Children's Academy: World Religions in Dialogue

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What is a Children's Academy of World Religions?

The Children's Academy is an educational and vacation program for children aged 8-12. It also serves as a practice-oriented module for prospective teachers and students interested in pedagogical work. For these, there is an accompanying and preparatory seminar at the University of Kassel. All (teacher training) students who are interested in the topic and work with children in this age group can participate.

The Children's Academy celebrated its debut in January 2019. Due to the great response from the children, parents and the university, we planned another Children's Academy in August 2019 and January 2020. In the future, the Children's Academy will take place every year during the winter vacations or winter semester .

The aim of the children's academy is to facilitate interreligious and intercultural encounters, thereby strengthening the children's social skills such as empathy, understanding and appreciation, as well as imparting religious knowledge. 

The focus of my teaching and research is in the area of interfaith learning. Through my teaching degree and my time teaching in schools, I have been able to experience school life first hand. When I observed my students in this way, I saw MUCH diversity. I don't just mean that they - each and every one of them - are unique. By diversity, I also mean the different cultures, religions, family constellations, circles of friends, and many other things that shape the children.

In my opinion, our task as teachers should be to prepare ourselves as well as possible for this in order to be able to do justice to the children in this diversity and to strengthen them in their ego. This is where I see the great importance of interreligious learning.

The Children's Academy is taking the right step, at the right time, in the right direction.

It is my heart's project and through the commitment of the students and contributors it has the chance to change and grow anew.

I am looking forward to further eventful and beautiful Children's Academies - World Religions in Dialogue.

Many greetings

Katharina Gaida


Every year, students from the University of Kassel design workshops for the Children's Academy and at the same time attend an accompanying seminar for it as part of their studies. The students are a multi-religious and multi-cultural learning group. This is ensured, among other things, by the possibility of "additive key competencies".

Tim Krüger, Saskia Romeis and Judith Sturm accompanied and actively supported the Children's Academy as part of Katharina Gaida's PhD project in the summer semester 2019. Many thanks!

Hello, my name is Rokaya. For me, the Children's Academy combines two things that are close to my heart: encouraging children with fun and games and interfaith dialogue. I am responsible for the organization, which means that I accompany the groups throughout the week and support Katharina. Together with Saskia, Anna and Agatina we did the shopping, made sure that everyone was supplied with snacks and drinks throughout the day and set up an afternoon program for the children. For the afternoon program, for example, we had games on one side that included more action and more relaxed things like meditation trips, painting and handicrafts on the other side, so that we could respond to the needs of the children. In addition, we always have an open ear and a free shoulder for the children and are their personal contact persons. We are on site all week to be there for the children when they need us. Whether it was a religious question, a game they would like to play, or a fight with a friend they want to talk to us about. Katharina has affectionately called us the "Without Worries Team" and I think that describes our work quite well.

My name is Atena, I am a state-certified communications specialist, study business law at the University of Kassel and have started my own business in the creative field on the side. I am incredibly happy to be a part of this wonderful project and to support her in the areas of design, photography and marketing. Katharina's right hand - that actually sums it up perfectly.

I am looking forward to more creative children's academies - world religions in dialogue.

Many greetings

Atena Turkmany

Creating heterogeneity

One of our greatest concerns is to reach ALL children - regardless of social, financial background and educational status, ALL children.

To be able to guarantee this, we work closely with two cooperation partners.

The intercultural organization BENGI e.V. provides financial support if needed and thus enables children from financially weaker families to participate.

The program "Familie in der Hochschule" of the University of Kassel ensures that children of students can participate in our vacation and educational program free of charge.


Student education

Another central concern is the optimal education and professionalization of students. Through the cooperation with the "Service Learning" program of the University of Kassel, we receive the support for the best possible theory-practice transfer, for the promotion of various key competencies, for cultural and social exchange, and for the expansion of competencies in everyday professional life. The students experience the immediate benefit through "helping output" and can connect university content with the real life world of children.

Children's Academy in January 2019


The Children's Academy will not be able to take place in January 2021 due to the current Corona Pandemic. We are keeping an eye on current events and look forward to seeing you and all of you soon. Stay well! Have questions or want to receive our newsletter? Please feel free to contact us: kdw[at]uni-kassel[dot]de

Children's academy in August 2019

Would you like to learn more about interfaith work at the University of Kassel?