Explicit literacy teaching can support the improvement of student learning outcomes in Religious Education. Just as in all curriculum areas, students can be taught to express themselves correctly and appropriately and to read accurately and with understanding.
- In writing, students can be taught to use correct spelling and punctuation and follow grammatical conventions. They should also be taught to organise their writing in logical and coherent forms.
- In speaking, students can be taught to use language precisely and cogently.
- Students can be taught to listen to others, and to respond and build on their ideas and views constructively.
- One of the most important things we can so is to focus on reading comprehension, especially “ text to text, text to self and text to world” ( Keene and Zimmerman, 1997). This links quite well to the ‘Worlds of the Text’ used in Scripture study and can be used to invite students to explore another text in relationship to a text from Scripture. (https://sites.google.com/a/alaska.edu/diane-kardash/Home/making-connections)
- In reading, students can also be taught strategies to help them to locate and use information, to follow a process or argument and summarise, and to synthesise and adapt what they learn from their reading.
- Students can be taught the technical and specialist vocabulary of subjects and how to use and spell these words. They can also be taught to use the patterns of language vital to understanding and expression in different subjects. These include the construction of sentences, paragraphs and texts that are often used in a subject [for example, language to express causality, chronology, logic, exploration, hypothesis, comparison, and how to ask questions and develop arguments].
(Adapted from UK Department for Education and Skills, Key Stage 3 National Strategy | Literacy in religious education