Understanding Humanism launches new teaching resources for Welsh schools

26 January, 2023

Understanding Humanism has launched a new package of free resources to support teachers in Wales. The subject of Religion, Values, and Ethics within the new Curriculum for Wales requires that young people learn about religions and non-religious philosophical convictions such as humanism. However, until now, education resources specifically focussed on humanism in Wales have been hard to find. That has now changed.

The new resources include materials on Welsh humanists and the history of humanism in Wales, as well as what it means to have a humanist approach to life (with versions available in both English and Welsh). Highlighted humanists from Wales who have had a significant impact on the country include Aneurin ‘Nye’ Bevan, the Minister of Health who introduced the National Health Service; Millicent Mackenzie, Wales’ first female professor and the first woman in Wales to stand for election to Parliament; and Rhodri Morgan, the former First Minister for Wales.

Teachers in Wales are also able to request a visit from a trained humanist school speaker to answer their students’ questions, and sign up for free online training to support their subject knowledge and practice. A guide to effective teaching about humanism and non-religious philosophical convictions within the new curriculum is also available.

The 2021 Census revealed that there are now more non-religious people than there are Christians in Wales, and other surveys show that up to half of the non-religious in the UK share a humanist approach to life. The resources have therefore been designed to support young people to develop a better understanding of the beliefs and values of the people of Wales, as well as play an important part in a broad and balanced education that enables them to develop their own personal worldview.

Wales Humanists Coordinator Kathy Riddick commented:

‘The new Curriculum for Wales is one of the most inclusive in the world when it comes to teaching about Religion, Values, and Ethics. However, we know that teachers need support with the requirement to include non-religious philosophical convictions. Humanism is the most prevalent of non-religious worldviews in Wales and is also the most straightforward to include in RVE. We hope these resources will support teachers and enable more young people to learn about the diversity of belief in Wales today.’


For further comment or information, media should contact Wales Humanists Coordinator Kathy Riddick at kathy@humanists.uk or phone 07881 625 378.

Wales Humanists is part of Humanists UK. Humanists UK is the national charity working on behalf of non-religious people. Powered by 100,000 members and supporters, we advance free thinking and promote humanism to create a tolerant society where rational thinking and kindness prevail. We provide ceremonies, pastoral care, education, and support services benefitting over a million people every year and our campaigns advance humanist thinking on ethical issues, human rights, and equal treatment for all.

Understanding Humanism is Humanists UK’s education service. It aims to introduce young people to humanism as a non-religious approach to life which can be studied as an example of a ‘non-religious philosophical conviction’.  It provides teachers with the resources necessary to teach accurate, high-quality lessons about humanism, and assists them with the development of their own subject knowledge. The Understanding Humanism website offers information and activities, as well as free school speakers who can work with teachers to broaden students’ understanding. Visit Understanding Humanism at understandinghumanism.org.uk.

Further information about the history of humanism in Wales can be found on the Humanist Heritage website.