Resources for Youth and Children Layworkers
In light of government instruction to socially distance ourselves from others, and in conjunction with the Methodist Church's decision to suspend all Sunday worship services, face to face interaction with out children, young people, young adults and families within our churches will also need to temporarily end. However, this does not mean that we stop connecting with those people, rather we need to connect is a different way, using new resources and channels.
With that in mind, Brian Smith, our Youth and Children's Coordinator, has put together a wide range of resources and links to various websites that will be useful to you during this time.You can find these listed below. Resources and links are also available as a downloadable PDF now updated with YouTube videos and resources).
(Please note that we are not responsible for the content of any external websites).
Bible Study Resources
The New Testament: Understanding the Biblical Narrative in 28 Short Videos - Landon MacDonald
Join Pastor Landon on this exploration of the Bible, book by book and help your young people to grow an understanding of 'what each book is and how it connects to the overall story.'
Here you will find seven children's Bible lessons that use the familiarlity and fun of comic heroes along with truths from God's Word, to help children learn how they can stand firm and be a hero for God.
What is anti-racism and how can youth leaders open up this conversation in their work with young people? Natalie Evans, co-founder of the social media platform @everydayracism_, draws on her experience.
This website is designed to bring together relevant advice, guidance, support and tools for youth workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. You will be able to find resources to help you and young people:
Each of these areas has downloadable resources and links to other useful sites to support youth workers or use with young people.
Please note that this site is being continually updated.
This special section of the Youthscape website has been created as a place for the youth ministry tribe to come together - a place to share a few ideas and resources, lots of your stories and signpost you to helpful content from all over the youth work world. Please note that this page is being continually updated.
yfc.co.uk/together (Youth for Christ)
This website provides free resources and tutorials designed to show Jesus in a way that is relevant to every young person in Britain including:
This website provides 'weekly resources to enrich worship and learning all week every week'. Visit the website here.
Creating Space for God at Home - create a space for God is a spiritual and mindful routine each day with your family unit
Connecting with God, Reassuring Children and Wellbeing - connecting with God and creating Space and time in the home
Online and Film Resources - uplifting videos that engage across age and community
General / additional resources - for equipping and empowering families for Faith Practices at Home Gathering moments in an intentional way
The Methodist Church in Britain's Children, Youth and Families team has developed a brand new journalling resource, A Holy Week Journey for young people, as well as suggested activities for children and families to do together over each of the eight days.
You will be able to use specially created resources from the Faith and Order Committee including The Way of the Cross, based around the stations of the cross and downloadable for use at home. A service of light and darkness adapted for home use has been uploaded, along with versions of the Love Feast for Maundy Thursday and Easter Day and a resource for spiritual communion. To access these resources please click here.
Short acts of worship at a time of church closure to help you spend a few moments with God, knowing that other people are sharing this act of worship with you.
Home Learning and Online Safety
As a means to support parents during the coronavirus, Thinkuknow has created home activity packs with simple 15 minute activities that can be done with children to support their online safety. The packs are released fortnightly and suitable from early years to 14+. Visit the website for more information and to access the resources.
This manual was created by Brian Smith to provide an opportunity for home study and guided learning to equip those wishing to mentor children and young people. You can access the manual here.
Guidance from Thinkyouknow (educational arm of the Child Exploitation and Online Protecion Agency (CEOP)
At a time when schools are closed, more children and young people will be going online. Below if guidance about keeping your child / young person safe online whilst they are off school.
Educational sites for families whilst children and young people are off school:
Nooma Series by Rob Bell (YouTube)
'Wherever he went, whatever he did, Jesus started discussions about what matters most, because for Jesus, God is always inviting us to open our eyes and join in. NOOMA is an invitation to search, question, and join the discussion.
Not A Fan by Kyle Idleman (YouTube)
'He was looking for followers. Not just any follower though, but a... COMPLETELY. COMMITTED. FOLLOWER. How would things change if you lived as Jesus lived, and loved the way He loved? Maybe you're ready to join the hundreds of people who have stepped across a line and said: I am not a fan.'
Skills in Theological Reflection from Jessica Dalton at the Learning Network
Here are a few resources to aid our own theological reflection, and that of the folk we work with during our time of social distancing.
This page, from Durham University, has a wealth of videos discussing the importance of theological reflection, what is is and how to do it, produced as part of their common awards scheme. The contributions are from leading specialists and the page also has some suggestions for further reading, if that's your thing.
After Sunday is a website full of resources for questioning and reflection. It has a real focus on enabling lay vocation for theology and embedding it in every day life.
I also recommend Living the Questions, for those looking for a DVD resource for individual or group study during this period.
I have prepared a resource for theological reflection based on the Methodist Quadrilateral. These are as follows:
Blob Guide to Social Distancing
These images are a collection of immediate visual responses to the unfolding events of the dramatic pandemic sweeping our world. COVID19 has caused the closure of businesses, the end of international holidaying, the suspension of normal schooling, and taken the lives of hundreds of thousands around the world. As the battle for lives is being fought in hospitals throughout the world, researchers desperately seek a vaccine to prevent further spread and protect the entire human race from this current contagion taking the lives of millions.
Each of the illustrations has been developed to stimulate conversation on the areas which affect most of the population. It doesn't get too specific about treatments, theories of origin, finances and many more important issues. Each image is a starting point for a small group or large group conversation. Opposite the black and white illustration, each sheet has several general questions relating to the image that could be used. These are starting questions, and may need adapting for the age group that you are working with. The black and white image is suitable for photocopying and distributing to those who you are working with. With it being on white paper, the image is easier to annotate or colour in.
The scientific understanding on this issue is constantly improving which is why this book wouldn’t purport to be a scientific summary of the issues so far. What this book is focusing upon is the emotional reaction to the situation. For many, their mental and emotional health has been turned upside down by anxiety about catching the virus, and depression about not being able to see their friends and family.
As in most big issues, the need to talk in an open environment is important, even once we finally leave the Lockdown phase. We hope that these images will enable both children and adults to share their feelings and to grow in their understanding of how fear, as well as the virus itself, can cause a widespread problem. Ian and Pip