The documents listed on this page relate to the constitutional guidelines for teaching about religion in US public school classrooms. These two documents are pdf copies of pamphlets for distribution to teachers, administrators, and parents.
- First Amendment Center Teachers Guide to Religion in Public Schools
- First Amendment Center Parent’s Guide to Religion in Public Schools (same parents’ document in spanish)
The links below are new sites for First Amendment Center school resources and publications, easier to access than the larger First Amendment Center site which includes many other issues such as press freedom, etc.
- First Amendment Center resources and publications page
- First Amendment Center Religious Freedom Education Project
The American Academy of Religion (AAR) has published a guide on public education about religions at Guidelines for Teaching About Religion in K‐12 Public Schools in the United States (as a PDF), produced by the AAR’s Religion in the Schools Task Force and published in April 2010. The document contains information much like that in the First Amendment Center guidelines, but has much more on teacher education opportunities, approaches from a religious studies perspective, and much more.
The following resources provide comparative information on the major world religions and their public impact in the US, in addition to the last site from the UK:
- The excellent “Religious Perspectives Database” at the Berkley Center at Georgetown University has returned! The comparative survey of issues among the five major world religions, including justice/injustice, wealth/poverty, sickness/health, insiders/outsiders, peace/violence which includes short essays and citations from scriptures is at http://berkleycenter.georgetown.edu/resources/religious_perspectives . There is also a page with links to Topics and Knowledge Resources on these traditions” at http://berkleycenter.georgetown.edu/resources. There are new features being added to the site on a regular basis, and it has been rearranged multiple times. If a link is broken, go back to the Berkeley Center’s homepage at http://berkeleycenter.georgetown.edu to look for the new arrangement.
- Lesson and Readings on Historical Background of the Abrahamic Faiths (as pdf) from the Cities of Light Lesson Set at www.islamicspain.tv. Links elsewhere on the site
- Ackland Art Museum Five Faiths Project, which involves art objects, stories, beliefs and practices, and other features, and is suitable for both elementary and secondary.
- Harvard University Pluralism Project
- PEW Forum on Religion & Public Life – Issues The PEW Forum has a new resource with interactive maps on global migration of religious groups–both in- and out-migration– entitled Faith on the Move at
http://www.pewforum.org/Geography/Religious-Migration-exec.aspx. The PEW Forum has a report on Global Christianity with interactive maps and data, as well as information on Judaism in the US and other affiliations worldwide. The PEW Forum’s new 2010-2011 demographic report is The Future of the Global Muslim Population, including current data on a global as well as regional and country-by country basis. The executive summary, interactive maps and data tables is located and printable at http://www.pewforum.org/The-Future-of-the-Global-Muslim-Population.aspx.
- See the set of visual resources Teaching Comparative Religions through Art and Architecture of the ORIAS teacher outreach program at the University of California, Berkeley which includes slide shows on the following topics: The Spread of Buddhism in India and China, Architecture and Sacred Spaces (Shinto), Polytheism in Greece and Rome, Three Monotheistic Religions: A Slide Exercise
These articles relate to teaching about religions in state standards, world survey courses, and other contexts:
- “Building a Comfort Zone: Teaching about Religion” Religion and Education, Vol. 28, No.1 (Spring 2001)(Teaching about Religion: Building a Comfort Zone)
- “The World in the Classroom” special issue of Educational Leadership (Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development)-Douglass article on Teaching about Religion, and see Ross Dunn’s article on world history education (for purchase)
This article is one of a suite in the same issue of Current Issues in Comparative Education that dealt with Islamic schools.
- “Defining Islamic Education” at the Columbia University journal Contemporary Issues in Comparative Education (CICE), Vol. 7, No. 1, December 15, 2004
This study is about the impact of learning about world religions in a high school elective course:
- Learning about World Religions in Public School: the impact on student attitudes and community acceptance in Modesto, CA (First Amendment Center, 2006 Emile Lester/Patrick S. Roberts (link to download study at Stanford University)