Sunday Schools / Children’s Church
Most Anglican parishes in the Diocese of Brisbane offer special children’s activities during part or all of the regular services, so contact your selected parish for more information.
Our AYCF staff often meet with Sunday School teachers to discuss which curriculum may best suit the needs of the children, parents, teachers and parish.
Not every example of Christian educational materials available on the market will necessarily suit every parish’s flavour or budget, so please consult with us and/or investigate widely before deciding. The following list is not intended to be definitive – we would love to hear of other resources which have worked well in your parish.
(Don’t forget that some lines of Sunday School resources may be borrowed at no charge after joining the Roscoe Library at St Francis College, Milton: (07) 3514 7419 / http://ministryeducation.org.au/roscoe-library-resource-centre.)
Some examples of Curriculum Materials which are known to have worked well in our Diocese (in no order):
are weekly Episcopalian Lectionary-based lesson plans that follow the Revised Common Lectionary for young children, older children, and adults.
Intergenerational lesson plans are available at the beginning of each season and for many major feast days throughout the liturgical year. Most lesson plans are based on the Gospel, and some also have an Old Testament Lesson Plan.
These lesson plans can be used as written, or they are easy to adapt to reflect the context of your congregation.”
From the site: “This lectionary-based blog offers specific helps for specific Sundays. It is not about children’s sermons, although I hear people are using the ideas here to create them. It is not about children’s church services which separate children from the rest of the worshiping congregation, although I hear people are using these ideas to build those services too.
“It is really about inter-generational worship which intentionally includes God’s people of all ages in a single service. This lectionary blog offers ideas about ways to read scripture in the sanctuary so that children understand it, scripts for prayers and liturgy that draw children as well as adults into worship, plans for folding worship education (for all ages) into the worship service, and essays about how children understand and participate in worship and sacraments.
“There are two kinds of posts: 1. Lectionary-based resources: For each Sunday of the Revised Common Lectionary year, there is a post with commentary on each text from a child’s point of view and suggestions about ways to draw children into worship using those texts. Use the Lectionary and Scripture Indexes to find what you need. 2. Short articles exploring all sorts of issues related to worshiping with children. These aim to help you clarify your own thinking, introduce new possibilities, and start conversations with other worship leaders and parents who bring children to worship. Use the Topical Index to find the posts you need to read now.”
* http://spillbeans.org.uk/ (Spill the Beans)
“Spill The Beans is a set of lectionary-based resources developed by the Church of Scotland with other denominations, focussing on the stories within the Bible. Very adaptable and great value at 12 pounds per quarter. Several local congregations are using these resources now. Visit their website for samples. I’m impressed.” (JK)
* www.spiritseasons.com (Seasons of the Spirit)
“A well-known and widely used ecumenical and lectionary-based course with different materials for different age groups. Always has excellent posters which make for great art on your walls. Could be a bit expensive for some.” (JK)
Free Object-based lessons and Children’s Sermons. Also offers crafts, puzzles, songs, games, etc. Not lectionary-based, but searchable by theme. Used by some local congregations, especially when needing materials in a hurry!
Lectionary-based, ecumenically-devised materials. Used by some local Anglican congregations. Costs about $126 per annum minimum (May 2015). Great hard-copy and on-line resources for both ‘all-age / adults’ and ‘children and young people’. Recommended!
* “Feasting on the Word” (www.feastingontheword.net)
Age-specific and RCL (Lectionary) based materials. Also used locally. See their catalogue here.
* “Light” (http://www.scriptureunion.org.uk/Light/42705.id)
Bible-based, flexible resources from Scripture Union in the U.K. A wide range of options, divided into age-group bands. Not lectionary-based, but based on themes and divided into series which last from two to five weeks, so as to allow for sporadic attendance. Used by some local Anglican congregations.
A page of free, searchable, miscellaneous Sunday School lessons.
“Orange” is a large-scale American system seeking a connection between Church and Home. As well as supplying many resources for a fee, they will assign you a personal consultant to help you implement the system. Opinions vary but it is certainly popular throughout Australia, across denominations.
Produced by the UK’s Urban Saints (formerly known as Crusaders), this is a set of high quality resources, tending towards the evangelical end of the spectrum, for people aged 5-18. There is a subscription fee, but you can access some sample resources for free. Visit the site above to watch a promo video.
“TCPC has embarked on an exciting and groundbreaking journey, as we create progressive Christian children’s curriculum that celebrates a joy-filled life, compassion for all, and the wisdom found within. This is the first truly progressive Christian curriculum that is inclusive, inter-spiritual, joy-full, compassionate, and intelligent. In fact, the curriculum is just as inspiring to the teachers as it is for the children. We have teachers and pastors all over the world using the curriculum and we have gotten some incredible feedback. Some pastors are even using these inspiring stories for their children’s sermons, then basing their adult sermon on them. Each lesson has a teacher’s reflection, a full color Affirmations page to print out and take home with artwork…, inspiring quotes, fun activities that tie it all together, discussion questions, a story to bring home, and tips to bring nature and music into the lessons.”
Sunday School Management:
Sunday School environment ideas: