Audience analysis: Demographically, my audience is diverse and may hold a variety of religious beliefs, leaving my speech to be potentially received in both a receptive way and otherwise. Psychologically, my audience may well be interested in religion or otherwise and therefore, their beliefs may have quite a profound effect upon their engagement with the topic. It may be of great interest or it might completely turn them off.
Rhetorical purpose: To inform my audience about teaching with regards to religion.
Redemptive purpose: To inform my audience how this vocation or vocational skill can serve as a platform for promoting something that God values, according to Scripture.
- Attention Getter
It is clear that teaching provides its staff with a prime opportunity to pass on the word of God to young people. Even if this is not done so explicitly, as in quoting scripture, it can be done in a fashion where the teacher exemplifies Christian teaching through their actions and speech.
- Establish Credibility
Whilst I may only be young and relatively inexperienced, I have encountered a significant number of teachers and educational contexts which have provided me with the capability to recognise the opportunity which teaching provides those who wish to forward the teachings of God.
- Purpose Statement
It is my intention to speak to you today about how teaching, as a prospective career path, could allow those who are so inclined to pass on the word of God. The teacher is given singular access to teaching children the curriculum as well as the importance of living a morally-sound and Christian lifestyle.
- Preview Statement
This will be validated through my discussion of religion as being a cross-curricular topic; the fact that teachers must demonstrate themselves as strong, moral role models for young people; and finally, through the idea that religion and prayer promote positivity and confidence in young people which can actually aid their progress.
- Cross-curricular learning is a current push within education and it is where subjects are covered across a broad spectrum of curriculum areas and it is designed to enhance a more well-rounded education for the child (Webb, 1996, p93).
- Religion fits neatly into this with regards to its moral and ethical teachings – the basis of a strong, Christian life. Religion is something which can be integrated throughout the curriculum and indeed, Maggie Webster has written an entire book on the topic, listing ways in which religion can be included within subjects such as art (Webster, 2010, p26), Dance (Webster, 2010, p43), Drama (Webster, 2010, p59) and Music (Webster, 2010, p59).
- It is clear from this finding that Christianity can play a significant role within this process as God’s teachings promote a moral lifestyle. If teachers are already demonstrating this to their charges, it is surely only a small step further to promote this in religious terms? This is discussed by Dennis Doyle (1997) who states that “some also advocate that religion ought to provide a support structure for moral development” (Hauer, 2007, p55).
- It is said that faith “comes by hearing the word of Christ” (Piper, 2010, p85) and therefore, by passing on God’s teachings, teachers are enabling their students to have faith and, in turn, happiness and inner strength.
- Through the inclusion of religion in teaching, teachers are able to improve the progress of their students as it enables them to feel more confident and to have a greater degree of strength in their convictions.
- This is the undeniable effect of having faith because by having faith in God and his teachings, you are opening yourself up to his nurture and are allowing yourself to have faith in your own abilities too.
It is clear from my discussion that teaching provides a strong standpoint for the promotion of God’s teachings. This can be done through the everyday presence of the teacher in the classroom: their inclination to promote a happy, moral and Christian lifestyle can be included in their everyday actions and behaviour, as well as through the cross-curricular learning which can be implemented. Equally, by doing this, it can aid the progress of students by increasing their faith and therefore their confidence, in turn.
- Re-focus the audience
Therefore, I would like to leave you with the thought that, should you wish to pursue a career in teaching, that you aim to include some religious aspects within your work and to promote the word of God as it is clear by doing so, you will be improving your students’ progress and general well-being as a whole.
Hauer, J. (2007). Educating for Character and Teachers’ Moral Vitality. Journal of Research in Character Education, 5(2), 33-55.
Piper, J. (2010). Let the Nations Be Glad: the supremacy of God in missions. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic.
Webb, R. (1996). Cross-Curriculum Primary Practice: taking a leadership role. London: Falmer Press.
Webster, M. (2010). Creative Approaches to Teaching Primary RE. Essex: Pearson Education Ltd.