By Eden Lewis, Diocesan Director for Lifelong Formation
Trying to figure out what curriculum to use seems daunting, especially when we are super busy. I tend to do this when I have 20 minutes, and by the time I am done, I have 20 tabs open in my browser. Then I am more overwhelmed than when I started. Sound familiar?
So, where do we go from here?
I recently read a great post on Building Faith on how to find the best curriculum for your church and want to share their recommendations on where to start.
First, they recommended taking a moment to ensure “You know who you are” i.e. “What is your mission or faith statement?”. How will the curriculum model fit the church's mission, and will it meet the community's needs? These might seem like hard questions to ask when you are just trying to get something started, but if these are considered from the beginning then there is a better chance for engagement from the community because the offers resonate with the church members.
Second, what are the practical needs? Do you have the space, volunteers, and supplies to offer the programming? If the answer is yes, a deeper dive would be helpful. If the answer is no, then move on to something doable with what you currently have in place. The shiniest programming isn’t always the best.
Third, “don’t forget the implicit content.” This means it is important to consider the people leading when selecting a curriculum. You can choose the most theologically sound curriculum, but if it doesn’t fit your volunteers' teaching styles, it might not be the best fit. The implicit content can make or break the curriculum because of the energy a volunteer brings to the table.
Finally, research key websites based on age, season, or theme. Below is a list of websites that are a good starting point.
Want to do a deeper dive? Click here for more questions to help with discernment.