Learning Outside the Classroom – Students’ Responses and Learning Outcomes

Ahmad Amirali is a Religious Education teacher in Pakistan and conducted his research in Karachi in 2016. The aim of his study was to gather students’ perceptions about learning outside the classroom in gardens and examine whether students saw these visits as contributing to their learning. The study also enquired the outcome of visits on students’ learning experiences and investigated challenges faced by the students and teachers while participating in these experiences. Two visits were conducted during this qualitative action research; one inside and one outside the school premises.
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Teacher Research Projects: what’s available out there?

Students working on a computer[1090]

At this point of the year, lots of teachers will be breathing a massive sigh of relief having finished their classroom research projects;  others will be chewing their nails thinking about the one they’re about to start.

So it’s timely to think about where all this work gets published.

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Search Engines as a Tool to Assist in the Teaching and Learning Process

Alykhan Dhanani was teaching secondary school students in the Ismaili Religious Centre in Dar-es-salaam, Tanzania when he conducted his action research project in 2015. His study  explored whether search engines as a tool can assist the teaching and learning process or not.  His study explored how search engines are defined and seen by Tanzanian teachers and students, and uncovered links between the use of search engines and other educational theories such as constructivism, differentiation, scaffolding and active learning.

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The Power of Music: An Exploration into the use of Background Music in the Religious Education Classroom to Enhance Classroom Environment

Karina Hussein was working in a complementary school dedicated to the Religious Education of Shia Imami Ismaili Muslim youth in Toronto, Canada when she conducted her study in 2014. This research explores the use of background music in a religious education classroom and focuses on the impact on engagement and behaviour made by the introduction of background music in the classroom. The music selection used in this study included instrumental music, popular music and several other genres including R&B, Hip Hop, Rock, Spanish, Arabic, and Bollywood music.

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An investigation into student needs in complementary Ismaili Muslim schooling in Toronto

Shezeleen Kanji was working in a complementary school in the Shia Imami Ismaili Religious Education (RE) system in Toronto, Canada when this study was conducted in 2010. In this system, denominational RE classes are run by professional teachers in Ismaili places of worship outside of mainstream school hours.  A new programme for the Religious Education of Ismaili Muslim secondary age pupils was in its inaugural phases at this time. Prior to the introduction of this new programme, no data had been collected around student emotional and social needs. Based on her observations in the RE spaces in the west sector of Toronto she noticed some students appeared to lack self-esteem, felt isolated among their peers, were victims of bullying, felt stressed about coming to the RE space, or had physical or learning disabilities that could not be addressed. At the time, there was no parent council or a platform for students to be able to voice their needs. In addition, the governance model of this system was also still evolving; there was felt to be a need for an institutional model with a focus on addressing the needs of the community’s young people. This study examined the organization and governance structures for the complementary school programme to see if they could be altered to best care for student needs specifically in the areas of academic, social, emotional, safety and security needs.

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Recreating a Third Space in the RE Classroom: Using Dialogue to Understand Faith

Arzina Zaver was working in complementary education when she conducted her study focused on recreating a third space in a religious education classroom in Vancouver, Canada. Her understanding of third space largely draws on the ideas of the literary theorist Homi Bhabha but has been re-defined within the context of this study to refer to a space of dialogue for Shia Ismaili Muslim adolescents

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