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Lindsey Peterson

June 12, 2009
World History and Geography 1500 A.D. (C.E.) to the Present
Religion in the Contemporary World
Grade 10

• Introducing the background and influence of the five main religions in the contemporary

• Length of Lesson (estimated): 85 minutes

• VA Standards of Learning

o 15a The student will demonstrate knowledge of the influence of Judaism,

Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism in the contemporary world
by a) describing their beliefs, sacred writings, traditions, and customs; b)
locating the geographic distribution of religions in the contemporary world
Duration of Activity: 2 class periods (plan reflects first class)
• Day 1: introduction of new topic/ research

• Day 2: presentations/ review of information

Learning Objectives
Students will...

• Identify the major world religions in the contemporary world

• Answer questions and make predictions about individual religions

• Examine and describe major characteristics of each religion

• Discuss as a class, the impact on culture and civilization today

• Use secondary resources (maps, globes, images) to interpret followers in certain

geographic locations

• Investigate assigned religion in groups and create powerpoint or google doc presentation

o Divide class into cooperative groups of mixed abilities  group size

determined by each class size
• Gain experience in group preparation and presentation skills

• Present findings to class


• Computer with internet access

• Text book

• Spiral notebook/ notebook paper

• Pen/ Pencil

Teaching and Learning Sequence


• When students arrive, have take out computer or paper and writing utensil

• Begin powerpoint by introducing new topic to class and explaining 5 religions to focus

• Ask who has heard of each (raise hands) and if so, where in the world do they think the
highest percentage of these followers are located.

• Distribute hand out  explain will be class work grade based on completion of

Lesson Development
• Continue with presentation on Buddhism (15-20 minutes)

• Reveal Wordle image of Buddhist ideals, allowing one minute of silent observation

• Ask the following questions on image:

o Looking at this image, what words stand out?

o What do you think are the key concepts of Buddhism?

o Why does the word ‘suffering’ appear so large when religion preaches
praise, inspiration and enlightenment?
• Explain Wordle image was created through the use of the 4 Noble Truths and the
Eightfold Path to Enlightenment  the path followed by Buddhists
o The larger in size the word, the more it appears in the writings/ teachings, holding
a significant place in the religion
o Examples: SUFFERING- According to Buddha, comes in many forms and is the
basis of the Four Noble Truths
BUDDHA- name given to Siddhartha Gautama (founder), meaning ‘awakened

• Identify key points of Buddhism

o Founder and how came about

o 4 Noble Truths

o Eightfold Path to Enlightenment

• Introduce and explain the Wheel of Life Image

o A circle, symbolizing the endless cycle of existence and suffering

• Reveal map of the world of the Buddhist population by percentage

• Examine 2005 pie chart of Major Religions in World Ranked by Adherents

• Explain to students that they will now be assigned to groups and each assigned a specific
religion in which will research information and create own 5 minute presentation either
through powerpoint, key note, or google docs; quiz grade

• Students will access information through acceptable websites and/or textbook




• Each group must include:

o founder and how particular religion came about

o where originated and location of highest percentage of followers today

o monotheistic or polytheistic

o moral code or specific religious teachings

o key beliefs

o Holy writings (ex. Bible, Koran)

o rituals

o Specific establishment for worship

o Sacred image (picture of leader, followers, establishment…many options)

o Map of geographical distribution of religion

• Responsibility of group members to designate leader, assign responsibilities/tasks for

each member
• The class will be given the remainder of class to create presentation

• Teacher will walk around room, monitoring students’ progress, answering any questions
that may arise

• In remaining fifteen minutes of class, all groups will be asked to stop what are doing and
save work
• Students will need to determine what needs to be finished for assignment and designate
how the task will be completed before next class

• Teacher will ask for questions and answer any that arise

• Remind class to bring handout back for next time to complete as follow peers


• Complete presentation for next class

• Complete worksheet section for particular religion presenting on

• Students need to bring computer to next class


• Formative

o Students will be asked to participate in class by raising hand to survey questions

o Students will participate by analyzing wordle prompt without prior knowledge to

o Teacher will circulate room, observing and helping students progress with group
o Monitor that students using internet appropriately

• Summative

o Use presentation as quiz grade, based on 3 criteria (group grade):

1.research collected on required fields 60%

2.information in presentation accurate 30% worked cohesively and all tasks completed 10%
o Use handout as class work/ participation grade (individual grade)