The text that follows consists of a scheme of work for the topic of Rules and Laws.
The main aim of this scheme of work is to enhance the children’s understanding of the need for rules and laws. The subject area is best taught in a manner that children can relate everyday experiences so that they can then proceed to work on rules and laws in religion.
* RULES IN GAMES
Activity – Using snakes and ladders because most children, if not all, will have had experience of it.
Discuss “What are the rules of the game?” (children may have variation)
If there are no variations, continue discussion about how the game could be played differently. If children did not know the rules, would they be able to play the game?
If children have variations (such as throwing a six to start the game), discuss the importance of playing using the same rules.
Children then use the understanding of the importance of rules when playing a game to devise their own game using a variety of grids. This activity could also continue in a Design and Technology lesson. Placing the children in small mixed-ability groups works well.
The results of the children’s own games will enable the assessment of children’s understanding and considerations of the players.
* SCHOOL RULES AND CLASS RULES
These can be discussed and children can respond to the rules. (Effectiveness of the rules and their importance). What rules would the children like to introduce and why?
* LAWS IN SOCIETY
Discussion of laws in society (shops, fireworks code, owning animals, police, road signs etc.)
What happens if laws are broken? Is this fair?
What would society be like if there were no rules?
Children (in groups 2/3) are then given a map (available for download below) and need to consider the following;
It is a map of a town called UPTOWN. The town is on the planet ZOG. There are no rules or laws. Two people die every minute in this town as there are no traffic laws, people also drive on the pavements and at very fast speeds. The graveyard and the hospitals are getting full. There is lots of crime. Laws are needed urgently.
On the map, they need to include the following;
- A PRISON (in an appropriate location)
- POLICE STATION (in an appropriate location)
- SPEED RESTRICTIONS (using examples from the highway code)
- TRAFFIC LIGHTS
- ZEBRA CROSSINGS
- BRIDGES OVER THE MOTORWAY
On a separate piece of paper, they need to include the following;
- SOCIETY LAWS AND JUSTIFICATION FOR THE PENALTY (for example, if they are going to send someone to jail for stealing they need to say what length the sentence might be and perhaps why the sentence is longer/shorter than others).
- SHORT PIECE OF WRITING TO JUSTIFY THEIR MAP – The children’s responses to this task can provide excellent assessment opportunities.
The children can then move on to rules and laws in religion having gained a better understanding of the need for rules and laws.