Children & Youth at Live Oak UU Fellowship
The mission of our Children's Religious Education/Exploration (RE) program is to nourish a sense of community, help our young people value themselves and others, develop an appreciation for the beliefs of other religions and an understanding of Unitarian Universalism. We strive to foster in the children a sense of personal and social responsibility to our world and its inhabitants, while encouraging an experience of wonder. We also hope each young person will fully experience the joy of being an integral member of a loving UU church. See our current brochure about our program.
Children & Youth Religious Exploration Team
The Children & Youth Religious Exploration (CYRE) Committee will be happy to answer any questions about Live Oak's program or team. Email firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll connect you with the best person to answer your questions. We strive to have an outstanding, experienced teacher working with our children. We are now in the process of looking for our next CYRE teacher (see job posting below), who will be assisted by Elena Waller, our regular paid CYRE assistant. Occasionally adults from our congregation help out, too.
Our CYRE team includes Sylvia Balding, Ximena Rossi, Angie Watson-Hajjem, and chair Kathryn Duke. In addition, the wonderful Brooke Bishara, who is our outgoing CYRE teacher, continues to teach our children while we interview and seek our next terrific teacher.
Live Oak is committed to developing a religious community that actively involves children. Our children and youth participate in our worship service for the first 15-20 minutes each Sunday. Children help light the Chalice candle and participate in the Story for All Ages section of the service. Adults then sing them out to their classes. Visitors (children and parents alike!) are always welcome to attend CYRE classes. Likewise, children are welcome to stay in the sanctuary with a parent, if they prefer.
We offer religious exploration through activities, stories, crafts, and walks to nearby sites of interest. Most recently we used Spirit of Adventure: UU Identity Curriculum. Written especially for active primary and elementary age kids, it features unique themes, such as sports, medicine, architecture, science and food. The kids enjoy active play such as circus arts, a "take apart party," obstacle course, and a treasure hunt.
We also provide time for the kids to socialize and play together -- and to join the larger community for our communal meal after worship and/or class. We are also fortunate to have an outdoor play area with equipment.
How We Fulfill Our Mission
- Teaching about the world’s religions, including our own
- Fostering social responsibility and personal growth by participation in service projects for our community and outside groups
- Providing instruction in UU principles and practices to assist children and youth in forming their own belief system
- Ensuring a safe learning environment
- Providing activities and rituals
- Integrating our children into our church community and the greater UU denomination
- Providing knowledge of UU history to help children build confidence in their own UU identity.