Sunday Schools are held at the respective churches or particular Sunday School buildings of churches on every Sunday. Some churches have their Sunday Schools before the morning Holy Qurbana service, some of them hold it after the service. Sunday School classes are held on Fridays in parishes of the Arabian Gulf region.

The classes begin by a common worship led by the students and teachers, followed by a singing session and interactive games.  The students then disperse for classes, which is inside one hour.

Every student is provided with an interactive workbook, which focuses on "Transformation through the Word". Teachers Hand book are provided to the teachers for effective teaching.

Annual Competitions are also held in the Sunday Schools. Children present their God given talents like Singing, Memorizing Verses, Elocution, Essay Writing, Painting etc, for the glory of God. Prizes are also given to all students participating in these competions.

Every Sunday School has a Headmaster/ Headmistress, who will oversee and lead the Sunday School activity of that parish.  Regular programs will be charted out by the Headmaster/ Headmistress. The Vicar of the respective parish is the President of the Sunday School(s).

Each Sunday School will be incorporated to a Center, containing different other Sunday Schools of the region. There is a Center President, Secretary and office bearers who will be in charge of the Center activities. There will be frequent Center Meetings which helps teachers and students alike, for better functioning and witness. Cluster meetings are also held, where teachers of a particular vakup form groups and discuss the lessons for the month.

Transform through the WORD of GOD

The context of the curriculum is the church. The participants in the learning process are primarily baptized members of the church. The participants are generally born, brought up and nurtured in a Christian family, where they are confronted by Reality/God through the lives and practices of the elders. Since the learners are nurtured in a Christian environment, it is assumed that they have some familiarity with scripture passages, liturgy and history of the Mar Thoma church.

This curriculum is designed to help our children to confront the Triune God personally, through the help of the Holy Spirit -who is our teacher, guide and comforter - to be transformed. Hence the logic of the lesson plan adopts the plan of the previous curriculum with some logical amendments. The logic is transformational in nature. The method adopted is that of self-discovery through the intervention of the Holy Spirit.

The contemporary world view of our children seems to be of monocultural in nature but the post-modern milieu functions as pluralistic and multi-cultural. The technological advances enable our children to travel around the world while being in their homes. They are attracted to colours, fast pace and new gadgets.  Therefore it is our task to update our curriculum and to cater to the children of the 21st century. The goal of this curriculum is to being out the latent talents and possibilities within the child through the indwelling of the Spirit of God.

The curriculum of the Mar Thoma Sunday School Samajam is;

  • Christo-centric
  • Bible based
  • Liturgically focused (involving faith & practices of the church)
  • Historically rooted,
  • seeking to prepare a generation to build strong Christian families who are socially and environmentally responsible to the WORD of GOD.

This curriculum is a transformational curriculum. Transformation implies that teachers and students share knowledge of the WORD in the hope that both will be transformed through the power of the Holy Spirit. Using these curriculum materials it is hoped that the participants will experience transformation at a personal, social, cultural and organism levels as a result of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

This curriculum recognizes the Holy Spirit as the Teacher, and views the human teacher as the assistant of the Holy Spirit. The curriculum is designed to be delivered in the pattern of the teaching of the Holy Spirit, especially as evidenced in the teaching ministry of Jesus Christ. Jesus did not give answers. Rather, he asked questions and told parables. Moreover, Jesus did not so much declare his identity, as he led people to discover it. Consequently, these materials encourage learning by discovery and must be delivered using discovery teaching methods.

A systematic teacher orientation program will be conducted this year to familiarize the teachers with the new curriculum and its ethos. During the next two years a series of workshops sessions will be conducted at the centre level to equip our teachers with the necessary skills. For this, a number of modules of training have been formulated each of which can be implemented at normal centre meetings.

In addition to the textbook, a teacher handbook will be available to help the teacher in implementing the curriculum materials. The handbook will be fairly comprehensive including – methodology, subject content and expected outcomes.

The present assessment methods will also be reviewed in light of the new methods of teaching.

Textbook – for students & teachers

Logic in the lesson plans (1st part)

  1. Title of Lesson – should be interesting and catchy
  2. Aim of Lesson – The aim of the lesson should be stated concisely. The lessons are designed in such a way that we hope that students discover the truth of the aim statement. Knowledge should be learnt transformationally.
  3. Opening Prayer ( it can be spontaneous and students to be encouraged to lead the prayer.)
  4. What I can learn from Life – The questions in this section are designed to interest, involve and stimulate the learners into thinking about their lives in relation to the bible passage to follow. There should be a bridge statement to  help the learner understand the connection between the life questions and the passage.
  5. Bible Passage(s) –  NIV version English and BSI Malayalam version is referred to. For Nursery, Sisuvakup and Balavakup , the scripture should be rewritten into a Bible Story using the appropriate language of the learner.
  6. Acquaintance with the Passage- For younger children this can be done through a narration of the story using given pictures, puppets or other objects,  review questions can be used for the older children, crosswords, puzzles, quizzes, reading of maps, review questions etc… can be done to encourage reading of the passage.
  7. Explanation of Keywords - Explanation of words, phrases, places and names that are unfamiliar to the child. Meanings of names and places should also be included.
  8. Class activities
    1. Discussion questions – to encourage thinking more than finding a correct answer.
    2. Imaginative exploration of Bible – Learners are entering the text imaginatively – role play, imaginary journey, writing letter, rewriting the story from another point of view, drawing, painting, collage, posters, charts, model making  etc.. so that the learner may experience an insight.
    3. Imaginative expression of work through song, dance, art work or writing to give expression to their learning.
    4. Celebration of Learning- their imaginative expressions  can be shared to encourage participation and so that they may gain further insight.
    5. Review questions – including factual and conceptual questions. Assignment or project for the following lesson(part 2) should be set. Include questions from an examination point of view.
  9. Decision Making – sharing of new decisions and rededication to be done.
  10. Memory Verse – The memory verse is selected to capture the essence of the lesson.
  11. Chorus (for younger children) – chorus may be sung at the beginning or end of lesson. It relates to theme of the lesson or the passage itself.
  12. Birthday or other Celebrations
  13. Prayer  - A closing prayer that relates to the theme of the lesson. Older students should be encouraged to write their own prayer related to the lesson.

Lesson part 2 - The second lesson is a continuation/reinforcement of the first lesson. The lesson need not follow the Logic of transformation pattern.
It should consist of a)  activities to reinforce learning from Lesson Part 1, b) material or activities on one or more of the following related to Lesson Part 1

  1. Mission of the MarThoma church – mission activities, missionaries and institutions
  2. History of the MarThoma Church- reformation, church leaders etc..
  3. Liturgy and sacraments of the MarThoma Church
  4. Ecumenical perspective.
  5. Social & Environmental dimension of the lesson.

       The Memory Verse lesson will be repeated.

Teacher Handbook

This handbook should be a brief guide and include the following:

1. Brief background to the lesson.- historical context, social context…
2. Brief explanation of keywords, ideas, biblical terms….
3. The lesson plan with suggested method of delivery/ time to be spent/ resources needed etc…
4. Possible outcomes of some of the assignments to be indicated.

Lengthy discourses on the passage and its interpretation must be avoided. It should not be a definitive guide with answers. Both the students and teachers are co-learners under the tutelage of the Holy Spirit. It is important that teachers adopt a variety of methods of teaching to allow the children to receive an insight. Remember it is the Holy Spirit that ensures transformation.

Sunday School

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