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Praise Factory

 

The Praise Factory is a six year, multi-age children’s systematic theology curriculum for elementary school children. It is comprised of 104 key biblical truths -- called "Big Ideas"-- divided into 16 units, common to a systematic theology. These biblical truths expand the children’s understanding of the same 12 big questions and answers used in the two preschool curriculums and add four additional big questions and answers. Within each 3-week Big Idea, there is an Old Testament, New Testament and Church History/Missions story presented. Each week’s curriculum includes 8 different activities to reinforce the Big Idea concept and story.

Shaping the Curriculum

While the Praise Factory curriculum is written with the Large Group/Small Group format in mind, this is by no means the only way to use this curriculum. Every church is different in its needs and visions; so, while we find our approach very effective in our church, you may find other uses for it.

Using Only Portions of the Curriculum

Stories Only

You could make the Big Ideas and stories available for parents to use at home with their children; or, as a story time session.

Songs Only

You could use the Big Ideas and songs in a class on hymns and songs of the Church.

Games Only

All the games are made to go with any story. You could create a games file to make available to teachers teaching other classes.

Combined Session Format (instead of Small Groups)

This format keeps all the children together, participating in the small activities through the session.

Suggested Changes:

Opening Large Group Time:

No changes to format

Small Group Activity Time:

Instead of breaking the children into small groups, keep all the children together and have them participate in a succession of the Small Group Activities.

Closing Large Group Presentations

Since your children have been working together, you can use this time as extended activity time. If you still want the benefit of having the children present their work, delay the presentation time to dismissal time and have the children make their presentations to the parents. Give out Take Home Sheets.

Activity-Anchored Approach

We have teachers volunteer for a month of Praise Factory at a time. We find that it is most profitable to the children to have the same teacher work with the same group of children each week. This is a small-group anchored approach. However, there is also benefit to have teachers who are gifted in particular areas to work in the same activity each week and therein work with a different small group each session.

Small Churches

Small churches may decide to use less small groups than the full eight listed. The two games groups and the two songs groups can be combined, with the games group teacher/songs group teacher simply choosing between the two games or the two songs. For very, very small churches, you may want to not use separate small groups at all, but simply choose activities from the seven listed for everyone to participate in. Presentations can be made to parents when they pick up the children instead of to the other children.

Churches with More than 80 Children

There are several ways to adapt Praise Factory for larger churches. With over five years of curriculum, a set of Big Ideas can be targeted for each grade, K through 4, with each grade having their own session. Under this approach, kindergarteners would learn Big Ideas 1-20; first graders, Big Ideas 21-40; second graders, Big Ideas 41-60; third graders, Big Ideas 61-80; and fourth graders, Big Ideas 81-104. Alternatively, you could have all the grades learning the same Big Idea at once but simply break them down into separate Praise Factory Large Groups of no more than 80 children (10 children per 8 small group activities).

Involving Other Ages

We have designed the Praise Factory Big Ideas to correlate somewhat with Marian Schoolland's Leading Little Ones to God, for ages 3-7. Parents may find this a useful supplemental resource to use at home. We are also developing simplified versions of the some of the same concepts, Bible stories and music to pre-schoolers, 3 years old to pre-K, in a three year curriculum called Big Questions and Answers; and Teach, Take and Tell, for 2 and 3 year olds. Browse the details of these other curricula on this website.