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Online learning at home - RE and opting out

(15 Posts)
OptOutRE Mon 18-Jan-21 12:07:24

Just want to know whether anyone else has done/is thinking of doing this. My DD is 13 and in S2 (equivalent of Yr 8 I think?) and we're doing OK with the online learning although it mainly consists of been given work to go away and do and then minimal comments back on the work that they send in - no Zoom lessons or anything especially interactive. We use Show My Homework/Satchel One and my phone is constantly pinging with notifications of homework being set or notifications that homework has/hasn't been submitted.

Today I had 4 notifications from the RE teacher, setting homework for submission by the end of the school day. It isn't particularly onerous but it is voluminous and I'd much rather my DD spend some time reading a book, or doing some history research, or doing her art homework than having to spend time doing homework for RE.

I'm in Scotland (and will be posting on Scotsnet) but I just wanted to have a wider input on the general principle. My DD is engaged but finding it hard doing all this work without the exchange of chat/ideas/debate with fellow pupils and without the input of teaching from a teacher face-to-face. If I could lessen her load I would because it's hard for her and we're finding it difficult .

We're a non-faith family but I've never minded her doing her 1 hour of RE every week because, in a classroom environment, I can see the value of debate and exchange of ideas. But this doesn't happen in the confines of her bedroom over a computer screen and it just seems pointless.

I'd just send an email to the Head and say can we opt out. I'm not going to get in a barney about it or anything.

Be interested to hear what others think.

OP’s posts: |
Grobagsforever Mon 18-Jan-21 12:11:09

I wrote a my year 6 daughters teacher a note saying we wouldn't be doing RE at home as we're atheists

Xerochrysum Mon 18-Jan-21 12:19:03

I don't understand why RE is unimportant just because you are a non faith family or atheists. We are non faith family too, and I think it's valuable for my dc to learn about deferent beliefs to be a rounded person.

MinnieMountain Mon 18-Jan-21 12:32:48

I agree that it’s important to know about religions. They’re often an inherent part of a country’s culture too.

We’re atheists but still raising our 7yo to understand religions and why they are important to people.

Can you work out what the general theme of this RE work is and discuss it over supper?

TravellingSpoon Mon 18-Jan-21 12:34:48

Surely its about tolerance and learning about others and their beliefs.

Its like saying you don't want to learn French because we don't live in France.

TeenPlusTwenties Mon 18-Jan-21 12:36:01

RE isn't about indoctrination, it is about understanding the viewpoints of other faiths. This is something which is pretty important in today's world.

HugeAckmansWife Mon 18-Jan-21 12:36:19

I'm an atheist and I teach RS. There are a fair proportion of the world who are strongly motivated by religion to act in certain ways, both good and bad and follow certain rules. I think a "cultural literacy" of religion is fairly important so you can appreciate WHY people might make certain choices or abide by rules you feel are unnecessary. Its no less relevant to an atheist than it is for someone who doesn't live in Antarctic to learn about that.

CoffeeWithCheese Mon 18-Jan-21 12:39:33

It's on the pile of work that will get ignored if time's short I'll admit - but that's because it's a complete doss of "make a poster about something religious" work and I'm not bloody tying us all up in knots dealing with that.

saffire Mon 18-Jan-21 12:40:03

Usually I would say of course learning about others religion is important - but at the current time with all the stress that is happening around home learning that's one subject I'm not bothering to get my dd to do.
Currently dd 10, has 5 and a half hours work expected per day. Today's RE task is an hour and a half long. It's ridiculous! Personally, I think RE is one thing that is better studied in a group.

Gliblet Mon 18-Jan-21 12:43:31

You can combine RE with history (impact of events on faith or the effect of religion on events), what's she studying in history at the moment?

You can pick elements of it up in other subjects too. Is she studying a language or doing geography? Religion is a fairly major part of culture in a lot of countries.

TeaMilkNonePlease Mon 18-Jan-21 12:43:34

I sympathise ref the amount of work and have reassured daughter that she wouldn't complete every task in class so I'm not expecting her to push on till she is done at home. But I do want her to try everything, it's no different than being in school in that regard.

The advantage of lessons being videos rather than live is that she can pause and rewind as many times as she needs to, and do the classes in the order she wants, which might help with motivation.

At this point we are just trying to cover as much of the ground as we can. Good luck whichever route you decide to take.

OptOutRE Mon 18-Jan-21 13:07:20

My DD is 13 - during her long school career EVERY YEAR they've celebrated and learnt about:


She's visited Mosques, Churches, Hindu Temples, drawn pictures of fables, religious stories etc... She knows lots about other religions.

I agree that an RE lesson should be a place where tolerance and respect is discussed. My DD says she loves it when they have proper discussions about religious issues such as what is Christianity's, Islam's, Hindu's etc. views on the LGBT community, death penalty, abortion etc. But her RE lessons sound a bit dull to be honest and she's come home a few times saying stuff that obviously proves her teacher is quite a devout Christian - nothing wrong with that of course but it doesn't make for a very well-rounded 'neutral' teaching of 'moral philosophy'.

Only some of her lessons are based around videos - some are just a few questions and maybe a link to a website or suggestions of where she could find some research. I wish there were more recognisable 'lessons' being put together for my DD. But the quality of our overall online educational provision is a whole other story isn't it?!

Anyway, thanks for all your feedback.

OP’s posts: |
peak2021 Mon 18-Jan-21 13:10:19

I don't think you should but you have the option to and I support that you can do this if you wish.

I think the issue is the amount of work required and the timescale myself, which is perhaps a little unreasonable even if some children cannot manage to do things other than last minute. There are many other subjects.

ArchbishopOfBanterbury Mon 18-Jan-21 13:11:49

4 notifications for homework submissions today is excessive. I'd happily ask that she does one or two, but not all 4.

I wouldn't opt out completely, it IS a useful subject. But 4 homeworks due today is too much.

rookiemere Mon 18-Jan-21 13:50:57

S2 is really tricky because there are so many subjects- DS14 is a lot more focused now he's only doing the subjects he picked.

I'd definitely push back and say that your DD is focusing on her core subjects and see what response you get.

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