Teaching Creation: A Modular Approach



Abstract.  The present article describes a modular approach to teaching Genesis 1–3 that values depth over breadth even in an introductory class. The module allows students to learn about the text and its original context by orienting discussion around contemporary issues of practical concern. Specifically, the creation-evolution debates provide an opportunity for students to learn about contemporary political, social, and legal implications of interpreting Genesis 1–3. The conflict of traditional and modern values emerges also in issues surrounding gender and autonomy in Genesis 2–3. This pedagogical approach challenges various student worldviews to promote discussion and greater intellectual sophistication. The correlation of the text with ongoing contemporary issues engages student interest and motivates learning. It also allows the class to explore both the ancient text and its interpretation in diverse communities. Finally, the module allows considerable flexibility for student and teacher interest and the needs of a given class.

Several additional resources related to this article appear online at: http://www.wabashcenter.wabash.edu/journal/article.aspx?id=11063. These include (1) a schedule of possible readings, assignments, and lesson plans, (2) selections from ancient commentary on Genesis 2–3 from scattered sources, and (3) a bibliographic essay noting the usefulness of selected resources related to the module.