Especially for Small Church Schools


We've selected content from the Christian Education pages that is of special interest to those involved in Small Church Schools.

A Lamp to My Feet: An Introduction to the Bible

A Lamp to My Feet

With this zine, students develop the attitudes and confidence needed to light their path with the lamp of Scripture. They can then access God’s message to the world by asking how each reading relates to them: “What does this text say about Christ, and how does it apply to my life?”

The zine explores general motivations for and goals of Bible study. It then suggests study habits and methods, and explains various formats and translations of the Bible. The zine introduces the Old and New Testaments, the kinds of books they contain, and how the books came to be there.

Church School Directors and Pastors: Complete Your Online Christian Education Survey

Dear Pastors and Church School Directors,

Ten years ago we surveyed our Church Schools to learn their needs, and the numbers of students and teachers we serve. Once again we are asking for a few minutes of your time so that we may determine the usefulness of the programs we offer, your needs, and the numbers we serve. We need only one survey per parish, preferably completed by the Church School Director, but in his or her absence, by the parish priest.

Click here to take the survey now!

The survey results will be made known through our website, and also in our newsletters in The Word. I would like to call your attention to our newest endeavor, namely, a listserv, so that we can offer news updates via email. Thank you, as always, for your efforts in the Orthodox Christian Education of our children.

Your servant in Christ,
Carole A. Buleza, Director, Department of Christian Education

Curriculum from Orthodox Christian Education Commission

The Antiochian Department of Christian Education partners with the Orthodox Christian Education Commission to prepare curriculum materials for all ages. Preview the materials below, and then order from the Antiochian Archdiocese Bookstore (the best price for many items) or  from OCEC's online catalog

Knowing Your Faith: Educational Standards for OCEC Curriculum

"Knowing Your Faith" is presented as a series of PDF files, from Kindergarten through Grade 5. Each grade includes content for parents, teachers, and students.

Christmas Project at St. Nicholas Cathedral

This is a wonderful Christmas project we've been doing at St. Nicholas for many years.  It's our way of reaching out to those less fortunate in our local community, and it truly gives us meaning in this busy season.  Please pass the word around to others who might want to organize this for next year in their parishes.  If you live close by and would like to join us, we can use lots of manpower.  Just let Ed and Georgette know so they can be prepared. Samia.

Here is Ed’s letter:

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:

 

Our St. Nicholas Kids’ Club Christmas program schedule for this year is as follows:

 

 Thursday, December 10, 2009, 6:30 – 8:30 PM, Sort Clothes (Dinner Served)

Friday, December 11, 2009, 6:30 – 8:30 PM, Wrap Gifts and Decorate (Dinner Served)

Saturday, December 12, 2009, 7:00 AM – 12:00 Noon, Christmas Program

(Breakfast served to all in attendance)

 

We are asking for each of you reading this email to help make this a memorable day for the children and families that will be in attendance from our surrounding neighborhood.  We will be distributing over 600 toys as well as clothes that have been donated by our parishioners and serving breakfast to all in attendance that day.  We need help on each of the three days listed in the schedule above.  This is an opportunity for you and your children to help serve the needs of our community.  If you can’t be in attendance then we ask that you support us by making a financial contribution.

 

Learning Opportunities for Middle and High School

We've put together a comprehensive guide of many curriculum options for those who work with teens.

www.phyllisonest.com

Phyllis Meshel Onest, M.Div., the Director of Religious Education for the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Pittsburgh, has compiled an exhaustive resource list for both church school and home use at www.phyllisonest.com.

  • Sources of books, icons, tapes, magazines
  • Home Schooling Resources
  • Websites at Your Fingertips
  • Church School Director Resources
  • Church School Teacher's Notebook
  • Great Lessons Need These….!
  • Jr. & Sr. High Resources
  • Parents & Families Resources
  • Pre-School Resources
  • Small Church School Resources 

For To Us A Child Is Born

Unwrap the story of Christ’s birth to reveal the fullness of the Incarnation behind the “Christmas story” of pageants. This full-color zine from the Greek Department of Religious Education begins with the Annunciation and then follows the seasonal calendar through the Nativity, Theophany and the Presentation of the Lord. The text unpacks the meaning of the Incarnation through icons, scripture readings and hymns for each feast.

Special features on each page illuminate traditions (such as the Vasilopita and home blessings) and lives of saints involved in the celebration.

Suitable for ages 12 and up—for use in the classroom, during retreats or at home.

Heaven on Earth: Divine Liturgy

Heaven and earth meet in the Church through the Divine Liturgy. The newest full-color zine from the Greek Department of Religious Education begins with a brief history of worship in the Orthodox Church and then details each section of the Divine Liturgy.

Teaching Pics

There are 80 cards, 8 1/2" x 11" in size. Each card features a full-color photograph on the front. The text and suggested activities printed on the reverse sides of the cards provide simple explanations of each picture and are meant as guidelines to encourage further study. The cards break up into four clearly defined sets: Sacraments, Feast Days & Services, Great Lent & Pascha, and Divine Liturgy. Packaged in its own colorful storage box, the Teaching Pictures will be useful for all grades of the curriculum. Order from the Antiochian Bookstore.

Answering Christ's Call to Love Your Neighbor (Project Mexico)

If you are looking for a fun, hands-on way to teach young people about the importance of doing acts of charity, Project Mexico has developed a three-lesson Church School Curriculum that is available at no cost. The three lessons give students an opportunity to examine what it means to be poor, hear what Christ instructed us to do for those in need, learn about Project Mexico's ministry to the poor and orphaned of Mexico.

Please click here to order Project Mexico curriculum materials.

Mini Units

FREE DOWNLOAD! Modules of 1-2 lessons for 3-4 different age groups. Some of the lessons are based on the Orthodox Church in America’s Youth theme of the year, such as Champions of the Faith. Other topics are suitable for seasonable emphases such as stewardship, charity, and missions, and may work for retreat settings.  

FOCUS Units

FREE DOWNLOAD! FOCUS is a series of modules of 5-6 lessons for 5 different age groups. Topics covered are the Journey to Pascha, the growth of Orthodox Christianity in North America, the Theotokos, and the Nativity season.


 

Potamitis Publishing

Potamitis Publishing publishes Orthodox children's books, in both English and Greek. Filled with lush and vibrant images, praised by His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew the 1st, these books offer engaging stories that make Orthodox teachings accessible for little ones and adults alike.

 

 

Orthodox Church in America's Department of Christian Education

Visit the Orthodox Church in America's Department of Christian Education website at www.dce.oca.org.

Resources include:

  • Complete (FOCUS) Units. There are five units: Monasticism, Journey to Pascha, The Nativity Season, My Orthodox Family, and The Theotokos. The units consist of of 5-8 lessons written at five levels, preschool-adult.
  • Mini Units. There are 15 multi-leveled units of 1-2 lessons, including Mission, Repentance, and Champions of Faith.
  • Teacher Resources. In this category there are 182 articles, handouts, music, bible stories, tools, and activities.

The Mustard Seed

The Mustard Seed is a feature of the Department of Christian Education. The task of the website is to provide suggestions and advice for small church schools; however, Church School Directors of small, medium, and large schools can benefit. The site is maintained by Catherine Sullivan, an associate of the Department of Christian Education. "If you have the faith of a mustard seed...you can move mountains!" Matthew 17:20

Small Church Schools

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Resources and Ideas

Download our Resources and Ideas for Small Church Schools packet.