Our curriculum is based on the Biblical tradition of our Judeo-Christian heritage. We incorporate the study of other religions, issues of social justice and moral choice. We have found that no standard, “packaged” curriculum satisfies the needs of our diverse community. Our teachers draw on many sources to prepare lessons.
Sunday School (Ages 6-18)
Children and youth meet twice a month before church for an hour in a “one-room schoolhouse” model. Their time together is structured not by a set curriculum but by projects which are directly tied to worship and service.
For example, in September and October, our children and youth prepare a Reformation Day pageant focusing on a religious figure from the historical legacy of the Eliot Church. The youth and children will research, write, create the costumes for, and perform this pageant as a centerpiece of the worship on Reformation Day. Each of these tasks is led by an older youth, with guidance from adults.
Religious Education in the Eliot Church goes beyond projects and worship on Sunday mornings! It is also about teaching our children and youth how to build a community of friendship and support. We do this through a series of social activities and parties. These meetings will typically be on Friday Night, and involve food and a fun community building event.
Confirmation (Grades 8-10)
Confirmation is open to any 8th through 10th grader who wishes to join the church as an adult. Confirmands examine and explore their own religious and ethical beliefs over the course of the year with the guidance of an adult mentor. This culminates with the development of a faith statement, delivered at the Children’s Sunday service in the second week in June. This is a year-long process that happens concurrently with the our Sunday School Program.
High School Youth Group (Grades 9-12)
High School Youth Groupers at the Eliot Church get the best of both worlds. They are leaders in the Sunday School program, participate in social activities and parties with the other youth in the church and, after they join the church, act as full members. Students at this age participate fully in the life of the church as adults, serve as deacons and on other church committees, and attend worship regularly.
Other Opportunities for Children and Youth
Ukestra (Ages 13-130) The Ukestra is the Eliot Church’s intergenerational folk music ministry. Open to all over the age of 13, this group is primarily Ukulele based, although guitars and banjos are occasionally tolerated. They perform in church about 4 times a year, with other opportunities available for particularly interested folks.
Dungeons and Dragons Club (ages 10-20) – Once a month, church youth meet after worship to participate in an ongoing role-playing game led by our pastor, Adam Tierney-Eliot. The level of gaming experience of our participants varies. If you are interested, please contact Adam or Felicia (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Lay Readers and Volunteer Musicians – Our youth are especially invited to be involved in our lay reader and volunteer musician program.
Children’s Sunday– Second Sunday in June, conducted entirely by our children and Youth.
We also participate in a variety of community service activities as a congregation, which children and youth are a vital part of:
- Family Promise Metrowest
- Open Door Community Dinner
- Food Pantry Donations
- Christmas Toy Donations
- Natick Service Council Activities
- Community Outreach