My Top Ten Favorite Lessons: #10


It’s been a fun trip down memory lane this summer as I’ve recounted and shared ten of my favorite lessons from my experiences of teaching fourth, sixth, and eighth grade religious education over the last decade. Last but not least is a lesson I did several years in a row when teaching eighth grade; it is actually a string of lessons on Church history. This lesson was pretty labor-intensive, involving a PowerPoint presentation that I put together on Church history, some handouts for the students to follow along with and complete while viewing the presentation, and finally a huge timeline that the young people worked on after the slideshow to arrange events from our Church history in chronological order.

Now, while I enjoy history, I recognize that it is not the favorite subject of many young people. For this reason, I felt it was necessary to develop some tools that would engage them in active learning. The results were very successful as the young people remained engaged and focused over the course of several lessons on Church history, with a focus on how the same Holy Spirit that descended upon the Apostles on Pentecost and has guided the Church throughout history will be with them as they celebrate Confirmation.

Here is the lesson: A Light Shines in the Darkness: Church History Timeline.

About Joe Paprocki 2742 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

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