Spark: Elementary Religious Education (Grades 1-5)
Contact Person: Mrs. Frances T. Toups
Our elementary children program also known as "Spark," gathers for four (4) on-site Sunday Sessions during the school year and for a two-week morning (summer) program during the month of June. All elementary activities are mandatory for children who are enrolled. View a current Schedule of Classes here.
Sunday Sessions will be held from 9:15 - 10:45 a.m. on Sunday mornings. We encourage the children to attend a morning Mass with their family before or after the session.
- NOTE: Make-up packets (for student absences) may be found at the bottom of this page.
Each school year of religious education (2018-19, for example) for Grades 1-5 will end with a two-week, morning summer religious education program (TBA). (Reminder: All elementary children who are register are expected to attend the Sunday Sessions and the two-week summer program in their "current" (2018-19) grade level.) Because the summer program serves as the bulk of elementary religious education, there is no extra registration fee for the summer program.
- Letters are usually mailed (in March or April) to parents of students who are already enrolled in our elementary religious education program to request current t-shirt sizes for our two-week elementary summer religion program..
- We will need the help of many volunteers to put on the summer program for our elementary students. A list of volunteer duties and the volunteer form for the two-week summer elementary religious education program will be linked on our Events page from March (or April) through June. Student volunteers in Grades 6-12 are reminded that this is not a social event for 'tweens and teens. Our attention must be focused on our elementary students all morning, every morning! Our self-discipline will influence the children's self-discipline!
An Overview of Our Most Recent (June 2018) Two-Week Elementary (Grades 1-5) Summer Religious Education Program:
- Days 1-9: Our campers and volunteers began each morning in a large-group assembly for Opening Prayer and an introduction to a specific Bible story. Small same-grade-level crews combined to form large grade-level groups that traveled to five learning centers throughout the morning: a Bible Theater (featuring skits and games), crafts, outdoor exercise, Catechism lessons, and a Prayer Center focusing on traditional, sacred prayers. At the end of each morning, we returned to a large-group assembly finalè featuring a brief review of the day's topics and talks by Summer Seminarians Jonathan Harris and Luke Kirk. Parents and grandparents were welcome to join us for the daily finalé (11:30 a.m. until dismissal) on Days 1-9.
- Service Projects: During Week 1, the campers were encouraged to do chores at home to earn money so they could purchase and donate non-perishable goods for for the benefit of the Christian Service Center in Abbeville. In week 2, we encouraged our campers to do more chores at home to earn coins ("Pennies from Heaven") that could be donated and used to help the needy of our area. We collected a bit more than $400!
- Day 10: Shortly after checking roll and a quick review of important details, grade levels of "campers" began to move through a 5-station rotation: Adoration/Confessions in church, brief overall review activities for this year's program, a Safe Environment presentation, and two stations for indoor games/activities.
- While in church, all students experienced time in Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. Students in Grades 2-5 who had already received the Sacraments of Confession and Communion went back to Confession. If time permitted, volunteers were allowed to go to Confession as well.
- We appreciate the help of visiting priests who helped Father Metrejean hear Confessions from 8:10 a.m. to approximately 10:30 a.m.. We also thank several members of the Catholic Daughters who led several Rosaries while grade levels of children moved in/out of church throughout the morning on Day 10.
- The Indoor Games included old fashioned and modern indoor games (bean bag toss, football toss, ring toss, a few "board games" (Connect 4, Kerplunk, etc.), Twister, a donated Wii system featuring one of the popular (and age appropriate) dance cartridges, and an indoor game where our campers could race "flying birds" (plastic cups decorated as birds and propelled with air from balloons inflated by the campers).
- By 10:45, the rotation through five stations had ended and we all gathered in the church parish hall to prepare for Weekday Mass at 11:00. After making a handful of "reminder" announcements regarding Mass, all campers and most of our volunteers entered the church for Mass. Parents and grandparents were welcome to attend that Mass as well.
- Once again, the overall consensus is that everyone had fun and learned something new about our Catholic faith every day!
Make-up Packets for our 2019 Elementary Summer Religion Program will be linked to the dates below ASAP:
- Day 1: Monday, June 10
- Day 2: Tuesday, June 11
- Day 3: Wednesday, June 12
- Day 4: Thursday, June 13
- Day 5: Friday, June 14
- Day 6: Monday, June 17
- Day 7: Tuesday, June 18
- Day 8: Wednesday, June 19
- Day 9: Thursday, June 20
- Day 10: Friday, June 21
Make-up Packets for 2018-19 Sunday Sessions:
- NOTE: The October lesson plans for Grades 2-5 change from year to year as we review the Bible stories which were recently introduced during the two-week Elementary Summer Religion Program (in June 2018). The rest of the lesson plans may be tweaked slightly from year to year, but basically remain the same.
- Sunday Session 1-a on October 7: Grade 1 or Grade 2
- Sunday Session 1-b on October 14: Grade 3 or Grade 4 or Grade 5
- Sunday Session 2-a on December 9: Grade 1 or Grade 2
- Sunday Session 2-b on December 16: Grade 3 or Grade 4 or Grade 5
- Sunday Session 3-a on February 10: Grade 1 or Grade 2
- Sunday Session 3-b on February 17: Grade 3 or Grade 4 or Grade 5
- Sunday Session 4-a on March 17: Grade 1 or Grade 2
- Sunday Session 4-b on March 24: Grade 3 or Grade 4 or Grade 5