The Unitarian Church of Harrisburg offers children's religious exploration programming each Sunday morning at both campuses. Please try to arrive about 15 minutes before the service. Greeters will welcome you and someone will help you and your children find the appropriate rooms. Arriving a bit early allows time to get comfortable, meet the leaders or child care providers, and fill out a visitor registration form. Please let the supervising adult know of any special needs or allergies to best provide a positive experience for your child.
We encourage you to go with your children to their sessions to help them find their way and get comfortable. If you do not arrive early, just go with the rest of the children and leaders, let them know you are new, and they will help you find your children's rooms. You are welcome to stay in the session or activity with your child if that is more comfortable for you.
Care for infants and toddlers is integrated into our general children's programming. With dedicated adult supervision, this family-style structure allows the younger children to interact and build relationships with older children and youth. It is important that children are safe and well cared for and that their parents are comfortable. Families are encouraged to take the time to help make their children comfortable and inform the child care providers about any anticipated needs. Two child-care providers from the congregation engage and guide the children. Parents and caregivers are welcome to sit in any time, and after 1 year, can volunteer and help provide child care for others!
Nursery care is available from 15 minutes before to 15 minutes after the worship service.
RE Children Program Overview
All children (PreK-8th) & youth (9-12th) begin their Sunday morning experience in the sanctuary in worship service with their families. Most Sundays, they are "sung out" to their classes after the Message for All Ages (about 15 minutes or so into the regular worship service.)
Religious Exploration classes and activities last 15 minutes after the worship service. Children in 4th grade or younger must be picked up in their classrooms by their parents/guardians.
After their third visit, families must complete the UCH RE registration form. This helps our Director of Religious Exploration monitor attendance, communicate with families, and tailor activities for their children & youth.
Monthly programming includes:
- Two weeks of programmed curriculum: This year's focus is UU Identity through Signs of Our Faith, tailored to younger and older interests and abilities.
- One week of ActionSpace: A current-events social justice themed program based on learning and activities. For example, in September we learned about immigration and detention centers - kids from 4 to 16 drew posters for a vigil at the Berks County Detention Center held later that day, tried singing "This Little Light of Mine" in Spanish, created egg shakers for vigil participants, and discussed the fairness and equity of detaining refugees.
- One-to-two weeks of MakerSpace: An opportunity for kids to experience the 7 UU Principles and practice UU values and fellowship around self-directed activities. Stations include: CrafterSpace, TinkerSpace, BakerSpace, GardenerSpace, BuilderSpace, and MoverSpace.
Special programming includes:
- 5&6th graders - Our Whole Lives (OWL) - Winter 2018 (offered biannually)
- 7th&8th graders - Coming Of Age - Winter/Spring 2018 (offered biannually)