Education about Religions and Beliefs Clearinghouse
A wide-ranging set of resources, on a website sponsored by the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations. The site features an extensive searchable database of curricula, syllabi, and other classroom resources; links to other organizations in the field; recent news articles on religion and education; and a journal of scholarly research on K-12 religious studies pedagogy.
Religion and Public Education Project
The Religion and Public Education Project at California State University, Chico, provides information for teachers about the ethical, legal, and educational issues surrounding the study of religion in public schools. Their work rests on the conviction that the academic study of religion not only makes an indispensable contribution to historical and cultural literacy, but is also an integral part of education for citizenship in a pluralistic democracy.
Religious Freedom Center, a project of the Newseum Institute
The Religious Freedom Center (formerly the First Amendment Center) is a leading voice in national debates about religion and public education. Their website’s page of resources for teachers includes articles, publications, and other resources on religion in public schools and public life more broadly, as well as accessible introductions to a range of Free Exercise and Establishment clause issues. The site also includes detailed lesson plans for teaching on the First Amendment.
The Pluralism Project, at Harvard University
For over twenty years, Harvard University’s pathbreaking Pluralism Project has been exploring the religious diversity of the United States, in order to discern the emerging meanings of our religious pluralism. Its extensive website offers many resources for teachers, including introductions to diverse faith traditions, interactive maps, syllabi, slideshows, and multimedia resources - using the voices of believers themeslves to map America’s diverse culture of faith.
Interfaith Youth Core
The Interfaith Youth Core is a leading national non-profit organization working towards an America where people of different faiths, worldviews, and traditions can bridge differences and find common values to build a shared life together. IFYC works primarily with students and faculty on college and university campuses, but many of their downloadable online resources can be adapted for use in K-12 schools as well.
Islamic Networks Group
Islamic Networks Group (ING) is a California based non-profit organization that counters prejudice and discrimination against American Muslims by teaching about their traditions and contributions in the context of America’s history and cultural diversity. Among other programs, ING offers both an Islamic Speakers Bureau and an Interfaith Speakers Bureau, which connect schools and public institutions with religiously diverse speakers available to supplement existing curricula and cultural diversity programs.
Institute on Religion and Civic Values
The mission of the IRCV (formerly the Council on Islamic Education) is to strengthen civil society by exploring the intersection of faith, citizenship, and pluralism, and to help align public policymaking with our nation’s core values of religious liberty and tolerance. Their website provides a wide range of lesson plans, publications, and other resources for educators, primarily—though not exclusively—designed to support effective, unbiased teaching about Islam and contemporary Muslim communities.
Sikh Coalition, Resources for Educators
The Sikh Coalition is a community-based organization working toward the realization of civil and human rights for all people. In particular, they work to build an American society where Sikhs may practice their faith freely while fostering strong relations with their diverse local communities. Their website includes a range of resources for elementary, middle, and high school teacher who wish to enrich the discussion of Sikhism in their religious diversity curricula.
Harvard Divinity School, Religion and Public Life, Resources for Educators
The Religion and Public Life program at Harvard Divinity School partners with citizens, artists, and professionals in all fields to advance the public understanding of religion in the service of cultivating a just world at peace. They offer extensive resources for K-12 educators, including videos and other materials for classroom teaching, and an online graduate certificate program in “Religious Studies and Education."
Teaching About Religion in Support of Civic Pluralism
This website is supported by the non-profit organization Objectivity, Accuracy, and Balance in Teaching about Religion. It provides background information and instructional materials to support teaching about both religious and nonreligious worldviews in public schools. Its resources for teachers include very brief summaries of diverse worldviews, as well as curricula and pedagogic guidelines designed to ensure that America’s public schools are welcoming places for students of all worldviews, religious or nonreligious
An innovative program for middle and high-school students, developed by the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change. Generation Global (formely Face to Faith) connects students worldwide (in 19 countries and growing) via a secure website where they interact. The program features facilitated video conferences where students discuss global issues from a variety of religious and secular perspectives. Through Generation Global, students gain the dialogue skills needed to prevent conflict by breaking down religious and cultural stereotypes.
