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Exploring Hearts Alive: The Opening Elements (Part 1)

June 21, 2022

Hearts Alive Children's Curriculum

Exploring Hearts Alive:  The Opening Elements (Part 1)

By Christine O'Brien

Over the next four weeks, we will be sharing an inside look at the different elements that make up our Hearts Alive Sunday School and Children’s Church curriculum. To kick off part one of this series, we will look at the opening pages of a Hearts Alive lesson. The opening pages of every lesson are the same, whether for Children’s Church or Sunday School.

These beginning elements will help leaders get ready to bring young hearts alive to Jesus. Our curriculum gives teams everything they need, step-by-step, to equip successful Sunday School or Children’s Church leaders.

The first page of every lesson gives the theme. Leaders will find the title, the Bible passage, and three simple helps.

The first help is the big idea. It answers the question: what’s the big idea we want children to take away? 

The second help is the memory verse—the part of God’s Word that children can hide in their hearts to help the lesson stick. Some lessons include an activity to help teach the memory verse. All the lessons include the memory verse on the “take home page” for children to learn at home.

The third help is the lesson overview. It takes the big idea and expands it, giving a broader picture of what the lesson aims to teach young hearts.

These three helps—the big idea, the memory verse, and the lesson overview are the “what” of the lesson—what it’s all about.

The “how” of the lesson is the lesson chart—how leaders will teach the lesson. It breaks down class time into parts—such as the welcome activity, worship time, the lesson itself, a game or craft. Each part tells the approximate time it will take, the supplies needed, and what to prepare ahead of time.

Next, let’s discover the “why.” We call this section the Bible Background. The good news is, leaders, or whomever is teaching the lesson, do not have to be experts on the Bible in order to teach the Hearts Alive lessons effectively. The Bible Background gives all they need to know about the day’s passage. It explains why the lesson they’re teaching is important—how it is rooted in the Scriptures, in both the Old and New Testaments and, most importantly, how it relates to the Gospel message —that’s the true “heart” of every Hearts Alive lesson—the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

In part two of this 4-part blog series, we’ll look at the concluding pages of every Hearts Alive lesson—the closing elements. Just like the opening elements, the closing elements are also the same for every lesson, whether Children’s Church or Sunday School!


Related Resource:

Hearts Alive Children's Curriculum

Hearts Alive Sunday School and Children's Church provide liturgical congregations a highly-anticipated children’s curriculum that combines captivating content, lectionary alignment, and Gospel focus for children ages 3-12. For those seeking to engage children in a fun, age-appropriate application to the Revised Common Lectionary, Hearts Alive is a three-year course of study to give children a strong overview of the story of salvation and how it ties to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Hearts Alive supports and elevates liturgical traditions and the church calendar while using clear, contemporary learning techniques to present the Word of God. Learn more in our online community.

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