Humanism for schools

There’s been a Suffolk Humanist on Suffolk County Council’s SACRE (Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education) for years – John Aldam, who was a member of the BHA’s Education Committee before we founded our group, was a SACRE member. When he wanted to quit, Margaret Nelson was co-opted in his place. She contributed to the development of the new Suffolk Religious Education syllabus that was introduced in September 2007. It includes Humanism and other secular life stances. Some may anticipate problems with teaching children about Humanism, for the following reasons:

  • Many who teach RE are non-specialists, of whom some may be unfamiliar with Humanism.
  • Unlike most religions, Humanists don’t have rituals and festivals to base lessons on.
  • Humanism may be falsely considered ‘too difficult’ for younger children.

We hope you’ll find that it isn’t difficult to teach children about Humanism, mainly because of its relevance to their lives and experience.

The British Humanist Association provides resources for teachers on its new schools website.

For KS 3-5, Team Video provides an excellent CD-Rom/DVD resource pack called ‘Why Atheism?’.

If you need any help, or would like to suggest the sort of help you’d like to find here, please get in touch.

Of course, we’re completely opposed to the teaching of Creationism or “Intelligent Design” as science (or even as religion) in UK schools. For a comprehensive explanation of Darwinian evolution versus Creationism and ID, see “We’re all monkeys”.

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