Breaking new ground - Grade 11 learners design the Day of kindness

What could be more suitable for a "Day of Kindness” than encounter with strangers and unknown persons? Engaging in unfamiliar perceptions? Developing an understanding for other beliefs? Providing an opportunity for questions that allow for conversations at eye level?
For several weeks, in an interdisciplinary ethics and religion project, DIA branch learners (German International Abitur) followed this idea, dealing with the diversity of religions and beliefs as well as problems and difficulties in daily interaction with it.

This resulted in completely different, intensively developed project ideas, of which below only a few are listed.
  • basic information on fundamental terms like belief, religion, religiousness and confession, as well as on the diversity of religious ideas,
  • planning of a quiet room at the DHPS,
  • documentaries on Judaism in Namibia and the diversity of faith based on interviews,
  • a film about finding answers to the question what happens after death,
  • a podium discussion with different religious leaders on the question "Is there a God?”,
  • a podcast on the Hallelujah festival in Windhoek,
  • a lecture with film excerpts of the American series “The Simpsons” on the way religion is portrayed in it,
  • a cinema event of the movie “Monsieur Claude and his daughters” where the mesage of living ecumenism is conveyed.
The idea, that teachers and classes invite grade 11 learners to their lessons on the “Day of Kindness” on 13 November, to speak about the chosen topics, was widely accepted. Altogether, the idea has proven to be extremely successful and enriching. A friendly encounter, where people listen to each other, trying to understand their counterpart, even though he/she might have a different opinion, is the basis for a healthy relationship. Thus, this day can be understood as an important step towards a real school of encounter.

(Dunja Gerdes, DHPS religion teacher)

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