It is by gathering on Sundays that we are transformed from individual seekers to a community filled with the spirit of life. It is in gathering as a Unitarian Universalist religious community that we learn to love ourselves, love each other, and do good work throughout the world. Our Religious Exploration program is designed to enable children and youth to participate in the mystery of the universe by freely questioning, developing spiritually, acting ethically, and growing in relationship with Unitarian Universalism. Our program focuses on the theological, spiritual, and ethical development of children and youth at all stages in their lives. We seek to be a strong supportive guide in the religious life of the entire family. The Tapestry of Faith curriculum developed by the Unitarian Universalist Association is an engaging and holistic program that is deeply rooted in our faith, theology and social justice work. Children, youth and adults are challenged and guided to grow their souls and create peace in themselves and the world.
What We Are Exploring in Elementary School This Year
World of Wonder for Kindergarten-1st Grade
This program delves deep into our Unitarian Universalist Seventh Principle. It instills respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part, and appreciation of its beauty, excitement, and mystery. It is founded on the premise that direct experience in nature is essential to children’s physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual development. Time spent experiencing and exploring nature during the kindergarten and first grade years can set a pattern for the rest of children’s lives, bringing lasting openness to the wonder nature can spark.
Signs of Our Faith engages children to explore ritual practices of our faith that remind us of these traits and values. Some of the rituals are enacted in the congregation. Some we conduct alone, or in our interactions with family, friends, and peers; others are offered to the wider world. This program helps children understand the abstract concept of a ritual by naming rituals as signs of our faith. Rituals are defined broadly, so that naming and dedicating a baby is a ritual, but so too is befriending a new child at school. Through the concept of “ritual,” children discover evidence of their faith in everyday actions and are encouraged to ritualize or form into habit such traits as caring, welcoming, and making fair group decisions.
Sing to the Power for 4th-5th Grades
Sing to the Power affirms our Unitarian Universalist heritage of confronting “powers and structures of evil with justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love.” Participants experience their own power, and understand how it can help them to be leaders. Sing to the Power uses a metaphor of the four elements—earth, air, fire, and water—as a framework to explore different forms of power.
What’s Happening This Month
June 4 – All Children and youth start in the education building
- World of Wonder – Grades K-1: USING OUR SENSES OF WONDER In this final session, the class will focus on their sense of wonder. Please have children dress for the weather.
- Signs of our Faith – Grades 2-3: SIGNS OF FAITHFUL LEADERSHIP This session concludes the program by affirming children’s connection to our Unitarian Universalist history and future. Children will receive their final emblem. A group photo will be taken.
- Grades 4-5: We will review our year and celebrate all we learned about leadership.
June 11 – Multi-generational Worship Service followed by All-church Barbecue
- Flower Communion Sunday: Bring a flower to the service to share with the East Shore community in our annual flower communion. This tradition celebrates beauty, human uniqueness, diversity, and community. East Shore’s high school youth group will help celebrate this multi-generational event.
June 18 – Summer RE Begins!
Children will begin in the sanctuary each week and will then move to Room 201 in the Education building for an 8 week summer curriculum on the seven principles “We Believe”
Youth may opt to attend the “We Believe” class, attend worship service, play board games in room 202 or join our Youth Group advisor Amanda in “Digging Deep – garden ministry” outdoors in the sun. They are required to stay in the group they chose for the entire Sunday but may switch groups from week to week.
Summer volunteers are needed sign up here.
There will be no summer RE on July 2, 23, and August 13th