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(Gateways for Better Education) Did you know that state departments of education WANT students to learn about Jesus? As Easter approaches, the holiday is a natural time to instruct students in the story that is so pivotal to understanding world history.
Here are examples of current state academic standards that relate to the Easter story:
MASSACHUSETTS - Students are to "describe the origins of Christianity and its central features. A. Monotheism; B. the belief in Jesus as the Messiah and God`s son who redeemed humans from sin; C. the concept of salvation; D. belief in the Old and New Testament; E. the lives and teachings of Jesus and Saint Paul." (7.14)
CALIFORNIA - Students are to "note the origins of Christianity in the Jewish Messianic prophecies, the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as described in the New Testament, and the contribution of St. Paul the Apostle to the definition and spread of Christian beliefs (e.g., belief in the Trinity, resurrection, salvation)." (6.7.6).
TEXAS - Students are to "explain the significance of religious holidays and observances such as Christmas, Easter..." 113.18 (19)b.)
WISCONSIN - Students are to "explain the origins, central ideas, and global influence of religions such as...Christianity." (B.12.14)
OHIO - "Students should be familiar with and able to identify the geographic origins, founding leaders and teachings of...Christianity." (6.8)
FLORIDA - Students are to "identify key figures and the basic beliefs of early Christianity and how these beliefs impacted the Roman Empire...Examples are Christian monotheism, Jesus as the son of God, Peter, Paul." (SS.6.W.3.18)
Gateways to Better Education has developed a textbook-style lesson plan for public school teachers to download and use in their classrooms.