Your Way / Other Ways
Steps in Learning Strategy
Testing Your Knowledge
Putting Your Knowledge to Work in the Classroom
Sharing Your Materials
Having a religiously neutral situation for all the "citizens of
your classroom" is a worthwhile goal, but you probably won't reach
that goal unless you purposefully work to do so. Good intentions
will not be sufficient because being evenhanded concerning religion
is challenging for teachers, even for those who are well informed and well
The realm of ultimate beliefs
presents special hurdles. This lesson will briefly apprise you of some of the difficulties that
are inherent in this particular terrain. It helps to know and
consider them in advance so you can better frame your own pursuits.
Also, you will want to give due consideration to your own
"positioning" in the kaleidoscope of human worldviews. A
teacher needs to recognize that assumptions are intrinsic. They come along
with any worldview position. You must ever be mindful that
you are looking through a "lens of your own" as you perceive the
worldviews of others.
Gain awareness of some hurdles in you way as you seek
Become somewhat more attuned to your own "worldview lens"
Accept the challenge of tough territory to tread toward
Commit to taking up the challenge.
- Study a three-part informational reading, Challenges for Educators
- Identify your premises and assumptions, and incorporate
information into your thinking (activity)
- Check the feedback
Go to the Test Review and look at the statements that guide your review. Each statement
is identified by relevant steps in the learning strategy.
Are you comfortable you can demonstrate your
understanding? If not, restudy as necessary until you are confident.
Go to the Test to take Test
2, then print out your answers.
Go to the Self-Check
page and check your
TERMS: realm of ultimate beliefs [new] \\
religious neutrality \\ religiously neutral \\
neutral \\ worldview \\ worldview
Some Interesting Options for Your Consideration:
Reading: Chapter 7, "Bridge Building: A New Multireligious America," in A New Religious America,
by Diana Eck
Professor Eck's summary commentary on her "Pluralism Project" offers
easy-to-read overview of recent immigration, emerging religions, encounters across religious
groups, and molding of immigrants into Americans and consequent reshaping of the
Activity: Community Diversity Survey.
Get a feel
for the "portion of the worldview kaleidoscope" present in your
own community by investigating your locale and seeing how many different
worldview groups you can identify [Hint: Use the local Yellow Pages (under
“Associations, Clubs, Religious Organizations, etc.) and the alternative
newspapers that may be found in local bookstores, coffee houses, theaters,
Note: In this mini-course you will need an Acrobat Reader from time to
time. If your computer is not currently set up to read Adobe .PDF files
the reader is available for fee at Adobe. Click the button and look in the
lower right corner of the Adobe site.
Web: Concept Lessons 1 - 5 in Different
The approach one takes to individuals who differ somehow
from our presumptions and expectations is an issue that concerns teachers
and students alike. Examine five lessons of a series that addresses conformity and nonconformity as it relates to interplay in human
groups. The material seeks to foster open-mindedness toward (rather than
initial disapproval of) people who depart from
Have you prepared any lesson plans, activities, bulletin board materials,
handouts, etc. of your own that would match one or more of the
goals of this lesson? Please share them with others. Your name will be attached to the materials unless you prefer to
Teacher-Prepared Classroom Materials. No lessons have been submitted yet—you
can be the first.