As an act of shameless self-promotion, I’m posting the following announcement for a workshop I’ll be leading this sumer. Please pass this along to anyone who might be interested.
Running a small religious education (RE) program can be challenging, but it can also offer unique rewards for children, teens, and adult volunteers. This week-long workshop will help participants unlock the potential of small programs. The workshop is aimed at RE Committee members, Sunday school teachers, concerned parents, DREs, and ministers. The workshop will benefit small churches with small programs, larger churches that run small mixed-age programs (e.g., summer programs, programs during low-attendance worship services), “one-room schoolhouse” programs, and churches that don’t have an RE program right now but want to start one.
Topics to be covered include: working with small mixed-age groups of children, finding curriculum for small programs, working with tiny youth groups, motivating volunteers, finding classroom space, administering your program, marketing on a low budget, and figuring out what to do when your program grows (or shrinks). If you are trying to run a program with between 0 and 25 young people, this workshop will have something for you!
This week-long program will take place from Sat., July 11, through Fri., July 17, as part of Religious Education Week at Ferry Beach Conference Center in Saco, Maine. Visit the Ferry Beach Web site for cost; for the least inexpensive option, you can camp in Ferry Beach’s beautiful campsite and cook your own meals.
Rev. Dan Harper, the workshop leader, knows and loves small RE programs. Dan served as a Director of Religious Education in a small church Sunday school that tripled in size during his tenure. He currently serves as a parish minister in a small church with a growing Sunday school. Dan was also the interim religious educator at the Church of the Larger Fellowship, where he developed resources for tiny church schools and isolated UU families.