Way Cool Sunday School
Our Sunday School is a cooperative effort. Everyone works together to share their skills, time and energy to enrich our programs. We use the “Spirit Play” curriculum to share goals and objectives for the younger children. Our youth group, UUnited, meets twice a month on Friday evenings in Taunton with a regional youth group that includes six area UU churches. The RE (Religious Education) Team meets once a month to determine the programs, policies and events for the children, youth and adults. Parents are encouraged to join the RE Team.
Sunday School Schedule
11:00 Welcome & Worship in the Sanctuary
11:15 Way Cool Sunday School (Spirit Play)
12:00 Closing Celebrations
Children spend the first fifteen minutes in the sanctuary and then we head upstairs to the TRYWORKS classroom space. You are welcome to accompany your child to Sunday School.
Please feel free to contact the Director of Religious Education Yasmin Flefleh-Vincent at 508-994-9686 (ext. 11) or email at firstname.lastname@example.org for further information, questions, or comments about our Sunday School.
Our Youth Group
UUnited is a Regional Youth Group of seven area Unitarian Universalist congregations. The group welcomes youth in 7-12 grades (Middle and High School).
Our goal is to inspire youth to experience the awesome potential of love which lies at the center of our faith. The youth from the seven congregations create worship, engage in service projects, teach and learn from each other, play, and break bread together. They meet twice a month at First Parish Church in Taunton MA.
The Director of Youth Ministry and youth leaders collaborate to select the High School programming.
Meeting twice a month allows our youth the opportunity to meet in their own congregations at least once a month. We know that youth group is not “church” and we want our youth to experience what it means to be fully in community. We seek to inspire our youth to participate in congregational life, to attend worship with their families, to be active on committees and task forces, to help with church fundraisers and to engage with adults and younger children. UUnited provides our youth the opportunity to learn the essential steps to becoming an informed and engaged citizen of the world. Discussion, activities, and time to play are all part of the vision of UUnited. Please contact our Director of Religious Education (DRE) Yasmin if you have any questions about UUnited (email@example.com).
With this method:
- Present core stories of our faith and your particular church and its theology
- Help children to make meaning through wondering and art
- Create a spiritual community of children
- Support multiple learning styles and challenges
- Create a strong Unitarian Universalist identity
The co-developers (Dr. Nita Penfold, Beverly Leute Bruce, Rev. Ralph Roberts) see this purpose as helping children to find the religious language and story to live into their own answers to existential questions such as:
Who am I?
Where did I come from?
What is my purpose? What are my gifts?
How do I choose to live my life?
What happens when I die?
Why am I lonely and sad sometimes?
We want to help children make meaning of their lives through the container of Unitarian Universalism.
Key elements from Montessori:
- Teacher as guide into materials rather than leader
- Prepared environment (child-sized): everything in the room has an assigned place and is available to the child for worktime
- Other elements:structure and order, reality and nature, beauty, materials in sequential order, sensimotor materials (manipulatives)
- Development of community life through mixed ages
Key elements from Jerome Berryman and Sofia Cavalletti:
Door Keeper and Storyteller
Doorkeeper greets children to ready them at door, keeps art supplies organized and helps children find their materials, helps with feast time and leave-taking
Storyteller checks on readiness of story baskets, manages circle time, tells story and leads wondering, helps children choose work, manages feast time, affirms children when saying goodbye.
- Entering and getting ready for story
- Circle with song, story and wondering
- Worktime: response to story in art or choose another story
- Clean-up and feast, leave-taking
Spirit Play Strengths
Proven educational method whose values support Unitarian Universalism
- Encourages independent thinking through wondering questions
- Values learning differences and multiple styles of learning
- Gives children real choices within the structure of the morning
- Creates community of children in classroom of mixed ages
- Develops an underlying sense of the spiritual and the mystery of life
- Supports congregational polity through choice of lessons
- Develops an identity as a Unitarian Universalist