Do humanists have rules to follow?
Suitable for:

Lesson Plans

Do humanists have rules to follow?

In this lesson students will evaluate whether some rules are more important than others and use moral dilemmas to explore whether rules always help. They will learn how humanists believe rules can often be helpful, but that we should also always think about the consequences of our behaviour when deciding how to act. They will go on to learn how many humanists follow the Golden Rule (treat others as you would like to be treated yourself), explore why humanists think this rule is so common because it evolved naturally alongside our capacity to reason and empathise, and investigate, though writing a letter, how humanists might respond to criticisms of the Golden Rule. Download

Presentations

Do humanists have rules to follow?

Download

Activities

Rules

Can students say where these rules have come from and order them according to how important they are? Download

Lying dilemma

Is lying always wrong? A dilemma to get students to explore whether we should take rules or consequences into account when we act. Download

The Golden Rule

A student handout on the Golden Rule, including examples from around the world and a map on which to locate them. Download

Golden Rule letter

Can students write a reply to a letter from a child who has used the golden rule inappropriately and see how using the Golden Rule means taking other people's tastes and preferences into account? Download

Humanist responses: rules

Can students fill in the speech bubbles with humanist responses to statements and questions about rules? Download

Ten non-commandments

Two examples of humanist guidance for living a good life to use as stimuli to inspire students to write their own. Download

Films

What makes something right or wrong?

(Age 11+) A short animation about how humanists make decisions about how to act, and why they believe we should be proud that morality is a human invention. Watch

Human nature

(Age 7+) A short film in which author Philip Pullman explains why he believes morality and our conscience evolved naturally. Watch

Humanist Perspectives

Ethics

Why should we be good to others? How can I know the difference between right and wrong? Download

Ethics: The Golden Rule

What is the Golden Rule and where do humanists think it came from? Download

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. More information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

Close

Contact Us

Humanists UK
39 Moreland Street
London EC1V 8BB
education@humanism.org.uk
@HumanismEdu

Understanding Humanism

© Humanists UK 2017. Registered Charity No. 28598
humanism.org.uk | Privacy

Illustrations by Hyebin Lee