Faith Tweets and Bible Trivia to Teach Salvation History

Mary Dillman has served as a catechist for 13 years at St. Magdalen de Pazzi Church, in Flemington, NJ (Diocese of Metuchen). The parish is a large one with more than 3,000 families. Mary teaches sixth-grade religious education and has served as the lead instructional designer for the Salvation History curriculum the parish uses for sixth-grade youth. Here she shares several activities that worked best in her faith-formation classes this past year, as part of […]

Dear 7th Grade Catechist…

Last night, we celebrated the Eucharist to bring closure to this catechetical year at St. Cajetan. The pastor, Fr. Frank, did a wonderful job of making it a celebration of growth and thanksgiving for many blessings…he is so good at speaking to the children! It occurred to me that I might be able to help the 7th grade catechist who will “inherit” my class next year, by telling him or her what my students learned […]

YOU Get a Bowl! YOU Get a Bowl! YOU Get a Bowl!

I just had to share one of those moments as a catechist that just make you laugh! Last night, for the last half hour of class, we had a little film-fest as a treat for the kids on their last night. With the DRE’s permission, we brought some popcorn for them to enjoy. Joanne employed some of the kids to help her distribute the goodies and one young man was in charge of distributing the […]

Survey Results In

Last evening, I surveyed my students (8 of 9 were present), asking them to indicate which activities we did this year were their most or least favorite. I compiled a list of 20 activities we did throughout the year and asked them to rate each one on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being “least favorite” and 10 being “most favorite. First, I am happy to report that NOT ONE activity of the […]

One Last Session!

It’s hard to believe, but this Tuesday is the last session I have with my 6th graders! Where did the year go? It has been a wonderful year and I am so grateful to these 9th sixth graders for being such a great class of kids and to my wife Joanne for being the best aide ever! Our official last class is next week when we take the kids to church for Mass so this […]

A Church of Mercy – In Action

I’m sure you’ve noticed that we at Loyola Press have been talking a lot about Pope Francis’s exciting new book, The Church of Mercy.As our publisher, Fr. Paul Campbell, S.J. reminds everyone, “Remember, Loyola Press is a not-for-profit Jesuit ministry, so this isn’t about lining our own pockets with gold but about getting the Pope’s joyful message of God’s love and mercy to as many as possible.” Heck, I was talking about MERCY here on […]

This is MY Story!

I was delighted to discover last evening that my 6th graders had retained a great deal of what we covered during the year! In essence, I really emphasized 3 main topics this year: Old Testament stories, the Ten Commandments, and the Sacraments. Last night, we did a review of the Old Testament stories and it went very nicely. Here’s a pic that sets the stage: On the board is the theme/big idea for the session […]

Tonight’s Session: What’s Your Story? “This is MY Story!”

This evening is the last chance I have this year to review with my 6th graders so I’m going to make the most of it! Here’s my plan: Big Idea: What’s Your Story? (This is MY Story!) Preliminaries (15 mins) Collect permission forms for Ronald McDonald House Mercy Experience Go over details for the upcoming Mercy Experience Opening procession and prayer ritual Engage (20 mins) Do “What’s Your Story?” ice breaker in which you ask questions […]

Navigating the Old Testament

Our session this past Tuesday went very well. The focus of the class was to review the stories that we learned from the Old Testament this year and to locate them in the Bible. We began by inviting each student to recall the name of someone we learned about in the Old Testament this year. Every student recalled someone and we had a good list of names on the board: Adam and Eve, Cain and […]

It’s Time to Begin Reviewing!

It’s hard to believe but it is that time of the year when I begin to review what we’ve learned this year! In other words, I will not be teaching any new material for the remainder of this year! We will review all of our Old Testament stories tomorrow, using my Bible Bookmarks to guide us in locating them in the Bible. Here is the worksheet we will be using. Please note: this is based […]

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