© Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, 2010 DOI: 10.1163/157092510X527312 Journal of Empirical Theology 23 (2010) 111-132 brill.nl/jet Journal of Empirical Theology Does the Body Matter? Effects of Body-Based Learning in Religious Education Ulrich Riegel a , Michael Fricke b and Klaas Macha c a) University of Siegen, Germany Ulrich.firstname.lastname@example.org b) University of Regensburg, Germany email@example.com c) University of Siegen, Germany firstname.lastname@example.org Received 4 April 2010; accepted 17 July 2010 Abstract Given present-day conditions, pupils today have fewer religious experiences than their classmates of previous generations — and this is a challenge to religious education in public schools. In consequence, many in Germany are opting for a “performative” religious education. The aim of this didactic approach is to offer pupils an encounter with religious practice. It replaces mere knowledge about religion with experience of religion. In this context the pupil’s body becomes an elementary medium of learning. However, the performative approach has not as yet been empir- ically evaluated. Does it make a difference in religious education? The ELLRU Project researched this question by means of a quasi-experimental design: 624 4th-graders (average age: 9,16 years; denomination: 81% Protestant, 8% Catholic, 11% none) in 31 Bavarian classrooms completed two curricula, one
Journal of Empirical Theology – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2010
Keywords: learning through motoric sensation; primary education; religious education
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