College of Liberal Arts & Sciences
BA (Bachelor of Arts)
Session and Year of Graduation
Honors Major Advisor
This capstone explores the interfaith dialogue surrounding teaching world religions in an elementary classroom setting. The Interfaith Initiative does this through a six-week program that engages kindergarteners through sixth graders on the five major world religions: Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism. With interactive activities such as games, skits, and crafts, the students can examine and discuss abstract concepts like fasting, karma, and tolerance. This capstone measures the success of this program through the interactive curriculum, drawings of abstract concepts done by students, journals by the principal investigator, and transcripts of audio interviews between the principal investigator and students regarding aspects of the program. As well, this program also produces a final product of an op-ed detailing the experiences of the principal investigator and furthering the conversation on interfaith dialogue on a larger scale. The goal of the Interfaith Initiative is not only to prove the benefits of teaching world religions at a younger age rather than waiting for higher education, but additionally to engage students in interfaith dialogue in a classroom setting. This program was able to add valuable information to the field of interfaith studies by displaying that these conversations benefit students in exploring diversity, new traditions, and the world around them.
Interfaith, Education, Religious Studies, Interfaith Dialogue
Copyright © 2017 Jessica Graff