Monday, November 09, 2009

Resource Review - Rotation Workshop Sunday School

(This is part of a year long series of resource reviews I've been doing. 52 resources in 52 weeks. You can see all the reviews in one place here)

OVERALL - Workshop Rotation Sunday School website and resource center for a complete (and completely customizable) Sunday School curriculum.

WHAT'S IT ABOUT? Rotation workshop got its start in the Chicago area around 1990. The idea was to try and overcome the challenges of traditional Sunday school - student boredom, trouble recruiting and keeping teachers, expensive curricula that was often only partially used. Sound familiar? What grew out of it was a Sunday school curriculum that was designed to be interactive, teach students using all the major learning methodologies. Here's their description of the program:
Teach major Bible stories and concepts through kid-friendly multimedia workshops: an Art workshop, Drama, Music, Games, A-V, Puppets, Storytelling, Computers, and any other educational media you can get your hands on. Teach the same Bible story in all of the workshops for four or five weeks rotating the kids to a different workshop each week. And here comes the extremely teacher friendly part: Keep the same teacher in each workshop for all five weeks -teaching the same lesson week after week (with some age appropriate adjustments) to each new class coming in.

RESERVATIONS - The only real reservation I can find is I don't like their introductory flash presentations. I think they are GREAT ideas but they are executed a little poorly. The audio is uneven and clearly to my ears (which worked in radio for almost 20 years) these are not professional voice over announcers. The presentations suffer from stilted reads and uneven sound levels. Hey, it's the only complaint I could think of, lol!

RECOMMENDATION I know this system has been in use for several years at my home congregation and it seems to be a big success. The burden on the teachers is much smaller, they get to feel like they've got a real grasp of what they're doing and the time requests is much more manageable. The kids really seem to be getting into it too. Oh and did I mention - all of this stuff is free? You make it fit your congregation, your kids and the gifts of your teachers. It's a great resource.

This is really aimed a bit younger than most of what I normally work with but I regularly get recommendations for Sunday school curricula. This is one I can recommend with few reservations.

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