Religious Education Classes

Classes are offered year-round during Sunday Service from 10:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. Click here for curriculum details.

Infant and toddler care is available during Sunday Services and during many Fellowship functions.

Children are enrolled by age in children's classes.  We have classes for pre-school, kindergarten and first grade, second and third grade, fourth and fifth grade, and middle school students.

 

Click here for the online registration form.

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UUFSB is a Safe Congregation that strives to protect children.  To find out more about what that means, click here.

Parent Information for Children's Religious Education Program - 2013-2014

Parent Information:  We welcome you to our Religious Education Program.  You are welcome to stay with your child in Worship Circle and in their classroom for as long as it takes them to be comfortable without you.  Regular attendance makes a real difference in your child's religious education.  It helps your child establish friendships and provides a sense of continuity for students and leaders alike. We will need you to assist a leader for five Sundays during the year.  In addition, if you have a skill or talent to share, please let us know and/or volunteer.  We invite you to participate in whatever ways you can.  To learn about what is happening, both in the Religious Education program and in the Fellowship, sign up for and read our newsletter, the e-Unicorn.

Children's classes:  Classes begin at the same time as services (10:30am) and end at 11:45am, after snacks and clean up.  Your children will attend classes with others in their age group, although siblings may stay together at first if they wish. On most Sundays the children grades pre-school through third grade will meet for Worship Circles prior to going to their age-appropriate class.  Childcare is available during the service in Room 2, the Nursery.  Please ask a greeter and they will direct you.

Budget information:  There is no fee for children's classes.  Our program depends entirely on contributions to the general budget so we urge parents to pledge to the Fellowship whether or not they are members.  Our annual pledge drive occurs in the spring.  At that time, you will be asked to donate to the budget from which the Religious Education Program receives its funds.

Questions/Concerns?:  If you have questions about the program or Unitarian Universalist Religious Education, or have concerns, please contact one our Director of Religious Education, Gretta Johnson-Sally at or 631-751-0297.

Registration: To register your child, click here to fill out an online form.  Or click here for a printable form you can complete and return to the Religious Education Office.  Although you must register your child, registration does not obligate you to any fee.  We are, however, a cooperative and parents /guardians are expected to share their time, talents and skills with the Fellowship community.  We expect that non-teaching parents will assist in the classroom five times each year, in addition to volunteering in some other area.  We invite you to participate in whatever ways you can.

Thank you!

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UUFSB is a Safe Congregation that strives to protect children and youth.  To find out more about what that means, click here.

UUFSB is a Safe Congregation that strives to protect children and youth.  To find out more about what that means, click here.

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TAPESTRY OF FAITH

Embodying a faith development focus for our congregations, Tapestry of Faith is a series of programs and resources for all ages that nurture Unitarian Universalist identity, spiritual growth, a transforming faith, and vital communities of justice and love.

The Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) has created the first ever online lifespan curriculum for our congregations. Each program includes stories, activities, worship and social action ideas to nurture people in ethics, spirit, and faith. Every session features Taking It Home and Find Out More sections for families to explore at home. And parents can go online and read the curriculum that their children are experiencing in their congregation each week.

2016-2017 CLASSES

Nursery - Infants and toddlers (3 and under)
Child Care Providers: Devon Hempe, Saimoen Anderson, Aurelia Masters, Daniella Kata

For the youngest children, we provide warm, friendly care. We ask parents to stay with their children until they feel comfortable. Please pick up your children as soon as the service ends.

Four- to Seven-Year-Olds
Leaders: Melissa Albanese, Jamie Casper-Cusumano and Kat Maggio-Straub with parent assistants

World of Wonder:  Founded on the premise that direct experience in nature is essential to children's physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual development, this program delves deep into our Unitarian Universalist seventh Principle. It instills respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part and appreciation of its beauty, excitement and mystery.

