Increasingly, teachers have their choices restricted by prescriptive curriculum documents, but where choice is allowed, different content can be used. If a particular author is required, the specific work to cover in class might be up to the teacher, who then could select one that reflects a focus such as trust. If a particular subject is suggested, such as self-esteem, there is still a range of materials that approach it in a different way, such as seeing self-esteem in terms of finding significance and worth through love. If a syllabus stipulates a key figure in history, you could choose a person of faith such as James Madison.

  • Teachers can select a particular poem if only the poet is specified. For example, if William Blake is the required poet, select one of his poems that deal with an issue of faith and values relevant to learners (such as “Poison Tree,” which deals with anger and revenge).
  • Teachers can select people of faith if history syllabi include key people of a period. That might be Christian reformers in the civil rights movement, or you could choose a work with Christian imagery in art.

Examples such as these show how a change of content can free a teacher to bring a new perspective to a lesson and still cover the required material.