I am always on the lookout for free and low-cost curriculum materials for Christian Education and faith formation. Faithelement.com is a free curriculum resource based on the Revised Common Lectionary. View the video above for a general overview. Each weekly session is based on one of the lectionary texts. Resources for each lesson include a short Bible background video that you can view online, or, if your church doesn’t have wi-fi, download and save to play back later, using free software from clipnabber.com. There is a link to clipnabber on the faithelement site, along with instructions for how to download and save the video.
There is also an assortment of different lesson plans based on different learning styles that you can download and print. The styles include Mental, Mystic, Media, and Create. A youth lesson plan is included. Related video clips are included, such as scenes from movies. You can find devotional thoughts and “Faith Challenges” related to the text on facebook or by subscribing to an email newsletter, and you can follow them on twitter. The producers are moderate Baptists, and they cite the Apostles’ Creed in a contemporary translation as a summary of their beliefs. The writers are men and women, clergy and lay, including Baptist women clergy.
I reviewed the lesson on Exodus 20:1-17, the Hebrew Bible lesson for the Third Sunday in Lent, Year B. The short Bible background clip was helpful, especially for teachers. It’s not exciting. Do not expect bells and whistles. Do expect scholarship and thought. The lesson plans in various styles are flexible and adaptable. The youth lesson plan could also be used with adults.
The series is a service of faithlab, a “religious creative services and publishing firm whose mission is to help congregations and religious organizations use technology and new media more effectively.” It offers the following services: publishing, website development, and photo-video services, in addition to the faithelement curriculum.
Go to my resource page and scroll down for more resources for small churches, including free or inexpensive curricula for Sunday School and VBS.
For a review of another source of free downloadable curriculum, see this post about Stories on the Way.