Program Goals:

  • Nurture a sense of wonder and respect for the interdependent web of all existence
  • Engage children in direct experiences with the web, especially outdoors
  • Promote a deep understanding of the concept of interdependence
  • Teach basic environmental concepts and processes
  • Provide meaningful ways in which children can positively impact and promote the health of the interdependent web.

Website: ww.uua.org/re/tapestry/children/wonder


Third, Fourth and Fifth Grades 

Leaders: Wendy Engelhardt, Linda Volkersz and Suzanne Goldstein with parent assistants

Signs of Our Faith: Being UU Every Day:  Our UUA President, Rev. Morales, asks us to think about religion as the practice of being faithful to what you love. In order to do this, you must decide what you love and do your best to live that love faithfully every day. Signs of Our Faith guides children to do their best to live faithful lives every day. It presents fourteen traits or values that most Unitarian Universalist love, including the quest for knowledge, reverence for life, supporting one another on our faith journeys, and public witness. Children examine how their lives do and can exhibit these traits and values, and come to understand that their faith is a living faith whose histories and teachings are fortifications for living faithfully in a complex world.

Program Goals:

  • Explore kinds of power that can be used to create positive change
  • Enrich Unitarian Universalist identity with stories of people who used their power for the sake of "justice, compassion, and the transforming power of love"
  • Develop participants' sense of themselves as leaders
  • Promote exercising one's own powers to create positive change, even in very small ways
  • Build community, with an emphasis on the power of religious community to change the world for the better. 

Website: www.uua.org/re/tapestry/children/signs 

 
YOUTH PROGRAMS

Sixth-Eighth Grades: Middle School

Leaders: Dan Dunmire, Rich Hall, Jaymie Meliker and guest speakers

The Fifth Dimension - a curriculum based on Unitarian Universalist Rod Serling's series, "The Twilight Zone". Competing for a youth’s attention can be difficult today. Widespread television viewing, video game playing, and internet surfing has created an environment where youth need visual stimulation to maintain interest. Pop culture can help to channel this environment into a learning opportunity, allowing youth to examine ethical and theological issues, while having fun.  In addition, pop culture can help youth to discuss important social issues with peers. Talking about social issues with peers can be daunting, particularly if the youth lives and goes to school in a conservative atmosphere and knows that his/her viewpoint is not necessarily shared by the majority of his/her peers. Referencing a television show, a movie, a song, or a website can help youth express their opinions to others.

Program Goals:

  • Consider social issues and the ways in which our faith can help us understand our values.
  • Understand ways in which the right of conscience calls us to do what’s right, even if there are possible negative consequences.
  • Examine how our choices affect others around us, as well as ourselves.
  • Explore how taking a stand is related to perspective and point of view.

 7-8-9: Junior High OWL (Our Whole Lives) offered afternoons in the fall through LIAC

7-8-9: COA (Coming of Age) offered afternoons in the spring through LIAC


Eighth-Twelfth Grades: Senior High Youth Group

10-11-12: Senior High OWL (Our Whole Lives) offered afternoons in the winter through LIAC

Youth Group Leaders: Melissa Elliott-Brogan, Ted Masters, Judd Kramarcik, Gretta Johnson-Sally with other UUFSB helpers

Young people meet and discuss topics ranging from current issues in Unitarian Universalism and other religions, to their spirituality. The Youth Group, which meets on Sundays, from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m., shares a meal, has a youth worship and business meeting. They plan activities and social action projects within our Fellowship as well as in the community. Many youth also attend CONs (youth conferences) to spend time with other Unitarian Universalist Youth.

