Death, funerals and the Christian response - RE session for year 6 pupils delivered by volunteers through REinspired.
This afternoon I was part of the cross denominational team that delivers RE sessions to pupils at local schools. The sessions are organised and written by REinspired, a charity project from "churches together in Earley and East Reading". I am one of the team of volunteers that deliver sessions to 4 local primary schools.
I am part of the team about 20 times a year but my LLM training and specialism in bereavement is especially used in two sessions:
- difficult questions
- Death, funerals and the Christian response
Tomorrow is "difficult questions" for year 5 pupils - we, as a panel, answer any questions raised by the pupils on creation, God, Heaven and living a Christian life. There's also a fun mastermind q&a segment which I am kind of dreading, pass might be used a lot!
Today was the year 6 Death, funerals and the Christian response session. The RE syllabus requires children to understand death and grief before they complete ks2, this session helps the schools with this requirement. The session is held in a local church and the kids walk down for the afternoon - 90minutes. The session starts with an introduction and then the children ate divided into 3 groups which will visit 3 bases in turn.
Base 1 is on grief; focussing on the emotions we experience when someone we love dies, looking at the grief process and discussing how Christians view heaven, and how they turn to God and the church community for support when they are bereaved.
Base 2 is on memorials; it invites the children to think about how we remember the departed with the help of photos of different memorials used by varying religions and cultures. The children then think about how they might like to be remembered and how their actions in life might result in being remembered positively.
Base 3 is a reading of the Children's story "waterbugs and dragonflies" which helps children understand what happens after death, focussing on heaven. The children have time for questions and then make their own dragonfly picture to take away.
The session ends with a round up of the session and the children all head off back to school.
For more information about how REinspired works and could work in your area, I recommend:
"The Story of Reinspired: Developing creative partnerships between churches and schools" by David Skinner, Paul Haynes and Jane Earl is published by BRF on 18 February 2011.