May nUUs from Religious Education

A community of Creativity


Hi again!

If you are wondering about upcoming construction at South Church, and how our programming for children and youth will be impacted, click HERE.

In this post… 

  • Family resources for this month’s theme of Creativity: scroll to the last part of this newsletter, enjoy, share what your family discovers together!
  • Facility update for Parents and RE Volunteers-  Sunday, May 6 from 10-11. (congregational meeting with even more info, 12:30-2pm)
  • Sparks and Flames final gathering..(5th-6th and 7th-8th grade social groups)  Friday, May 4th, at 7-9pm
  • Final Families Tuugether – May 12th- A fun night for kids and some inspired free time for parents!
  • Mother’s Day Flower Sale! Sunday, May 13th. Hanging baskets (beautiful gifts!) from Wentworth gardens to benefit the Senior Youth Immigration Justice trip.
  • Save the dates: 
    • June 3rd: is our annual Bridging service. All of our children and youth participate in this special worship, and we also take some time to celebrate our graduating high school seniors. You don’t want to miss it!
    • June 10th: Coming of Age worship. Our 8th grade Coming of Age students will be sharing their faith statements, created from this year long exploratory program. It is at once an inspiring and deeply meaningful worship, illuminating the complexity of faith formation in our UU community.
  • Religious Education this month- 
    • Children’s Chapel will be offered for children age 4 years through 5th grade this Sunday, May 6th.
    • 6th-7th grade Religious Exploration class is visiting the Greek Orthodox church this week. RSVP if your child plans to attend the field trip!
    • Beginning May 13th, all children and youth are invited to engage with our new Summer format- Read all about it here.
    • Sign up here  -to help with the outer balcony, or to help supervise worship in the balcony at 9 or 11am beginning May 13th.

Read More… 

Facility update- a meeting for Parents and RE Volunteers-  Sunday, May 6 from 10-11. This informational meeting is taking the place of our scheduled theme talk. I will be sharing details about the upcoming changes to our facility, and laying out our program plan. A great place to ask questions, share concerns, and offer ideas! There is a congregational meeting from 12:30-2pm which will be led by our Board of Trustees, as well, with lots more details about the overall facility improvement plan, but not as much on the topic of Religious Education specifically.

Sparks and Flames final gathering ( 5th-6th and 7th-8th grade social groups)  Friday, May 4th, at 7-9pm. End of year celebration with a few rounds of everyone’s favorite game! Bring a water bottle, a favorite snack, and wear sneakers. Please RSVP so I know you’re child is coming! Still need one more parent volunteer as well!

Families Tuugether – May 12th- 4:30-8pm  Open to children 8 months through Sixth grade, Families Tuugether is a popular program for families of young kids; an opportunity for parents to reconnect and to recharge. Offered monthly during the church year, children are dropped off at South Church at 4:30pm with a potluck dish to share (Ready to serve, please.), and parents head up to the sanctuary for a short group gathering before heading out to enjoy some quite time. Children will strengthen friendships, enjoy a movie, and play fun games. Parents return to get their child no later than 8pmPlease note: Families MUST RSVP (  if they plan to come to this event, so that we are able to meet the staffing needs. Program is be closed after 25 children register, to ensure we have a safe and fun event.

Family resources for the month of May: ‘We are a community of creativity’  

One of the wonderful things about theme based church is that there are multiple opportunities for parents and children to explore a specific idea throughout each month. [From Soul Matters RE Packet:] These resources support parents as they try to live out and engage our themes with their children. We can ask “What does it mean to be a parent of Balance” or “What does it mean to be a family of Balance?” As you use these resources to engage these questions, keep in mind some additional ways to use them with other parents or your church community:  [Pssss…. The secret word to enter the book giveaway this month is: teamwork!- mention it to Kirsten to have your family entered to win!]  

  • Reflect with those in your family.
  • Share and discuss them with other parents or another family.
  • Use them in a Parent Circle that meets on Sunday afternoon or mid-week.
Create an Exhibit on Family Diversity:

Family Diversity Projects has created seven award-winning traveling photo-text exhibits that tour communities nationwide and internationally.  YOU CAN BRING one or more of the easy-to-display exhibitions to your community venue: school (K-12), college, house of worship, library, workplace, corporate headquarters, conference, etc.

