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Interning at 3FF as an aspiring RE teacher

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The Faith & Belief Forum

26 / 02 / 18

Greetings! I’m Amina and I have been an intern on the School’s team since September 2017. I am in the second year of my undergraduate degree studying Theology, Religious Studies and History. Shortly after joining 3FF, I founded my university’s first interfaith society, Roehampton Coexist.  After university, I plan to train to become a Religious Education teacher. As a result, my main focus when working at 3FF has been to work on the School’s team, in order to gain a more nuanced understanding of teaching RE in the UK.

My main role working at 3FF is to support the School Linking Programme, which gives students from different faith and belief backgrounds an opportunity to meet and learn from one another. The aim of the programme is for young people to learn, understand and respect each other’s differences, as well as to develop their ability to articulate a sense of their own identity. Before the schools meet, teachers taking part in the programme attend CPD training days to prepare them for planning and facilitating ‘Link’ days. Teachers will be trained on the essential elements of facilitating interfaith and intercultural days. It is also an opportunity to meet with their Linking partner and plan for when their students will meet.

I have supported with the planning and delivery of both the CPD1 and CPD2 training sessions. This has allowed me to utilise my knowledge of interfaith work, as well as pedagogy, and apply them to CPD training days held in London, Waltham Forest and Birmingham. It was an amazing experience to be at the training days. Over 50 teachers attended training in London and 40 in Birmingham. That’s a lot of teachers to cater food for! It was exciting to travel to different locations, especially to Birmingham as it was my first time visiting the city (apparently visiting the Cadbury’s chocolate factory doesn’t count!).

Supporting the delivery of the CPDs gave me an opportunity to meet a diverse range of teachers. As an aspiring RE teacher, I enjoyed meeting teachers and learning from them about the benefits and challenges of their work. I was also able to hear about how they approach interfaith issues within the classroom. Working within the School’s team also means I have been able to explore my passion for photography and videography by documenting CPDs, ‘Link’ Days and other 3FF events. I have gained experience promoting the work the School’s team does on social media and developed a reputation for being 3FF’s (un)official photographer!

Overall, 3FF has given me the skills and experiences to be a better RE teacher. Assisting on the School’s team has allowed me to develop my understanding of the complexities of faith and identity, as well as the challenges and opportunities of teaching RE to young people.
With the end of CPDs, I am now working together with my fellow interns on a 3FF fundraising event, A Celebration of Women and Belief. On 22nd March, we want to celebrate women of diverse beliefs and cultural backgrounds and use the evening to shine a spotlight on the fantastic things they do and how they approach the struggles that they may face. The event will consist of opportunities to discuss, listen and enjoy. Please save the date, more details coming soon! We would love you to come and share, and if you are interested in being part of the celebration and would like to find out more, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me on linking@faithbeliefforum.org

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