Program Goals:

  • Encourage participants to see themselves as belonging to a Unitarian Universalist community and being integral to the covenantal community’s wholeness
  • Encourage social justice activities so that participants will see that they can give back to their community and make a difference
  • Help participants recognize that they are inheritors of a Unitarian Universalist theological history as well as co-creators in the future of our living tradition
  • Creatively employ technology to facilitate learning and community building
  • Inspire youth to become young adults who are kind, respectful, fair-minded, caring and strong enough to stand up for what is right

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UUCONNECT is a Long Island wide group of Unitarian Universalist families. Events are planned monthly throughout Long Island. In the past, these events have included: an apple-picking afternoon, a skating party, a Talent Show and Pasta Night, Picnics at Jones Beach and Eisenhower Park and an annual trip to New York City. Parents are required to attend with younger children. Senior High youth may attend on their own with parental permission. It is an excellent opportunity for our children and youth to meet other Unitarian Universalists.

The UU Principles for children in words and song

1. We believe that each and every person is important.  "Each person is important."
2. We believe that all people should be treated fairly.  "Be kind in all you do."
3. We believe that our Churches and Fellowshiops are places where people are accepted and where we keep learning together. "We're free to learn together."
4. We believe that each person must be free to search for what is true and right in life.   "And search for what is true."
5. We believe that everyone should have a vote about the thngs that concern them.    "Each person needs a voice.
Give everyone a vote."
6. We believe in working for a peaceful, fair and free world.  "Build a fair and peaceful world."
7. We believe in caring for our planet Earth.  "Take care of earth's life boat'. Hey!"

*Words for the Seven Principles Song

HOW DO WE TEACH THE PRINCIPLES?

The Religious Education Committee (REC):

We teach the principles by the use of curricula published by the UU Dept. of Education at our headquarters in Boston and by other religious education publishers. The curricula are written and edited by Unitarian Universalist religious educators and field-tested in UU societies before final publication. Our Religious Education Committee here at Stony Brook (many of whom are educators) chooses from among the many curricula offered to make our own individual program. In these many curricula, the UU principles are taught in ways that are tailored to the developmental abilities of the children. We also sing the Principle Song*.

The Teacher Volunteer:

Each leader in the classroom begins with a genuine love and respect for the children. He or she brings their own background and faith experience as motivation for teaching children about our principles. In our program, we have many dedicated and caring leaders who want our children to learn about UUism.

The Parent as Religious Educator:

We encourage parents to educate themselves so they are familiar with the UU Principles. In this way, you will be able to talk about them to your child. We also have several books on Unitarian Universalism that you can borrow or buy. Pamphlets are in the lobby to introduce various aspects of our beliefs.

During the course of the year, the RE Committee plans and leads two family worship services. These are the Winter Holiday Service and the Spring Festivals Service. These services are intended to educate children and youth about our Christian, Jewish and Pagan roots and reinforce them in ritual celebrations.

In addition, we support the UU Seder meal and the annual Recognition Service and Service of the Living Tradition (which includes the Flower Communion Ceremony) - services that further educate our children in our faith traditions.

You, the Congregation:

To use an expression, it takes a village to raise a child. The congregation must teach by example and model what Unitarian Universalism is about and what our religion stands for. Every interaction, every contact during and after classes, teaches our young people about our religion. The RE & Social Action Committees organize activities for young people,but you too are teaching our children and youth. By bringing your family to participate in clean-up days at the Fellowship, by volunteering at Hobbs Farm, by helping set up or clean up after a service or an event, you teach by example. By observing your actions, by volunteering, by participating, our children and youth become part of our community, have ownership in our Fellowship and learn how UU's act out their faith.

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UUFSB is a Safe Congregation that strives to protect children and youth. To find out more about what that means, click here.

Mission and Goals of the UUFSB RE Program

The Religious Education (RE) Committee coordinates with the Director of Religious Education (DRE) in order to create and implement a liberal Religious Education program for our children (Pre K- 12). We fulfill our mission by:

(1) teaching our children and youth about their UU identity, and to question and find their own spiritual path,

(2) increasing awareness regarding issues of social responsibility,

(3) fostering intergenerational experiences,

(4) encouraging social relationships among our children and youth,

(5) providing an emotionally and physically safe, secure, nurturing environment.

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UUFSB is a Safe Congregation that strives to protect children and youth.  To find out more about what that means, click here.