Children and Youth Religious Exploration (RE)
Religious Exploration (RE) Winter 2013 Schedule
The Unitarian Fellowship of Lawrence aspires to be a welcoming, intergenerational community that respects individual differences and beliefs. Together, we share the joys and milestones of life as we foster intellectual inquiry and spiritual understanding. In the larger community, we promote social action and environmental responsibility. We recognize that parents are the principal spiritual guides for their children, and we are here to act as resources in this journey.
Whether visiting for the first time or a returning visitor, we welcome children of all newcomers to participate in any of our programs.
- To help facilitate a positive experience, we ask that you please check in at the Welcome Table so we can answer any questions and provide you with a nametag.
- Parents are welcome to stay with their children in the nursery or class until both are comfortable.
- Please be sure to make nursery attendants and teachers aware of any allergies or special needs.
- On nice days, children often spend time on our playground, so most wear fairly casual clothes that parents don’t mind getting a little dirty. After class or between services, please plan to supervise your children on the playground.
9:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.: Nursery attendants are available for infants, toddlers, and young children (to age 4) in the Beatrix Potter Room.
Sunday Classes (Pre-K through 6th grade)
Children start the morning for classes from 9:30-10:30 a.m. in the RE wing. Parents are welcome to settle children in their classrooms before attending the Program in the sanctuary.
Sunday morning Religious Exploration (RE) classes are held for two age groups:
- Children from 4-years-old (i.e. Pre-Kindergarten) through children in the 1st grade meet in the Ralph Waldo Emerson Room.
- Children from 2nd grade through the 5th grade meet in the Louisa May Alcott Room.
- Children in 6th grade may:
- attend the older RE class.
- help with the younger RE group if they are interested in receiving some training.
- remain with their parents for the entire Spiritual Celebration.
If parents would like any information to assist in deciding what fits best for their child, they are welcome to contact the current Children’s RE Team Leader (see contacts below). Children at either end of the age-range in each group are welcome to move up or down if parents feel it would better suit their child’s needs.
After class, parents are asked to pick children up to attend coffee/snack time and then start the 11:00 Spiritual Celebration together in the sanctuary. After story time, children from age 4 to 9 years are welcome to leave for activities with caring adults or return to sit with their parents. Older children remain with their families for the entire service. As a multigenerational community, the Spiritual Celebration is planned with children in mind as we all celebrate and learn together.
Parents are always welcome to join their child(ren) for any of their class sessions.
Our class sessions are based on emphasizing our Unitarian Universalist principles and learning to live them. We use curricula from the Unitarian Universalist Association's Tapestry of Faith and other programs. We teach respect for oneself and for others, appreciation of the teachings of world religious traditions, concern for social justice, and respect for our planet. Activities are designed to reinforce the theme of the session, and attempt to address multiple learning styles and the children’s needs for active learning as well as quieter moments.
Families are invited to participate in Wednesday evening programming. A meal is served at 6:00 for a small contribution. Childcare is available from 6:30 to 8:30. Class offerings vary throughout the year and family-oriented classes are offered periodically. See the “Our Programming” and “Adult” tabs on this site for more information.
Youth (7th – 8th grades)
Currently, OWL classes are being held for pre-registered 7th and 8th grade youth on Wednesday nights from 6:30-8:00 p.m. See more details below. Watch this space for future programming for this age group.
Youth (9th – 12th grades)
Our senior high youth meet each week on Wednesday evening from 6:30-8:00 p.m. in the Mary Wollstencraft room at the end of the RE Wing.
RE Volunteer Teachers
Volunteers are the soul of our program. The Religious Exploration Team relies on them to staff our programs. The contributions of our volunteers' time and talents guarantee quality programming for children and youth and the continuation of our Unitarian Universalist legacy. Adults can help mentor the children of our community and find that they learn a great deal about Unitarian Universalism and relationships through their interactions with our youngsters and their peers. Those with a concern for the future of liberal religion should contact the team leader of the pertinent age-range (see below) to discover how they can participate in this meaningful and rewarding effort.
Our Whole Lives (OWL)
Our Whole Lives is a UU sexuality curriculum that is age appropriate and designed for 6 different age levels. We offer sessions periodically. Learn more at http://www.uua.org/religiouseducation/curricula/ourwhole/
Our proposed schedule for offering OWL classes for children and youth is as follows:
Fall and Spring 2012/2013
Middle School Grades 7-8 (OWL classes are currently ongoing for the 2012-2013 Session)
Fall and Spring 2013/2014
Fall 2013 Grades K-1
Spring 2014 Grades 4-5
Fall and Spring 2014/2015
Middle School Grades 7-8
All of the Our Whole Lives facilitators at Unitarian Fellowship of Lawrence have had at least one year's experience teaching in our Religious Education Program, have attended an intensive training for OWL facilitators, and have passed a background check. They are all dedicated to the safety of our young people and their spiritual growth.
Periodically, we have the opportunity to serve at LINK (Lawrence Interdenominational Nutrition
Kitchen), Just Food (collecting for local food pantries), and Lawrence Coalition for Peace and Justice Saturday Peace Vigils at the Douglas County Courthouse. These events are advertised in our weekly newsletter, and listed online at: http://www.uufl.net/newsletters.htm
Safe Congregation Policy
The Unitarian Fellowship of Lawrence is committed to promoting a safe and welcoming environment. Please see our recently Board approved Safe Congregation Policy for specific details about the procedures in place to ensure that all children and adults are safe from sexual and physical abuse. All adults who volunteer with UFL children and youth are asked to sign this Code of Ethics and Disclosure Form.
Children’s RE Team Leader: Michelle Iwig-Harmon, email@example.com
Youth Team Leaders: Lilly and Drew Smith, firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Whole Lives Team Leader: Carol Eades Delnevo, email@example.com
UFL Main Office: firstname.lastname@example.org