October Note From Dri

Since March of 2020, we’ve gotten used to “things are a little different,” or “we’re finding a creative way to do this,” or even “thanks for bearing with us in these unprecedented times.” And Sunday School is no different. We’re outside, in tents, setting up and tearing down each week, much like the Israelites wandering in the wilderness. And sometimes we feel like this pandemic is the wilderness. One can only hope that we don’t have to be wandering for 40 years!

But the silver lining is that we have found a creative solution and Sunday mornings the parking lot is abuzz with life! It’s so good to be learning together again in a new way. AND the children and youth are able to follow a modified version of the long term scope and sequence that the Christian Education Committee has been crafting this past year. Here’s a quick overview of this year’s intentions.

Our youngest age groups are focusing on introducing the Bible as God’s one big story. Inside, the nursery children, which should really be called “toddlers thru 3’s”, are learning the Bible stories chronologically through the Rhyming Bible, Jesus Storybook Bible and Stop and Go Devotional. Similarly the Preschoolers are walking through the Jesus Storybook Bible to see how the story of Jesus is woven throughout the Bible. 

The elementary and younger youth are visiting and revisiting the New City Catechism. The Kindergarten through 2nd graders are taking a first pass through the most central questions, those that tell the gospel story. The 3rd and 4th graders are reviewing those questions and digging a little deeper with follow-up questions that expound upon the central gospel message. The younger youth, 5th and 6th grade, are reviewing all of these at a much quicker pace to ensure they’ve really got a good handle on them before moving on. The goal is for these questions to stick with them for a lifetime. New City Catechism booklets are available for any families who don’t already have one!

The 7th-12th grade students are working through the Foundations Class that makes sure they have a good solid base for understanding the Bible, the Church, and the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC) before they leave student ministry. The curriculum is adapted from the EPC’s recommended Confirmation Class. For the next couple of years, this Foundations class will move down a class until it rests with the 5th and 6th grade as an entry to youth group and a touch base for families joining the church, but we don’t want any of our students to miss out on these important building blocks of their faith, so we started at the oldest and are working backwards.

If you’d like more information about the Jesus Storybook Bible, New City Catechism or the Foundations Class, contact Dri Bayer.  Over the next few months we’ll be sharing more about the vision for children and youth, and where we’re headed in the coming years!