Religious Education: What is the place of morals, values and attitudes in the teaching of Religious Education?

CHAPTER FOUR

METHODS OF TEACHING MORALS IN RELIGIOUS EDUCATION

4a i).Explain the place of morals, values and attitudes in the teaching of Religious Education.

Definitions of morals, values and attitudes

Morals refer to peoples relationship with others as pertains to their judgments about what is right and wrong. It can further be defined as that which pertains and is concerned with right conduct or principles or rules of right conduct.

Values are defined by Lang et al (1995) as personal assessments of worth, attributed to all concepts, experiences, relationships and material things which influence ones evaluations of or our attitudes towards the desirability of behaviour or events“. They are further understood as principles, standards or qualities that are fully and freely chosen as worthwhile or desirable to strive and live for.

Lang et al (1995) further defines attitudes as personal predispositions (feelings and urges), generally based on values that evolve from experience and influence individuals to behave in certain ways towards themselves and other persons and things“.

Values tend to form slowly, but once accepted and internalized they become part of the behaviour of the individual guiding his/her own conduct and relationship with others. Desirable values and attitudes are important not only for the individual growth in the affective but also for integration in the society. The two are related because a major shift in attitude for instance will require a change in all one’s values and behaviour.

The effective teaching of values will require an understanding of the moral development of the children.

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