Wednesday, September 2, 2020

New Editable & Shareable Resources for the Catholic Classroom

Hello! I hope you are hanging in there with whatever back-to-school looks like in your neck of the woods. ;)

For school, I am back in person in the classroom while also teaching some students virtually. At my parish, we are still finalizing plans but are looking at creating at-home whole family catechesis resources (and I'll certainly share what we end up making!).

I've heard so much feedback from many of you across both school and parish work how helpful it has been to have editable, shareable resources, allowing you to tailor them to the needs of your students and families and send over a digital platform. I shared six different sets of Google Slides with varying topics in this post in May, and I'm back today with a few more to add to the collection. 

The Details:

-Topics today include the Sacred Heart of Jesus, American Saints, and prep for the Mass

-Target age for the Sacred Heart and American Saints is junior high, but of course can be modified to go up or down. These two are actual projects/assignments that could be used for an individual study/grade. These could be taught in the classroom, assigned remotely, or used as a back up set of plans if you need a sub.

-The Mass reflection slides have choices that are intended to span across grade levels. This is a resource especially for those that might be watching the Mass via a livestream or in unusual circumstances to try and provide reverence before, during, and after the Holy Mass.

-These assignments were created in Google Slides with the intention of being assigned in Google Classroom. You can certainly download them in PowerPoint and send them through email, or whatever tool you are using to communicate with your students.

-They are totally editable. You just have to make a copy or download before making any changes. Delete, change, add-- make them work for your kids.

-The Sacred Heart and American Saints projects are multi day assignments- otherwise they would be way too long! You can use them multi day, split them up, or just delete slides you find less important to create a shorter task

***All of the resources needed for the tasks are readily available- like public websites or docs I've created. If you share the slides with your students, make sure that they can access all of the links as well. For example, if you have a closed Google Domain (many school are) they will not be able to open any of the Google docs I have linked because I am outside of their domain. You will have to make a copy, save in your own Google Drive, and link. (Unfortunately, I get a lot of student access requests to docs shared by their teachers, but I can't even email them back because of domain permissions. It breaks my teacher heart to not be able to help them- so if you are in a closed Google Domain, keep that in mind!)***

Mass Reflection Slides:

These slides were designed to help teachers maintain an atmosphere of reverence before and after Mass even if circumstances are out of the ordinary- like watching a livestream or attending Mass in a new location. For example, right now my class participates in school Mass every Friday, but alternate weeks we are in the church and in my classroom watching a livestream. Immediately following, we are able to receive Holy Communion, but as you can imagine, it is a challenge to create an environment fitting of the Sacrament in a regular old classroom. 

To help, I've been leaving the lights off to keep the focus on the smart board, encouraging the kids to fully participate with responses and postures, and also using these slides before and after Mass, as well as for a time of thanksgiving after receiving Communion. The were created with our whole school in mind, so there are lots of options and needed variety for different grade levels or amounts of time available.

Even after we move past the strange circumstances of Mass at present, I am planning on continuing to use these to set the tone before we walk over to the church and after as well if time is available. It's nice to be doing something differently right now that actually will be fruitful even under more normal circumstances! :) These also could totally be used at home or inspiration for prayers or songs in the car on the way to and from Mass as a family.

Click here to open the Mass Reflection Slides:


America the Beautiful Saint Study:

This study is based on the At-Home VBS I shared earlier this summer, but turned into a junior high level research project with a choice based culminating activity. It is a self led five day project where the students chose four Saints (one each day) to research and on the final day create a project synthesizes some of their new knowledge. In my classroom, I'm supplementing with some short videos, but those are a little harder to share in this format so you can add your own if you think that would be of help. ;) You could adapt this for younger students by choosing which Saints to study as a class and then working together to fill out the biography forms. You could also stretch to last more days by adding more Saints or expanding the final project.

Click here to open the American Saint study:



Sacred Heart of Jesus Study:

This study is based on another At-Home VBS I shared earlier this summer, but turned into a junior high level research project with a choice based culminating activity. It is a self led five day project where the students study different aspects of the Sacred Heart (symbolism, Saints with devotion to, 12 Promises, Scripture Study) and on the final day create a project synthesizes some of their new knowledge. This one does include embedded videos for each day. You could certainly stretch this by adding additional days of Lectio Divina or Saint study (those days have multiple choices) or expanding the requirements for the final project.

Click here to open the Sacred Heart study:


Know of my prayers for all of you, your families, students, parishes, and schools! I was already in the habit of praying for my blog readers daily, but it seems to be even more important now. Don't hesitate to reach out if there is something I can be doing or sharing that might help all of us!

12 comments:

  1. I seriously love your stuff. I use it ALL.THE.TIME. Thank you so much and especially for being so generous in sharing it with all of us.

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  2. Thank you, Katie, for sharing your incredibly amazing work! God bless you!

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  3. Thanks for your great resources!

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  4. Thank you so much! These are great resources. You are very generous with your talents!

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  5. You are my hero! Thank you for your generous heart, your creative spirit, and your incredible brain!

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  6. I've never responded (ever) on a comment board, but I have to thank you for these amazing lesson. You are a true gift!!

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  7. Hi Katie, love, love love all the work and authentic witnessing you do in your vocation as an educator, praise God for your generosity with your gifts and talents! For the Neighbours to the North aka Canadian friends there's resources for Canadian saints and blessed on the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops website https://www.cccb.ca/the-catholic-church-in-canada/saints-blesseds-canada/ Thanks again for the inspiration Katie, blessings and safety to you and your class!

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    1. Oh, thanks for that link! That activity would be totally adaptable just by changing the list at the beginning!

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  8. Thank you, Katie. While we are starting out giving parents resources, I'm optimistic that we may be able to cone together for small group activities in the near future. This will mean many days in a row of the same material to get everyone in. We'll see.

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  9. Thank you so much! Can't wait to see what you put out for whole family faith formation resources!

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  10. Thank you so much for sharing all this wonderful activities! You are a person with a beautiful gift from God! God Bless you always.

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