Saturday, January 31, 2015

CONFIRMATION: Reflection Essay

It's that time of year when confirmation educators are looking for some way to show that the years spent every Wednesday have been faith building. It's not an easy thing to do because we can't really tell when faith grows and let's be honest, we're talking about 13-14 year old kids whose brains aren't fully developed yet. So, why do we do culminating projects like having kids write a reflective essay about what they believe? Because the only way to know what they believe is for them to tell us. My overarching question when teaching kids and religion and faith is this, "What do you believe and why do you believe it?" If they can answer that in their own words, then they will feel more comfortable talking about it.

Until we make a change in how and when we teach confirmation, we should know the best way to teach middle school aged students and how to help them share with us what they're thinking and what they believe. One way is to have them write a reflective essay. I posted on this before and also put it in my book, The Art of Teaching Confirmation, but I added a worksheet to help kids organize their thoughts on paper.
Here are two resources that will help.
I pray they provide some guidance to your students in this area.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

EDUCATION: More than just don't do drugs.

Somebody recently asked a question about doing a Bible study on drugs. I found a few great resources to share. 

Focus on the Family has something good from a Biblical perspective. It can basically be a whole Bible study or more if you really discuss the issues. Never assume your youth don't or have never used drugs just because they go to church, and don't forget to ask the hard questions. It shows you are interested and care about them.

Another great resource is Drug Free World. There is a lot of detailed info about specific drugs and how they affect the body. There's a booklet/slideshow and short documentaries by real people. Anybody who leads a Bible study on drugs should use the information on this site to be sure they know what they're talking about. 

It's not, "Just say NO!"