Through the talents of church members, the goal of Religious Education at Unitarian Universalist Church West is to:
9:15 am – 10:30 am and 11:00 am – 12:15 pm
Unitarian Universalist Church West offers two worship services and two religious education programs on Sunday mornings from the Sunday after Labor Day until the Sunday before the Memorial Day weekend. During the summer, we offer worship and Religious Education at 10:00 am.
Worship for All Ages: Children and youth join their families in the Sanctuary for the first portion of the service before leaving for their religious education sessions. Additional opening and closing worship circles take place in the class groups.
Please do not enter the group rooms before the sessions are over at 10:30am or 12:15pm. If worship service ends before this time, please visit during the social hour. Please pick up your children promptly at the session-ending time. Children in the Nursery, Air, and Earth groups need to be picked up in person by the parents. Older children may be released directly to the Community Room, where families may mingle after services.
Visitors are always welcome at UUCW and in our religious education sessions. Please stop at the Visitor’s Table in the church lobby on any Sunday that you are visiting, and you will be directed to the appropriate group rooms. For your child’s safety, all visitors to our religious education program must fill out a visitor sign-in form. Email addresses are appreciated!
You do not need to be members of the church to register, but all who frequently use the religious education program are expected to make a financial contribution to UUCW and to volunteer in some capacity in the program. Please check with the Director of Religious Education to determine the most appropriate group placement for your child. Register online on the link to the left.
We use email communications to share information about coming events, special projects, class newsletters, and volunteer scheduling. Please check your email regularly. Please see our website regularly for more detailed, up-to-date information including weekly lesson plan descriptions, sermons online, newsletter articles, and upcoming events.
UUCW uses an educational model inspired by the Montessori learning method. This non-instructional, child-centered model encourages children to wonder, question, and work out their answers creatively in a comfortable environment that supports multiple learning styles.
Group Room Guides: Two session-leaders work cooperatively in distinct roles, lending consistency to their interrelationship and to the development of the session time.
Worship: Each session begins and ends with a regular ritual including a chalice lighting and a reading, prayer, meditation, song, blessing, or sharing.
Sacred Time: Religious education is separated from regular experience through the predictable rhythm and flow of time. The morning has a structure that honors the spirit within each child.
Multi-age groupings are a creative aspect of the Montessori Method that encourages dynamic interaction between children, creates bonded community, and nurtures multiple learning styles and interest-levels.
Curriculum rotations allow for focus in four major areas throughout the years:
Ours is a cooperative program. There is no fee for religious education at UUCW because in addition to their envelope or pledge donations, each family volunteers in one of two main areas. (First-year participants are not expected to volunteer. Please enjoy our community and settle in.)
Session leaders work in pairs with a regular partner to co-facilitate lessons about ten Sundays per year based upon a rotating schedule. Teachers are encouraged to choose their own partners, and pick together their teaching dates. The two teachers work together to prepare the space, create a community of children, present the lesson or story, guide discussion and “wondering” questions, assist with art response projects and group activities, and bring the time to a close. Our program is dependent on dedicated volunteers who want to contribute to the future of our children, our church, and the principles of Unitarian Universalism. Session plans, supplies, and administrative support are provided. You will deepen your faith as you guide the children.
Supporting the Director of Relgious Education, Religious Education Council members choose to concentrate in some of these areas: