I want to welcome you to our Religious Exploration program here at the UU Fellowship of Bay County. Many families have joined our program because they are looking for a place for their kids to learn values without indoctrination, where they will be free to explore the Big Questions of life in a safe, accepting environment. That is what we are here for! The program for the Kids and Youth at the UU is centered around relationships and is all about showing them our Principles rather than telling them about them. As one parent put it, “they’re in school all week, let’s do something different on Sunday!” We would love for you and your family to join us on this adventure of child-directed learning.
All children and adolescents involved in any Religious Education program at UUOFBC, including Youth Group, must have a current, updated, registration form filled out and on file.
A new registration form needs to be filled out annually or whenever a child’s living situation changes. Any time new people wish to attend UUOFBC Religious Education classes, they can register.
Parents, children and youth do NOT need to be members of UUOFBC to register for and participate in UUOFBC Religious Education and Youth Group programs.
The doors for all children’s Religious Exploration programs open at 10:20, the program begins at 10:30.
Youth – Middle School and High School
This group meets in the office of the main building. They discuss a variety of ways a person can live the Unitarian Universalist Principles, and explore the Sources that UUs use to create our path. The Youth program is a balance between the a Unitarian Universalist curriculum, and essays written by UUs designed to help the Youth explore their own truths. Our Youth are encouraged to join the congregation if they are interested in a Service. This year, the Youth are working on getting out into the community, and are working on a community service project that they will help design.
Elementary – Grades 1 through 5
The Elementary class meets in the Little Red School House, across from the handicapped entrance to the main building. Our Elementary has a fun and exciting new program this year: Spirit Play! This amazing program is biased in the Montessori style of teaching and encourages the kids to form relationships within their community, and with the stories that they will hear. The classroom is designed to be child friendly, and to keep materials at child height. Each week, the Elementary class will have a different story basket, designed to capture their attention, and based on Unitarian Universalist stories, histories, or principles. After the story basket is completed, the children will have a time to wonder and ask questions about the story they just heard. There will then be roughly 20 minutes of work time, when the children are encouraged to use the materials on the shelves to further explore the stories that they have heard in the year.
Nursery/Preschool – Ages 9 months through Kindergarten
This group meets in the Nursery, directly across from the office in the main building. They will be working with a young version of Spirit Play. They will have a 5 minute story basket presented to them each week. Afterwards, they will have the option to further explore the story through an art response, or to play. If the day is nice, they may go outside to explore the world. In this safe place, our budding students begin to learn the value of their voice an how to work together and listen.
I hope that you will find yourself at home here as much as my family does!
Gienah Harris, Religious Education Coordinator
If you would like more information about our Programs, Religious Exploration office hours at the UU are Tuesday 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. or by appointment. You can reach Gienah by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also call the UU at (850) 763-7495.