Resources for staying creative in UU about racism   “My co-teacher and I are moving from 5th grade to 3rd grade, and although our students will be younger and even more literal in their thinking and understanding, we will continue to talk about current events. We don’t have a choice. This work is too important to stop because it is scary, uncomfortable, or difficult.”

Book for Parents:
  • Bored and Brilliant, by Manoush Zomorodi (Author) “In 2015 Manoush Zomorodi, host of WNYC’s popular podcast and radio show Note to Self, led tens of thousands of listeners through an experiment to help them unplug from their devices, get bored, jump-start their creativity, and change their lives. Bored and Brilliant builds on that experiment to show us how to rethink our gadget use to live better and smarter in this new digital ecosystem. Manoush explains the connection between boredom and original thinking, exploring how we can harness boredom’s hidden benefits to become our most productive and creative selves without totally abandoning our gadgets in the process.” – Amazon
  • 10 Ways to Teach Your Kids to be Problem Solvers “Kids of all ages learn most in the context of play. Make sure their play involves enough challenge and requires imagination…” – from the article.
  • The Vital Obstacles in the Creative Process, by Parker Palmer “Artistry” is not confined to folks who create verbal, visual, or musical forms of beauty. I know people who are artists at parenting, friendship, gardening, manual labor, teaching, leadership, problem-solving, care-giving, peace-making, or just plain living!” – Palmer
  • Celebrating All Who Mother (for Mother’s Day), UU World article by Michelle Richards
  • Divine Questions (about God), UU World Article by Michelle Richards
  • Remembering Liberation on Memorial Day The very first Memorial Day, the story goes, was originated by newly freed slaves in Charleston, South Carolina, who gathered May 5, 1865, to express their gratitude to the Union soldiers who had perished in an open-air Confederate prison.
  • How Adults Can Encourage Kids to Be Original Thinkers The author, Adam Grant “writes about the importance of getting kids to take risks, to embrace their own curiosity and to be confident in where their minds wander. So how can adults create spaces and cultures of originality to breed these new ideas?”
  • The Arts and Creative Problem Solving  “Engagement in the arts offers a wonderful starting point for parents who want to develop and exercise their children’s creative problem-solving skills. It might seem counterintuitive to think of the arts as a place for critical thinking and problem solving, as we typically associate softer qualities such as appreciation of beauty, encouragement of personal expression, and nurturing talent with artistic pursuits.”
Movies for families about Creativity
  • Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs  “Based loosely on the popular children’s book Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, this animated adventure takes the book’s story about a town where weather provides fully cooked meals and turns it into a 3-D fantasy about Flint Lockwood (voiced by Bill Hader), a young inventor who creates a device that transforms water into food.” – Common Sense Media
  • Mary Poppins– is one creative problem solver!
  • Hugo (PG)  Best for 8+. “In this 1930s-set adaptation of Brian Selznick’s Caldecott-winning novel, 12-year-old HUGO (Asa Butterfield) is an orphan who lives in a Paris train station. His prized possession is an automaton (mechanical man) that his late father rescued from museum archives before his death. Hugo steals from the various shops at the train station to get by, but when he attempts to swipe a wind-up mouse from eccentric toy seller Georges (Ben Kingsley), he embarks on an adventure that leads him to uncover exactly what the automaton is and why it’s important.” – Common Sense Media
Fun Cell phone Apps!
  • Mac, Izzy and Friends  “Parents need to know that Mac, Izzy & Friends is a collection of activities designed to encourage creative exploration and expression. Kids can explore videos, stories, and drawing tools; they can also manipulate audio recordings and visuals, create and put together puzzles, and more. Once kids get the hang of how to navigate the app, they can play on their own, but this is also a really great app for parents and kids to play together, on- and off-screen. Free.” – Common Sense Media review
  •  Toontastic 3D “Toontastic 3D has all the fun features of the original, but the developer has partnered with Google, and this updated version has new scenes and 3D characters. Kids choose a scene and characters — or design their own — and are then given some basic guidance on constructing their own animated stories.” – Common Sense Media review

Upcoming Themes (2018-2019 Church Year):

What Does It Mean to be a People of…
September:  Vision
October:  Sanctuary
November:  Memory
December:  Mystery
January:  Possibility
February:  Trust
March:  Journey
April:  Wholeness
May:  Curiosity
June:  Beauty

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