When giving instruction to Muslim and non-muslim students in the UK, one area of the curriculum on Islam covers Forms of expression and ways of life. This scopes to Muslim identity expressed through the ummah including the ceremonies for welcoming a child into the ummah; expectations about modesty including dress codes; one national Muslim organisation working to relieve poverty and suffering in the UK and halal and haram; categories, how they are applied to laws of food and drink, and so forth. Here Dr Matthew Wilkinson alerts us to the need to consider history.
UK: How could the teaching of Islam be improved in schools?
The teaching of Islam can be improved in schools by the creation of a critical space in Religious Education in which Muslim pupils can be taught to articulate, justify and critique their values and beliefs and reflect on the rationale for what they believe, and in which non-Muslim pupils can reflect on the realities of a religiously ‘enchanted’ world-view which Muslim pupils often bring into the classroom.
History also has an important role to play by showing how the scientific inventions and social and philosophical precepts that emerged from Islamic civilisation (c.700 -1400) cross-fertilised humanistic and Christian learning to form the platform for the European Renaissance. Pupils need to be shown that Islam has a long history of interconnection with the cultures and ideas of a multi-faith world.
Dr. Matthew L. N. Wilkinson, Director, Curriculum for Cohesion
You can follow these ideas up in my new book published by Routledge: ‘A Fresh Look At Islam In A Multi-Faith World: a philosophy for success through education‘ (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Fresh-Look-Islam-Multi-Faith-World/dp/0415813190)
Source: The London RE Hub
Seventh graders in California experience Islamic worship”