Center for the Study of Religion and American Culture
The Center for the Study of Religion and American Culture sponsors research and public education programs to explore the relationships between religion and other aspects of American culture. Most of the Center’s activities are oriented toward college and university faculty, but the website also includes a selection of lessons plans and other instructional materials developed by NEH summer scholars in the 2010 summer institute “The Many and the One: Religion, Pluralism, and American History.”
Religion and Ethics Newsweekly, Resources for Educators
Religion and Ethics Newsweekly’s lesson plans use stories, online video, and other resources to address a broad range of current events from bioethics and the role of faith in politics, to Islam and terrorism. Lesson plans for all grade levels are broken down into background information for teachers; lesson procedures, including activities and resources; “organizers” for students which provide handouts and other study aids; and supplemental material to help students conduct research and to stimulate classroom discussion.
National Humanities Center, Divining America Collection
This is a collection of essays by leading scholars on various topics in American religious history. The topics cover a wide variety of disciplines and religions communities. The essays are brief, but sufficiently nuanced to provide the reader with a solid, and scholarly, introduction. Topics are divided into three general sections: 17th and 18th century American religious history, 19th century religious history, and 20th century religious history.
Association of Religion Data Archives
The Association of Religion Data Archives strives to democratize access to reliable data on contemporary religious life. The ARDA Learning Center provides educators high-quality religion resources and learning modules at various academic levels, ranging from junior high school to college and seminary. The site also provides a forum where teachers can share syllabi and resources with one another.
American Religious Sounds Project
What does religion in the United States sound like? The ARSP offers resources for interpreting American religious life by attending to its varied sonic cultures, including a unique sonic archive, documenting the diversity of everyday religious life through field recordings, interviews, oral histories, and related materials. The website includes valuable pedagogical resources that can be integrated directly into the classroom, inviting students to consider: How does our understanding of religion change when we begin by listening for it?
Center for the Study of Material and Visual Cultures of Religion
The website of Yale University’s Center for the Study of Material and Visual Cultures of Religion (MAVCOR) includes academic reflections, photo essays, and other resources exploring the material stuff of religious life, including sacred arts and architecture, religious dress, devotional objects, and much more. MAVCOR’s work is primarily oriented toward unversity audiences, but also includes rich primarily source materials for K-12 teaching on religion.
Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding
The Tanenbaum Center is committed to the vision that people of all beliefs, from the most religiously devout to the most ardent atheist, can live, learn, and work peacefully together in a spirit of true respect. Their site features a number of resources for educators, including the book Religions in my Neighborhood (a resource for K-4 teachers), curricula on the conflict around the Park51 Muslim community center and other topics, etiquette guides, lesson plans, and reading lists.
Facing History and Ourselves
For more than 30 years, Facing History and Ourselves has believed that education is the key to combating bigotry and nurturing democracy. Facing History works with educators to improve their effectiveness in the classroom, as well as their students’ academic performance and civic learning. Their website features resource collections, lesson plans, and other instructional materials on antisemitism and the Holocaust, the African-American Civil Right movement, and other social justice issues.
Teaching Tolerance, a program of the Southern Poverty Law Center
Teaching Tolerance is working to foster school environments that are inclusive and nurturing – classrooms where equality and justice are not just taught, but lived. The program points to the future, helping teachers prepare a new generation to live in a diverse world. The website is not focused on religious diversity, per se, but it features a wealth of classroom activities and teaching kits on a wide variety of subjects relevant to pluralistic education, including some on religious pluralism and tolerance.
9/11 National Day of Service & Remembrance
The website of the 9/11 National Day of Service & Remembrance includes a collection of lesson plans and resources for K-12 teachers, to help educators introduce students to the events of 9/11, and to the spirit of empathy, unity, and service that arose throughout the United States and beyond in response to the attacks.