For children aged 3-11 we run a morning of games, craft, singing, prayer and time exploring the Bible. Instead of “Sunday School”, we call it “KidsZone” and the aim of it is to enable children to BE church AS children, without all the restrictions and limitations that would be put on them if we expected them to do church like grown-ups do. So KidsZone starts with a time of reflection/prayer, then some time exploring a particular Bible story or passage in smaller, age-appropriate groups, then a big celebration time at the end with singing, dancing, and a memory verse challenge! KidsZone is based on a teaching series produced by Scripture Union, called “Light”. Different age-groups do different activities, all exploring the same story/passage. The age-groups are: Stepping Stones (3-5), Splash (5-8), and Xstream (8-11).
For a sneak preview of some of the songs that we sing together in KidsZone, have a look at this YouTube playlist.
For young people in school year 7-9, there is group that meets together for about an hour of the main service. This group is called YP (Young People, Youth with a Purpose, Yellow Platypuses…you decide!) This group focuses more on community and discussion, exploring what the Bible tells us about a host of issues and themes relevant to this age-group! The group is led by Samuel Hughes, the church’s Student Youthworker.
The older teenagers (school yr 10-13) have their own group too. This is more of a peer-led group, with a slightly more “sophisticated” feel – meeting in the youth lounge with filter coffee, tea, and biscuits. Each week the group take it in turns to lead, supported by the group’s leaders. It’s all about encouraging each other to become more like Jesus, taking what He said seriously, and what He did as a template for life. Mettle is overseen by Anna Hawkins and Stuart Brenchley, and the weekly sessions are based on YFC‘s “Mettle” programme. This age-group also meet up mid-week for a youth “homegroup”. To check what’s going on with the “Mettle” youthgroup, check out the diary of youth events/activities here.