Sunday, July 19, 2009

Vague Ideas for Basic Faith Classes

Oh, sweet interwebs, I have missed you! *hugs 'Net* We're having 'issues' with the internet, so my connection has been iffy for a while. It's still iffy, but better, and they're sending out a tech to 'fix it' tomorrow.

So, to the post I've wanted to make for half a week.

Basic Faith class. We met with the DRE, I still find her loud and obnoxious and generally not someone I want to be around, but I'm going to go with it, and give the teaching thing a try for the year.

There's not a curriculum, per se, so Deb (the other teacher) and I are going to have to make it up ourselves. The DRE gave us books from which to take information, Exhibit A:

And we've got a vague idea of some of the things that we need to cover. The idea is an over all, general coverage of the faith - these are 6/7 year olds, so nothing too in depth. We're sort of getting them ready for the next class, which will be Eucharist & Reconciliation.
Some of the things we want to do:

1. Start the class, after an opening prayer, with a Best & Worst Thing that Happened during the week for each child. The idea is to teach them to thank God for the good, and ask God's help for the bad.

2. Vocabulary - Trinity, Incarnation, Bible, Grace, Salvation, Mary, Church, Pope, Saints, Sin, Heaven, Hell, Faith, Purgatory, the Ten Commandments, Hope, Love, Judgment, etc.

3. The Seven Sacraments - not *detail* but what the seven are, and what, in general, they entail.

4. The hierarchy of the Church.

5. The Mass - sort of a, order of the Mass, what's occuring at which point, maybe some background, but I'm not sure about that. I think the background might be too deep and boring for kids that age. But we want them to have a basic understanding of the Liturgy.

6. The basic prayers. Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory Be. Now, tied in with that, I was thinking, and I haven't discussed this with Deb yet, but as a craft, I thought that we could have the kids make their own rosary's in connection with learning the prayers. After all, that's what the rosary is (yes, there's the Creed as well, and the Hail Holy Queen, and the Jesus Prayer, but at it's heart are those three prayers). Now, I'm not as fond of the rosary as some people I know, but I do think it's an excellent tool for learning these prayers - it's how I did it - and I personally use it as a meditative device. I have trouble quieting my mind in order to pray, and I find saying a rosary helps me with that.

To that end, I experimentally made a rosary - not hard, though this one's crude.

I put it next to my other rosary's for comparison. The green one is the one I bought myself, the white one I can't recall where I got it, and the crystal one is the one they gave us in RCIA - it's my blessed rosary that I carry with me.

The hardest part was the cross at the end. I didn't have a spare cross or crucifix lying around, and I didn't have any wire around, so I had to improvise with the cord I used. I don't think it turned out that bad...

7. I do want to try and emphasize the importance of prayer in their lives. For instance, praying first thing in the morning, and then last thing before you lay down to sleep. Praying Grace before you eat, when you're having trouble, etc. But that's less a specific lesson, and more something that needs to be laced throughout the whole class.

Anyway, we're going to meet next Sunday to go over more detail, after we've had a chance to read through the books and get some ideas.


  1. Sounds awesome! Good job on the rosary, too. I meant to make one for a friend awhile ago but never got around to it...maybe for her next birthday. :)

    Oh, question. She's not Catholic, she just thinks they're pretty and wanted one. Is it offensive or wrong to have one and not use it like it's supposed to be used?

  2. Sanil,

    Thanks! It's rougher than I'd like, but I still think it turned out okay. :)

    I don't think it's offensive or wrong for her to have one, just so long as she's not using it for anything un-Christian - like witchcraft, or something else. They are pretty, and while a useful tool, unless they're blessed, they're not sacred objects.

  3. Hello Amber;
    If you are interested in getting good at making a rosary (you are quite correct, it's harder than it looks)Our Ladies Rosary Makers ( has a site with video tips on how to do it and every supply you could ever think of needing. I'm not sure if their $2 per year membership fee must be paid to order, but the instructions are free.
    Anon.(what I meant to type the last time) Lurker

  4. Anon. Lurker,

    I still like 'The Anon. Lurker'. :)

    Thanks for the link. I poked over there and looked at the directions. Basically what I did, only nicer, because they know what they're doing. :) 99% of the rosary is easy to make, it was the cross at the end that gave me fits, and that's because I did it on the spur of the moment, and wasn't prepared with supplies.

    I do want to get better, and the instructions there'll help. Plus, I want to make a wire/bead rosary.

    The cord ones though, that'd be what we make with the kids. I'm picturing bright, colorful beads. And it's easy enough that I think it'd be fun.

  5. Oh, very nice rosary! And your class plans sound really nice. I'd like to listen in on them. :)

  6. Susanne,

    Thanks! I'm hoping the class goes well. We're still planning and refining.


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