Teachers to face the sack if refuse to teach same sex…hmmm

Ok… be prepared peeps this is going to be an essay…

After looking over the article again and looking at some recent cases that have been in the news I would just like to say that all I see this article being is right wing tory propaganda. The topic is highly controversial but it is not calling anyone a bigot!!!

The article has been written for The Telegraph newspaper, a conservative leaning newspaper, therefore already one sided and again right wing. The legal opinion of one Aidan O’Neill QC is again murky as the London chambers of which he is a barrister campaigns against same sex marriage. Already it is quite evident that this article is leaning very much to the right wing tory agenda. It seems the intent of the article is to provoke outrage among Christian teachers outraged they have to teach something they may not agree with.

However… Liz Truss one of the education ministers clearly states that there is still no way to know the impact of the legislation will be… she also explains that parents currently have the right to withdraw children from sex education and I am pretty sure that if a parent did not want their child to learn about same sex marriage there would be policies in place by the school that would respect the rights of these parent based on their own cultures and beliefs as well as those that may have a prejudice. I am training to be a teacher and I do not believe in God, I don’t believe in any religion, I think religion has been used far too often to oppress women, dictate what law is and what is not and has been the cause of many unnecessary wars, and (look at what’s happening now in Gaza). However despite that being my personal opinion I have to leave that at the school gates, walk into school and teach effectively to be inclusive of ALL children no matter what their beliefs, culture or home life. I have to teach religious education without bias opinion and I do this because children need to learn of other religions, beliefs and cultures and they need to be taught acceptance of all. How do I teach religion to children??? I use religious texts, religious iconography, and the nativity at Christmas, songs, storybooks and religious films such as DVDs telling the story of Diwali etc. etc. etc.

How do I teach a child to be accepting of same sex couples and same sex families, I use texts designed to show equality and that coming from a gay household is not wrong so children can learn to be accepting of all just as I expect children to learn about accepting all religions.

I know the consensus is you feel you are being targeted because your faith is coming under attack and you feel you cannot teach something you deem to be immoral, but can you honestly say when you teach about other religions you do not feel that they contradict your beliefs??? I have always been brought up to be accepting of all people and if you don’t have anything good to say to not say a word. I understand that for someone of faith this article will strike fear in to you (TORY AGENDA) but look at the news this week, a man won his tribunal against his unfair demotion at wok due to him posting on ‘Facebook’ he did not agree with gay marriage. His workplace demoted him and reduced his pay but the high court agreed that it was unfair of his bosses to do such a demeaning thing for having an opinion and he won!!! Even gay rights campaigners agreed with the judge’s decision because anyone can see that what happened to him was wrong despite being against gay marriage because his right to an opinion resulted in him being treated unfairly!

We are living in a progressive society, things are changing and in my opinion for the better, I don’t believe anyone should have a claim on marriage as I feel that love is love and when two adults love each other they should have the right to marry. Look at the UN bill of human rights that is what everyone should be striving for so the world can be a happier, harmonious and equal place.

Finally as teachers we must act in an “un-discriminatory manner”! Ultimately it is not US our choices impact on but the children we teach and we have a moral duty to ensure that we teach children about love, acceptance and understanding and we are inclusive of all children!!!

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It’s all about the Early Years – How Children Should be Educated!

Hi,my name is Mr B, I am currently training to become a Primary school teacher and I am specialising in Early Years.

I have to say, I love it and I love teaching but something that perplexes me is the way that Early Years appears to be the ‘forgotten’ key stage. Luckily I have worked in and visited some excellent Early Year’s settings and undertaken school experience in brilliant schools with excellent facilities for the Early Years. However, there still seems to be a negative attitiude thats often appears as ‘hierarchal’ bullying in schools. This might seem a little confusing seeing as a school should pull together to help children achieve more but it does happen. Often the reception classes and the nursery classes are ‘banished’ to a corner of the school, fenced off and down long corridors with very little interaction between staff in the early years and other key stages. This ‘seclusion’ often leads to negative comments such as “Early Years, isn’t all you do is play?”

Well actually…. it is NOT!!! Early years education is so much more than ‘play’ and it is frustrating that the way early years is taught is not implemented throughout the education system.

Learning through play encourages children to respond more positively to new ideas and concepts and allows children to make links with areas of study.

An example of this is when I was on my recent school experience. On one table there was a book about light and circuits and alongside these books was two crocodile clips and leads, a battery and a lightbulb. The children had not been told anything about this table, just that it was set up for them to ‘investigate’. Two children were observed playing with the equipment at the table, I say play, they were ‘investigating’. I spoke to them and asked them how could they make the bulb light up? The children looked puzzled and looked through the books. Then child A had an idea, the child connected the bulb, battery and crocodile clip leads in one line. The bulb did not light up. Rather than walkaway child A and child B continued to work together. Looking at a picture in the book child B had a brainwave… “we need to make it round”. Working together they connected the bulb and the battery with the clips and formed a circuit. The result…The bulb lit up! “Mr B we done it!!!” They were so happy with what they had achieved they quickly showed their friends (scaffold learning) who all in turn had a go at making the circuit. Another child who was joining in then went over the role play corner which was set up as a ‘bear’s house’ due to the topic of bears and picked up a lantern. This child placed the circuit in the lantern and made the connection that the lantern needed a light! This led to the child making the connection with the lantern in the story of the week, ‘Can’t you sleep little bear’. In allowing the children to interact and play, investigating the circuit and making connections with their story of the week, the children discovered a new concept and created meaning for what they had learned!!!

In allowing children to investigate circuits allowed them to create a foundation of knowledge that will be useful to them in the later stages of their educational development. When children are told what to do they become ‘robotic’ but in the early years foundation stage they become learners, scientists, artists, visionaries and take ownership of what they learn. This way of teaching is so important, it allows for children to remain as children while still learning. Children are not linear learners, this is proven, but we force them all too often in to linear learning by seperating subjects and setting objectives specific to one area. With the early years foundation stage children are set realistic and achieveable goals set against a collection of learning areas. Life is not secular, it intertwines and this is what the foundation stage teaches, lets not stop this from continuing throughout children’s education.

Well, thats my first blog, it probably makes no sense to many but those interested in education will hopefully understand that early years is important and its not just ‘play’.
Mr B