An easy activity to introduce the idea of people from different religions wearing different things and how it aids their religion.
You will need
- Something to wear during a game such as a wristband, neckerchief or headscarf.
Before you start
You may wish to research some items mentioned in this activity idea if you are not familiar with them or don’t know their purpose. You could reach out to people in the community who use them who might be willing to visit and explain.
The following link to BBC Teach videos which might be useful to help you understand the different items if you are not fully familiar. Some items can be found in different religions such as veils or headscarves although their purpose and usage may be different.
- Hijab – a headscarf sometimes worn by Muslim women
- Alb – a ceremonial robe worn in Christianity
- Rakhi – a string bracelet worn by Hindus celebrating Raksha Bandan. The video also covers traditional Hindu robes.
- Kara – a bracelet often worn by Sikhs – and a Turban – a practical head covering often worn by Sikhs are both covered in this video.
Run the activity
1. Introduce the different things that people might wear to help them practice their religion. Examples include a headscarf, veil, prayer shawl, Kippah, turban, robe etc. Explain why people wear them and why it is significant for practicing their beliefs. They frequently act as symbols of somebodies beliefs and is personal choice rather than something they must wear.
2. Ask them if they have anything they wear to help them with their beliefs.
3. Give them something to wear whist they play a familiar game or do the next activity, e.g., a wristband, neckerchief or scarf. At the end of the activity ask the group to split into two groups depending on who thought about what they were wearing whist doing the activity and who did not.
4. Ask them about their scout uniform and what it means to them. Does it make them feel a part of something? Does it remind them of the people they have met through scouting?
What people wear rarely affects what they do day to day. People may look different but wear what they do for a good reason and may have similar interests to you on the inside. Maybe they support the same teams, have visited the same places or are even part of the Scouts like you! There may be things that you wear that people from elsewhere in the world would find peculiar or strange.
This activity has allowed young people to explore and understand their own beliefs and the beliefs of others who belong to different major religions around the world.
Do your young people know anyone who wears anything like what you’ve discussed? Do they understand them better now?
Consider how an item, perhaps designed for adults or ceremonial purposes, may restrict movement or vision when playing a game. Choose your game or activity taking this into account.
Change the level of challenge
For younger sections, you could use some of the discussions to spark questions about people in our community and what makes us different.
For older sections, task young people with researching the story of an object and how it is used. They could then report this back in different creative ways.
Make it accessible
Those with sensory differences may find unusual items distracting and hard to deal with such as bangles or items around their head. Consider using items they already own and use but in different places to usual such as a necker around their waist instead of the neck.
Youth Shaped guidance
Involve the young people and ask for their stories and experiences to shape the activity and the conversation. If using this to work towards a Faith or World Faith badge, ask the young people which faiths they are curious to discover more about.
This activity has been created by Alison Osborn, Scout Network member with Pegasus Scout Network and Skills Instructor with Stanley’s Own Scout and Guide Band as part of her King’s Scout Award.
Outcome: Value and trust others for who they are, regardless of their background.
Time: 30-45 mins
Location: Indoors/Outdoors/At home
Suitable for: Cubs, Scouts
Take it further
Gilwell Park’s Heritage team have a Faith Walk that covers some key sites around the home of Scouting including different places of worship.