite them and up their interest levels. It will also allow children to ask questions but it is vital that these are thought up before the visitor comes in so that the teacher can ensure they are suitable. It is also important that the teacher checks what the visitor is going to talk about and they also need to make sure that the visitor talks about appropriate material.
Before moving onto talking about educational visits we were asked to talk about visits that we had been on as pupils. This helped to think about what makes a trip good or bad and why they are beneficial.
We then split into groups and planned a visit to a specific location. We chose Exeter Cathedral. We came up with different ideas about what pupils could do their on the day, this included ideas such as drawing windows or creating a piece of creative writing. There is also a virtual tour on the website. this could be visited before using ipads or the smartboard for the pupils to plan their visit.
This session involved us talking about how IT can be used to benefit RE.
The three key ways in which IT can help with RE are : Enhancing teaching and learning. Improving administration and planning. Improving assessment and reporting.
Although only the first way directly helps the children the other two ways will help with RE as a whole and the children will reap the rewards of this in their learning. An example of this is using the internet to gain lesson ideas from other teachers and to share your own successful lessons/ideas.
As parents and carers are interested in knowing how their children are performing at school teachers could set up a blog or write on the school website letting them know what their class are currently studying in school and how they can be assisted at home.
Using IT in RE can allow pupils to view video clips and information online to gain a greater understanding about the topic that they are studying. It can have many different benefits if used effectively.
During this session we had to teach our activities that we planned last week as part of the directed task. Ours was to plan something for Pedagogical principle 3. We came up with looking for similarities between the children’s experiences and the specific religious experience.
Drama techniques such as hot seating and conscience alley can be used effectively in RE as they require pupils to come up with opinions and put themselves in other peoples shoes.
This session was aimed at looking at AT2 in more depth.
To learn from AT2 effectively pupils need to make personal and impersonal evaluations.
Personal evaluations are about pupils thinking about themselves where as impersonal evaluations are where pupils evaluate and judge other religions and look at what we can learn from them. this often requires us to look beyond the obvious and lead to higher level discussions.
For effective teaching to take place lessons should involve both AT1 and AT2 together.
This session started by doing an ice breaker activity. This involved picking a noun to describe yourself and partner. This could easily be transferred over to a classroom where a new teacher or pupil has joined. It could also be used if a class is having fallings out. Pupils could then have to pick a positive noun to describe their partner.
We then looked at the importance of RE. Although RE is not in the national curriculum it is considered to be important and what is taught is chosen by each individual county. There are two parts of RE that must be taught to pupils. These are AT1 and AT2. AT1 involves learning ABOUT religion and beliefs whereas AT2 involves learning FROM religion and beliefs. AT2 is an opportunity to talk and debate and there are usually no definitive answers for this part.