What is new in children’s curriculum (and why I can’t wait)

Post by Rachel Nussbaum Eby

Right now is quite an exciting time for the Shine: Living in God’s Light curriculum, forthcoming from MennoMedia and Brethren Press as the first new Anabaptist-oriented children’s curriculum in about seven years.

RunningKidsWSkyThe first quarter of the first year is at the printers. This coming weekend is the writers’ conference for the second year’s writers and editors. It will take place at Camp Mack, a church camp of Church of the Brethren, in Milford, Indiana. The writers’ conference is a chance for the group to meet, brainstorm and plan together and, most importantly, learn what makes the Shine approach to curriculum unique.

On the Shine website, samples of the teacher’s guides and student pieces have been added. If you haven’t looked at them, go to www.ShineCurriculum.com/curriculum/products/ and click on “View sample sessions.” Behind the scenes, a Shine store is being created for the website to make it possible for people to purchase Fall 2014 products early, including starter kits.

One starter kit will include one student piece, teacher’s guide and pack for Early Childhood (EC), Primary, Middler, and Junior Youth. Also, it will include one EC Music CD, one Year One Songbook and CD, and one copy of Shine On: A Story Bible. The other starter kit is for classrooms with multiple-age groups (kindergarten through grade 6). It contains one teacher’s guide and resource pack for Multiage, one Primary student piece, one Middler student piece, one Year One Songbook and CD, and one copy of Shine On: A Story Bible.

3D-BookCovers_ShineOn_lowRGB (2)Information about Shine has been developed into a special “rolling brochure” which, when two are completely unfolded, can also double as a beautiful full-color poster.

ShineStuff 088Email me at [email protected]  if you would like to receive one or two of these brochures free of charge. Information about Shine is also featured in this fun short video.

One of the unexpected things that I have enjoyed a lot about making this curriculum is the opportunity to see familiar Bible stories come alive in new ways. One session in quarter one is about the Ten Commandments. Each writer provided a variety of age-appropriate ways to understand and interact with the Ten Commandments. Just looking at one of the student pages from each level illustrates how the material has been developed for a specific age in a fresh way.

Early Childhood (ages 3–5)

Y1Q1_EC leaflets_10C (2)Primary (Kindergarten–Grade 3)

Y1Q1_PR_Leaflets_10C (2)Middler (Grade 3–Grade 6)

Y1Q1 MD_Glow_10CJunior Youth (Grade 6–Grade 8)

Y1Q1_JY_LED_10C (2)Sometimes it’s hard to be patient as I wait for writers’ content to become products I can hold in my hands. But then, as I look over printer proofs, I am reminded by the real life stories in our first quarter’s stories of Abraham, Jacob, Joseph, and Moses. I think of how they had years to wait before they saw “results.” Put into that perspective, waiting months—and now weeks—shouldn’t be that hard after all.

Learn more about why you should choose Shine as your Sunday school curriculum at www.ShineCurriculum.com/about/why-choose-shine/.

Let us know your thoughts, comments, questions!

Rachel Nussbaum Eby
Managing editor of Shine