Thursday, April 21, 2011

Buddhists and Schools Conference in Birmingham

Munisha reports from the first ever conference for UK Buddhists working with schools, organised Clear Vision.  She says “Saturday 26th March saw nearly 30 Buddhists of various UK traditions gathering at Triratna’s Birmingham Buddhist Centre - whose magnificent shrine is shown opposite. They were all active, or interested  in, working with schools as part of mandatory Religious Education, visiting schools or welcoming group visits to their temples and centres.

“We started with three 10-minute talks on “What I want to communicate as a Buddhist”, by speakers from the Theravada, Triratna and Soka Gakkai traditions. These were followed by a keynote talk on “What Religious Education asks of us”. The speaker, Dr Joyce Miller, is a Theravadin laywoman, as well as deputy chair of the Religious Education Council of Great Britain. Workshops and presentations covered meditation with primary-age children, a prayer-flag-making workshop on the Six Perfections, 18 years of Clear Vision video for schools and Engaging with Teenagers.

“I thought the event was a great success and evidently others did to as their evaluations forms gave scores of 4/5 out of 5 on every count. Suggestions for future events were an emphasis on more practical workshops, and some small groups. I think this was a great start, and now we have the makings of a network, someone can more easily find a range of speakers and workshops for next time".

The event was organised by myself from Clear Vision, in association with Birmingham Buddhist Centre and the Network of Buddhist Organisations UK.

Notes from the Teaching Meditation to Children Workshop  is available on the Triratna News resources page, as is Munisha’s presentation to the conference.

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