Last Updated: Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Sense over sectarianism - Primary school workshop lesson pack

What is this?

This resource consists of lessons to explore issues around sectarianism in a safe and challenging environment. Four key questions are addressed:

  • What is sectarianism?
  • How does sectarianism manifest itself in our community?
  • How does sectarianism impact on individual and society?
  • What actions can I take to deal with sectarianism?

This resource has a long and established track record of successful engagement with upper primary school learners. While it can be effectively delivered by itself it ideally supports the classroom topic of the novel study The Divided City.

Who is this for?

​Primary practitioners and P6/7 learners (second level).


PDF file: Sense over sectarianism - Primary school workshop lesson pack (2.9 MB)

Explore this resource

It is recommended that staff read Tackling sectarianism: An overview of resources and use the Timeline: An anti-sectarian professional learning resource as preparation for delivering this anti-sectarian resource.

How to use this learning and assessment resource to improve practice

This resource offers an opportunity for critical thinking through exploration and responses to the key questions. It follows a structured pathway as follows:

  • Session 1 focuses on deepening learners understanding of sectarianism, prejudice and bigotry, and includes a brief historical context.
  • Session 2 looks at ways that sectarianism is borne out through language and examines who/what influences behaviour and attitudes around sectarianism.
  • Session 3 looks to find solutions – exploring community/society and who has the responsibility to challenge sectarianism.

The resource has been specifically designed for use with primary 6 and 7 and should ideally be delivered over three consecutive weeks to reinforce the learning. The lessons could also be delivered within a wider term of work on the issues.

The workshops are particularly suited to work with twinning schools i.e. denominational and non-denominational classes working together.

Improvement questions

  • How does this work link with the range of protected characteristics that are defined by the Equality Act (2010)?
  • To what extent do our learners understand the concept of sectarianism?
  • Do we offer our learners the opportunity to explore their own life experiences in relation to sectarianism?
  • How far as a school community do we challenge bigotry, prejudice and discrimination towards members, or presumed members, of a religious denomination?