Paris District 'One Room Sunday School' workshop

5/13/2009

By Elyse Bell
Paris Lay Resource Leader  

Ten Paris District churches sent representatives to the April 26 workshop entitled “One Room Sunday School” hosted by the Paris District at Bethesda UMC. It was designed specifically for small membership churches that have only a few children who range in age from three to twelve. The training event drew 30 participants including teachers, education chairpersons, Sunday school superintendents, and pastors.
 
 We intentionally planned this event at a small membership church since the environment is consistent with that of their churches. By having a program in place with teachers already trained, we felt we were meeting the needs of children who are currently enrolled as well as newcomers who are more likely to return for a second or third visit.
 
 After a brief explanation of the curriculum, Mary Carolyn McLeary and I simulated a Sunday school classroom experience—complete with worship center, Bible verse, prayer, crayons, scissors and glue—with four volunteers playing the role of the children.
 
As I have traveled throughout the Paris District visiting many small membership churches, the primary concern expressed was the need for more young people, especially children. I began examining various curricula and it seemed the “One Room Sunday School” was designed with them in mind. 
 
Together in one classroom, children can experience God’s Word and share their growing faith. It is a comprehensive Bible lesson with activities for three different age levels: the non-reader, the beginning reader, and the skilled reader.               
         
We pray this was a most joyous and successful experience for our small membership churches and hope to offer more events like it in the future. •