April 14, 2016—I always tell congregations that right after Easter is the time to begin evaluating the current programmatic year, especially if a church seeks to discern a new curricular resource to use with children, youth, and/or adults. So this comes a little earlier than in past years, with Easter just days away.
You’ll find my processes and recommendations for evaluation and choosing resources here.
Here are the updated charts that compare a variety of curricular resources from across denominational lines. Granted, this is not an all-inclusive list, but ones that I am aware of that exist within the mainstream. That being said, remember, your choice of curriculum (or any other resource) is dependent on what your needs are. A curriculum will not “solve” all your problems and serve as a tool that can systematically help you achieve your goals. I chose to review the below resources as curricula because they typically involve a Leader’s Guide of some sort, as well as specific lesson plans or outlines for group usage.
Sharon Ely Pearson has been the Christian Formation Specialist for Church Publishing Incorporated / Morehouse Education Resources since November 2007. Prior to joining CPI, she was the Children’s Ministries & Christian Education Coordinator for the Episcopal Diocese of Connecticut for ten years. A graduate of Virginia Theological Seminary and a lifelong Episcopalian, she lives in Norwalk, Connecticut with her husband, John, of 36 years, Shadow the cat, and Chobe a year-old rescue black Lab.
She and John attend St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church in Wilton, CT where Sharon is the Senior Warden, a Lay Eucharistic Minister and teaches Godly Play in the Church School which is a joint venture with Wilton Presbyterian Church. They have two grown children, both teachers. In her spare time (what’s that?) she enjoys reading, cross-stitch, genealogy, gardening and travel. The Green Mile, To Kill a Mockingbird and The Shawshank Redemption continue to inspire theological reflection no matter how many times they are viewed.
The Center for Lifelong Learning at Columbia Theological Seminary offers vibrant learning opportunities in Christian education/formation for church educators teaching all ages and stages of life. Visit us HERE to learn more about our classes.