Children and Youth

Now Hiring!

Are you a baby whisperer, or do you know someone who enjoys working with infants and toddlers? We are looking to hire a part-time nursery caregiver to work on Sunday mornings and occasional evening and weekend events. See the job description here and contact Yvonne Wilken at yvonne@firstuniversalist.org if interested.

FFRE Volunteers

Do you have kids in our RE program or an interest in the formation of young Unitarian Universalists? Throughout the year, our Religious Education ministry continues to look for all types of volunteers. We thank all of our volunteers for completing a background check. Contact our Director of Faith Formation and Religious Education, Yvonne Wilken, for more information.

Come Play with Us! Nursery Team Sign Up.


Faith Formation and Religious Education (FFRE)
Programming for Children and Youth

We offer programming for all ages Sunday at 10:00 a.m. during the worship service at Hamilton Middle School.

To download our 2017-2018 Program Brochure, click here.

Click to expand a description of each age group.

Nursery & Preschool

In the nursery and preschool room, our priority is to ensure that children feel safe and secure. Trained and loving staff and volunteer caregivers ensure consistent and quality care. We have a variety of toys and books for the ages served, and we offer activities based on a UUA curriculum for children starting around 3.5 years old or any toddler who will engage and enjoy the activities.

The nursery opens at 9:45 on Sunday mornings – and 15 minutes before services and classes/events with childcare provided. Please pick up your child(ren) promptly following programming or services, as childcare ends 15 minutes after services/events.

Learn more about our childcare and preschool program.

K-3rd Grade: Soul Matters

Children start each Sunday in the service with their families. After about 15 minutes of shared worship, teachers lead their classes out of the auditorium. After the service, adults meet their children in the Gym.

We are welcoming back Soul Matters as our curriculum for the year. Our whole church will once again be engaged in a national conversation with other UU congregations around the monthly worship themes outlined in Soul Matters. Among hundreds of congregations across North America signed up for the program, other Colorado congregations committed include: Jefferson Unitarian, Namaqua UU Congregation, Columbine UU Church, High Plains Church, Boulder Valley UU Fellowship, UU Church of Boulder,Foothills Unitarian Church, and UU Church of Greeley.

Not only do we plan to explore these themes in our worship, we are bringing them into our children’s classroom. Each month, Soul Matters offers children’s RE lessons related to the theme. What this means is that there will be a connection between what our children are getting each Sunday with what our adults are getting in worship and with what our children and their peers around the state and nation are getting.
This is exactly why this curriculum was chosen: it works for multi-age groups and promotes family discussion at home. Breakout groups will be dependent on volunteer teaching teams.
Each Sunday will begin with the children attending service in the Sanctuary with their families.  For the first 15 minutes we worship together, sharing the lighting of the chalice, readings, and singing “Spirit of Life” together. A wisdom story or wisdom homily is shared to explore the monthly worship theme. Then, children go to their classrooms while the congregation sings them a blessing. They will then be sung off to class where they will further explore the theme and lesson of the day through age appropriate stories and activities.

Themes for the year include Courage, Abundance, Hope, Intention, Perseverance, Balance, Emergence, Creativity, and Blessing.We look forward to seeing your children in class!

Learn more about our programming for elementary school-aged children.

4th Grade: Bibleodeon

4th grade students will be using the Bibleodeon curriculum to learn about key stories and ideas in the Bible. This class will give students a basic understanding of the Bible and help them develop their critical thinking skills so that they are able to engage in conversation about the Bible, it’s stories, themes, and ideas.

Learn more about Bibleodeon.

5-6th Grade: Building Bridges

One of the Sources of Unitarian Universalism is looking at world religions as a source of ethical and spiritual wisdom. Exploring different religions is a hallmark in Unitarian Universalist faith formation. We do that with our 5th and 6th Grades through the “Tapestry of Faith” curriculum. This year we are exploring the “Building Bridges” components of Tapestry of Faith. Our structure is to offer younger youth a chance to engage with their own discovery of UU faith while learning about and appreciating the wisdom from other faith traditions and history. Activities focus on learning about the differences and similarities of our faith neighbors. Judaism, Islam, Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, Native American, and other religions, are explored within the context of our own UU faith and history.

Learn more about programming for youth in Middle School.

7-8th Grade: Coming of Age

The Coming of Age (CoA) program is designed to honor the transition between childhood and youth. This vibrant class is a transformative experience that includes learning, growing, ritual, and celebration. Our goals are to:

  1. Provide youth with the tools to begin intentionally shaping their own spiritual lives
  2. Encourage youth to create their own “empowering stories”
  3. Create a space and time for deep authentic relationships among youth, mentors, and the congregation

The culmination of the class is a two night Vision Quest Retreat where they youth spend quiet time (away from electronics) to explore their own beliefs. These beliefs are then turned into Belief Statements or Credos which are shared with the congregation in the CoA Service in which they are: welcomed into the congregation as youth, bridged into the YRUU youth group, and eligible for membership. It is an experience that youth and parents alike rave about.

To get the most out of the class, consistent weekly participation is strongly encouraged. The youth need to be able to create trusting relationships with their advisors, mentors, and fellow classmates.

Learn more about our programming or contact Youth Mentor Claire Reifert: claire@firstuniversalist.org.

Our Whole Lives

In the 2017-2018 church year, we are offering Our Whole Lives (OWL) sexuality education for youth in 8th and 9th Grades.

Our Whole Lives: Sexuality and Your Life is a comprehensive twenty-seven-session sexuality education course produced by the UUA and the United Church of Christ, and offered in a majority of UU churches nationwide. The course is designed to facilitate: 1) an understanding of the dynamics of sexuality in their lives, 2) the ability to communicate about sexual concerns and issues with parents and peers, 3) communication skills essential for emotional intimacy, and 4) building strong foundations for making healthy, safe, and responsible decisions about sexuality and relational behavior. Classes are led by four comprehensively trained OWL teachers, female and male, in a safe environment in which to explore sensitive issues with honesty and integrity.

Parents of teens must attend an orientation session so that they can give informed consent if their teenager chooses to participate in the course. To learn more, contact Youth Mentor Claire Seifert: claire@firstuniversalist.org.

High School: YRUU

YRUU (Young Religious Unitarian Universalists) is composed of youth and adult advisors. Through youth-adult partnership, this community decides, schedules and plans their events and activities based on community bonding, social justice, spirituality, and connections across generations. Our respect of each other and our covenant provides all of our youth with a safe place to share thoughts and feelings, explore, learn, and build life-long friendships.

On Sundays at 10:00 a.m., our youthful community explores the monthly worship themes of the larger congregation. Using a variety of curriculum and resources, all are encouraged to examine and share their views in an atmosphere of openness, honesty, tolerance, understanding, and acceptance of diversity. Activities, games and hands-on experiences also help build community within and reaching out into the wider world.

Learn more about YRUU programming and youth conferences.


PROGRAM LINKS AND RESOURCES

FFRE Registration Form 2017-2018

Please complete a registration form to get on our FFRE Families Newsletter email list.