Chatting, Cutting, Chatting, Cutting

My goodness, 4th graders can be chatty! 🙂

Last evening, as they worked on their Works of Mercy project, cutting and pasting pictures of the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy in the correct frames, my young apprentices were extremely chatty! Several of them were singing (or rapping) outloud to themselves as they worked while most of them chatted unceasingly with one another as they diligently performed surgery with their scissors and glue. It was a playful cacophany. They were very energized to be doing this activity and it seemed to help them get a handle on the various Works of Mercy.

I was honored to have a couple of visitors drop in as the kids were working on this. Arlene, our DRE, popped in accompanied by a friend and colleague, Cathy Walz, the Vicariate V Catechetical Ministry Coordinator for the Office for Catechesis and Youth Ministry in the Archdiocese of Chicago. Cathy asked the kids what they were working on and they responded intelligently (thank goodness) that they were learning about the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy.  I asked the kids to tell Cathy about the 2 brief video clips we watched – one that depicted someone showing NO MERCY and another one depicting someone showing MERCY to others. Again, I was pleased that volunteers responded intelligently, describing the Ebeneezer Scrooge clip as showing NO MERCY and the Mother Theresa clip as an example of showing mercy. Thanks for visiting, Cathy!

In all, the class went pretty well although not having my aid with me last night threw me off balance a little so at times I felt a bit disjointed. I DO think, however, that they now know what the word MERCY means and can recognize the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy. I think! 🙂

About Joe Paprocki 2739 Articles
Joe Paprocki, DMin, is National Consultant for Faith Formation at Loyola Press, where, in addition to his traveling/speaking responsibilities, he works on the development team for faith formation curriculum resources including Finding God: Our Response to God’s Gifts and God’s Gift: Reconciliation and Eucharist. Joe has more than 35 years of experience in ministry and has presented keynotes, presentations, and workshops in more than 100 dioceses in North America. Joe is a frequent presenter at national conferences including the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, the Mid-Atlantic Congress, and the National Conference for Catechetical Leadership. He is the author of numerous books, including the best seller The Catechist’s Toolbox, A Church on the Move, Under the Influence of Jesus, and Called to Be Catholic—a bilingual, foundational supplemental program that helps young people know their faith and grow in their relationship with God. Joe is also the series editor for the Effective Catechetical Leader and blogs about his experiences in faith formation at

6 Comments on Chatting, Cutting, Chatting, Cutting

  1. That wingclips website is REALLY COOLl! I think I will incorporate the two above clips in my lesson when I teach the corporal acts of mercy. I did not know such a site existed. I will make it a favorite on my computer so I can refer back to it when looking for ideas for my class. It sounds like you have a great group of 4th graders!

    • Josie, Wingclips is a good resource to keep in mind and can come in very handy from time to time. Yes, my 4th graders are a really good group this year!

  2. I am co-catechist Gr. 2, this my 2nd. yr. at St.Sebastian Catholic Church. Bieing in the catechism ministry, is an overwhelming joy. With the kids in catechism, I can feel the healing power of God. they are smart, can easily catch up with the lessons. And their innocence radiates to me, with the feeling that we as catechists are also little children in the eyes of God. It is an awesome feeling, for us catechists to be able to feel the excitement of the kids with the outpouring of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. I am a happy person, and there is no other joy that could fill up with the joys of being a catechist and my joy is complete. It gives me strength to climb the mountains of life.

  3. I am a catechist for first graders in North Wales, PA. I wanted to thank Joe for all his ideas at last night’s “Catechist Night Out ” seminar. It was great hearing about your personal experiences with children. I attended some of your webinars and have been trying many new things this year. After hearing you speak, I will definitely keep trying the reflective prayer with my class. Thank you again for your inspiration and sharing your personal stories.

    • Thanks Lucretia, I had a wonderful evening in Bucks County and was inspired to see so many enthusiastic catechists gather to learn more about how we can be more effective!

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