Intercultural and interfaith training for ASpnet teachers

©UNESCO ASPnet/U. Storost - Teachers at the International Training Course

ASPnet teachers and coordinators from Austria, France, Italy, Jordan, Romania, Turkey and the United Kingdom took part in a four-day international training course on “Learning to Live Together: An Intercultural and Interfaith Programme for Ethics Education”. Organized in cooperation with the Global Network of Religion for Children in Europe and Arigatou International, the training took place from 26 to 29 July 2011 at UNESCO Headquarters.

UNESCO, UNICEF and the Arigatou Foundation published a manual in 2008 with the aim of assisting educators in teaching children to respect and understand diverse faiths, religions and ethical beliefs. The purpose of the training was to build the capacity of educators to use this manual in their own societies to develop an intercultural and interfaith programme for ethics education for children.

The principal message was that interfaith learning should also be understood in the context of quality education (Goal 6, Education for All), and of UNESCO’s four pillars for education (learning to know, learning to do, learning to live together and learning to be). Learning to live together particularly refers to the development of attitudes and behaviours based on values. These include mutual understanding and respect for all as well as for their rights.
UNESCO’s work in the area of intercultural education is framed by its Constitution, the teachers learned. The Organization’s founders declared the “wide diffusion of culture and the education of humanity for justice and liberty and peace” as essential. They committed to the development of “the means of communication between their peoples and to employ these means for the purposes of mutual understanding and a truer and more perfect knowledge of each other’s lives” (extract: Preamble, Constitution of UNESCO, 1945).
Download the Manual (available also in French, Spanish and Arabic):

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