RE Day - Festivals of Light in world faiths

14th November 2022

We had a very interesting RE Day learning about festivals of light in different world faiths which happen around this time of year.  The children have had workshops about Diwali, Bandi Chhor Divas and Hanukkah.

The children re-enacted the story of Rama and Sita which Hindus celebrate at Diwali.  They made deeva lamps and Rangoli patterns using shapes.  They also had mehndi Diwali patterns on their hands (but using coffee rather than henna).

We were pleased the children could remember the story of Bandi Chhor Divas from their work on Sikhism last year.  They could recall that a Sikh Guru, when freed from prison, took 52 Hindu princes to freedom with him during the Hindu festival of Diwali.  The children thought about light as metaphor and were challenged to think about how they could spread the light in school.  They came up with lovely ideas: friendship, caring, being kind, sharing, being inquisitive and love.

The children found out the story of Hanukkah and the Maccabees defeating the Greeks and trying to rescue their temple.  Their sacred lamp oil lasted eight days even though there was only enough for one day and this is the miracle of Hanukkah.  The children were asked to create a Hanukkah menorah with nine candles – one for the eight days of Hanukkah and a helper candle.

At the end of the day the children shared the story of 'A Reason to Shine' and thought about the importance of light in the darkness – especially in Winter time when it gets dark so early.  They also know that Christians have a festival coming soon which is lit by a star.