Goulburn West Public School student Miriam Lasker loves answering questions in ethics classes and reaching a conclusion.
"I sometimes take things from my experience. Instances in real life and situations that have been discussed come to my mind which help me decide what is right or wrong," Miriam said.
Student Gabriele Tremble has been studying ethics as a subject for the past two years.
"It helps me think about sharing, what's fair and what's not," she said.
Miriam's mother, Dusty, feels that it is important to have an alternative to religious education in schools.
"There are no religious education classes that teach comparative religion and some religious classes feel that there is only one right way, whereas ethics teaches children about different ways things can come together. It makes them think about issues that makes one a good person and contribute positively to the world around them."
She added that it was good to see things from a different perspective.
"I think some of the topics in ethics are making kids think a bit more deeply about things. They question other people's ideas as well as their own ideas and know that it's okay to disagree with things and still get along and make it work together," she said.
Dimity Taylor, an ethics teacher, feels that it is very different from learning religious scriptures.
"It is completely secular. People choose ethics classes because of several reasons like when they have no religious affiliations," she said.
Teaching ethics for the third year, she has seen the positive impact it has on children.
"They are more eloquent in expressing their opinion, thinking more intently about the ideas and have started listening to each other more. I think it's a really great skill to be able to listen more to your peers," she said.
As part of training, teachers are taught to not give their own opinion.
"When the kids are not being taught what might be the ethical responsibility in a particular situation, it helps them come up with their own ideas and listen to each other."
The children solve an ethical dilemma they are facing by expressing their opinion and listening to the views of others, which help them to deepen their understanding of the idea.
"Evidence shows that kids who participate in ethics philosophy class develop better reasoning skills and empathy," she said.
Primary Ethics provides the opportunity for NSW public primary school students who don't attend scripture classes to participate in philosophical ethics classes.
If you wish to be a teacher or volunteer, visit the website https://primaryethics.com.au.
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