Most lessons of the sort will not be an easy find, or even an easy creation. They come from knowing your students, and knowing what will rile them up! Still, here are a few tips to get you started:
In the end, just find a theme. Something you know travels through time, and is still significant today. While a few years old now, Jimmy Carter's "Losing my Religion" piece is perfect for stirring up conversation (and review). Read along in the piece (at the link), and then ask yourself where these questions could take your classroom...
- What does religion mean in your life? (Yes, you can ask this! No, it does not mean you are introducing or judging any religion or breaking any law.)
- How do you think religion affects society?
- How does religion impact the political system or laws?
- What historical support can you come up with for President Carter's points on the oppression of women by religion?
- Are some religions more or less accepting of difference than others?
- How does the discrimination discussed by Carter compare to other, more current discrimination?
- What groups or peoples are the brunt of discrimination in modern society?
- How has history taught us to be tolerant? Forgiving? Accepting?
- What do you think is the overall goal of The Elders?
- Do you think people can practice their faith and still be accepting of difference? How?
- Why? Why? Why? This is the big one... As your students why we should look deeper at this issue and those similar.
- And finally, What can you do? You see what Carter has done through this piece. Other world leaders joined him in statements regarding their own faiths or beliefs. What can you, as individuals in our modern world, do to make a difference now and in the future?