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Prayer at Varanasi

Julie Grove, of the RE Today Editorial Team, provides learning ideas from the Big Picture.

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What does the Calligraphic Galleon tell us about Islam?

This image is full of significant learning about Islam. Unpack it with your students and see how many connections they can make to the syllabus they study. Provide the information points one by one, but begin by...

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THE BIG PICTURE Isaiah: Light of Redemption

Jewish microcalligraphy by Ellen Miller Braun Microcalligraphy, or micrography, is a Jewish form of art which developed around the ninth-century CE. The second of the Ten Commandments (do not worship idols in place of...
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Looking at four Sikh artefacts

This term’s visual learning idea is simple. The four artefacts in the pictures show four key aspects of Sikhism. These pictures are also available on a PowerPoint from the REtoday website (the password is always...

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THE BIG PICTURE The Hajj

The huge tower of Makkah’s newest hotel seems to dwarf the minarets of the Haram Mosque. As pilgrims approach for the night prayer, what impact might this view have upon their spiritual thinking? RE teacher Aysha...
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THE BIG PICTURE can you see Jesus in other people?

Theresa Borg works in a school with a Christian character, and describes here her use of the work of art Je Cherche Ton Visage to explore a spiritual idea from Christianity – that Jesus can be seen in others.

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Carving Jesus

Show this picture to your pupils, on the whiteboard.  Discuss some questions:  What can you see? What do you think you would see if the camera zoomed out?  Who might buy this statue?  How many hours might it...
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THE BIG PICTURE St Francis and the wolf of Gubbio

Show pupils the picture (you can download it from the RE Today members’ website for your whiteboard). Tell the story, perhaps while the picture is displayed. This account is based on the 21st chapter of the Fioretti...

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THE BIG PICTURE: The realm of the hungry ghosts

Hell on earth: the realm of the hungry ghosts What is evil? Where is evil? The traditional view of a devil who tempts us and, if we really don’t shape up, a hell where we will suffer eternal punishment are familiar...
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THE BIG PICTURE: THE PRODIGAL SON

Can artwork promote enquiry-based RE learning? Claire Parkin wanted to encourage her pupils to think more widely and generate their own questions during RE lessons. She found that artwork can aid deeper thinking. This...
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How is the Jewish faith defended?

Liora is eight. She is a member of the Northwood and Pinner Liberal Synagogue. This is her dad’s prayer shawl, which she is trying out: ‘This is my Dad’s tallit. He wears it when he is praying. I can’t wait until...
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‘And that is how the universe was made! Or maybe it wasn’t In fact, God alone knows. Or maybe not.’

The modern picturing of ancient narratives in this Hindu example is powerful because it suggests that the Hindu communities continue to find meaning and points of reflection through the new forms of expression in...

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THE BIG PICTURE An interactive Muslim pilgrimage?

Amanda Goodey wanted her (mostly white) pupils to learn about Islamic pilgrimage in memorable and interactive ways. Here’s how she went about it. I work at the Hall Primary School in Glenfield near Leicester as an RE...
This illustration is from the fourth book, the Book of Kiskindha This article is for paying subscribers

THE BIG PICTURE A Diwali story in the Ramayana from the British Library

The Ramayana is an epic Indian poem telling of the divine prince Rama and his struggle to rescue his wife Sita from a demon king, Ravana. Involving almost 24,000 verses, this ancient text is divided into seven books....

Adam naming the animals by Stephen Guyon Bird This article is for paying subscribers

THE BIG PICTURE ‘Man gave names to all the animals’

Stephen Guyon Bird is an artist and former teacher. His exhibition ‘Genesis: a visual exploration’ was created in partnership with the Farmington Institute, and opened in Durham Cathedral in 2016. More than 30...

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A Hindu creation story

Activity 1: What’s the meaning?Ask pupils to begin by looking carefully at the image and trying to work out what the story told by the picture might be. Feed them some information after they have had a chance to think...
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A miracle painting by Eularia Clarke: ‘No More Wine’

Eularia Clarke (1914–1970) painted in ways compared to well-known great artists including Stanley Spencer, Giotto and Fra Angelico. Her style is direct, even primitive, and tackles a mysterious narrative like the sign...