Spirit Play

By , Published on September 21, 2017
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This past Saturday, RE Committee co-chair and volunteer teacher, Dana Robinson and I trekked over to the Unitarian Universalist Church in Northborough for an 8-hour training in Spirit Play, an exciting new addition to our RE line up.  Part of the multi-year curriculum change that we launched two years ago, Spirit Play builds from the Montessori method and Jerome Berryman’s Godly Play to engage children in Preschool through First Grades in Unitarian Universalism, ethics, world religion and spiritual exploration.  

The basic premise of Spirit Play is that young children learn best when given room to explore in their own way through play.  Each Spirit Play class begins with a story that tells a moral lesson, or perhaps a bit of UU history, or some unanswerable mystery of life, and so on.  Unlike reading a children’s book, however, the stories are told using what we educators call manipulatives (material items that can be touched and moved).  The storyteller ends the lesson by raising up wondering statements such as, “I wonder what it’s like to break a promise,” or “I wonder if you’ve ever experienced unfairness.”  The children are left to contemplate and wonder without being given answers.  As one story notes, “sometimes there are different answers to the same question. Sometimes there are no answers to a question. But, we keep on asking anyway.”

Ask me or Dana or any of the RE Committee members a bit more about Spirit Play if you’re curious.  Sometime this fall we will present one of the Spirit Play stories as the Time for All Ages during worship.  We are excited about this addition to our RE program and want to share this excitement with the church.  

In peace,

Mark LaPointe

Director of Lifespan Religious Exploration

Baby Basics Offers Diapers for Low-income Families

By , Published on October 27, 2016
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Baby Basics is an all-volunteer, 501c3 organization, that gives free diapers to working, low-income families who live in Needham, Dedham and South Boston. For a family to be eligible, at least one parent/guardian must be working; the child must be under the age of three; and the family cannot be receiving any federal or state cash assistance and must meet the financial guidelines for WIC – goo.gl/4MnAC0. If you are interested in the service or know someone who might be, check out the attached poster. You can apply online at www.babybasicsinc.org. You can also sign up to volunteer or make a donation at www.babybasicsinc.org.


Fair Compensation for Church Staff

By , Published on March 4, 2016
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The purpose of the Committee on Ministry (CoM) is to provide counsel and support to the minister, and attend to and strengthen the overall shared ministry of First Parish of Needham.

In this context, the CoM would like to raise the concern that many First Parish employees are significantly underpaid according to UUA guidelines.

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Contra Dance on January 30

By , Published on December 30, 2015

The Music Committee and the Towns South Neighborhood Group invite all members and friends to the First Parish Contradance in Parish Hall, Saturday, January 30th at 7pm.   Contradance is a traditional  dance with easy walking steps set to energetic live music. Come dance! No experience is necessary, and no partner is required. All dances are taught and prompted by a caller.  This evening will feature a fiddler and piano player; feel free to stop by just to enjoy the music and camaraderie.  We’ll also offer refreshments including beer and wine.  $5 suggested donation at the door.
This event will feature:
Linda Leslie, caller
Amy Larkin, fiddle
Debby Knight, piano

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