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Great Religions of China
Submitted by Melissa Pineiro, North Brunswick Township High School

Core Questions addressed:

  1. When?
  2. Where did they start and where did they diffuse?
  3. Why?
  4. Who?

Time Frame: 1 - 2 days

Suggest Grade Level: Middle/High School

New Jersey Core Content Standards: 6.2, 6.3, 6.4

Instructional Objective:

  1. Students will be able to describe the beliefs and practices of Buddhism.
  2. Students will be able to describe the beliefs and practices of Confucianism.
  3. Students will be able to describe the beliefs and practices of Taoism.
  4. Student will be able to use primary resources to find similarities in the beliefs and Practices of Buddhism, Confucianism and Taoism.

Resource Materials:

  1. Buddhism Power Point Presentation
  2. Confucianism Power Point Presentation
  3. Taoism Power Point Presentation
  4. Handout of Buddhism Quotes
  5. Handout of Confucius Quotes
  6. Handout of Taoist Quotes
  7. Student Handout

Strategies and Procedures:

  1. Have students list as many religions as they can that are practiced in the United States.
  2. Discuss how it is possible for more than one religion to be practiced in a country.
  3. Discuss that there are three religions that have been traditionally practiced within the country of China. These religions are Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism.
  4. Discuss the Power Point Presentations for each religion, or discuss orally the beliefs and practices of each of the three religions.
  5. Have students fill in the Student Handout as they are reviewing the material.
  6. Pass out the handouts of Buddhist Quotes, Confucian Quotes and Taoist Quotes. Read through select quotes and have students try to decipher their meaning. Do at least one or two from each religion as an example.
  7. Tell students that their assignment is to find quotes from each of the three religions that are similar. They are to find two sets of quotes (one from each religion) that are similar in someway. They are then to write an essay or short paper that deciphers the meaning of each of the quotes, describing how the quotes are similar and explains how the ideas delivered in these quotes fit into the beliefs of Buddhism, Confucianism and Taoism. Students should use the information taken on the Student Handout to aide them.


  8. Students should then go through the handout of quotes and decide which quote from each of the religions has the most meaning. They should write an essay or a short paper explaining what they feel the quote means and why that quote has meaning to him or her.


  1. Evaluate Student Handout.
  2. Evaluate student essays or papers .
  3. Evaluate class discussion of religions.

To learn more about the influence of Religion and Spirituality on our global society, click on the links below:
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