Friday, 3 September 2010

In focus

Today was much more of a beach day with a few work interruptions. A good opportunity to blow away some of the cobwebs that have gathered this week.
All good preparation for this evening, meeting up with colleagues around the table, kicking around ideas for another installment of Spill the beans.
We're hoping to have another pilot ready for Lent, picking up on all the valuable feedback we received from our first offering, before tackling a complete all age resource that should be available for the start of next church session - September 2011. Seems very far away now but, with all the work involved, we have to get started.
We had an interesting discussion around the Scottish flavour of the materials we produce - that's an important part of the resource and differentiates it from other curricula. It was interesting to discover that this "Scottishness" is not contrived but is authentic - arising simply because of who we are and the culture out of which we write. Out last pilot reached some far flung places. Hopefully the Scottish slant was an attraction and not a barrier in other cultures and settings.
One slightly amusing aspect is that we didn't want to spoon feed people and supply everything ready made but the responses seem to indicate that that is exactly what folk want - a ready to use resource, so we'll do our best to fill in some gaps and provide even more options. A challenge - but one which was met by relish by the group who started the ball rolling tonight. Looking forward to some more "spilt beans".


Dot said...

Sounds exciting and I love the picture! Look forward to hearing all about it in due course. Dx

Nik said...

It's a good resource Liz, but yup, I'd agree - 'ready-to-use' is the best way to go. And let's be frank, folks with more experience will improvise with the material anyway.
Just an observation:
I noticed with the changeover of the Canadian material Whole People of God to Seasons of the Spirit what was lost was both a groundedness and practicality. It got a wee bit fluffy as the balance between theologians/ theorists seemed to outweigh the practical grass-roots folk. This was seen very clearly when it came to describing craft or action activities - they didn't pay such careful attention to detail. Now, I'm a veteran when it comes to Sunday School, but even I was toiling with the lack of detail that SOTS provided in this area. For less experienced folks, this is fatal.
Although SOTS was a decent resource for worship, it was less helpful in my own mind, for Christian Ed with young/er people and less experienced co-ordinators and teachers. It seemed to have the capacity to overwhelm folk because there was so much - and I used to do a lot of chatting with people on the phone all around the UK who weren't quite 'getting it' or were unsure how to approach the material.
Roots seemed to take the WPG/ SOTS idea and streamlined it a bit better, however the problem there has been a bias towards the CofE lectionary, and at other times the focus can get a bit tangental, but it's a less 'scary' resouce for some folk to use than SOTS.
Hehehehe, sorry, was a resourcing person before I went off to explore the ordained ministry thang - ran Cornerstone in Edinburgh and my particular focus was just this area.
But STB looks like a helpful resource - keep up the good work - and get in touch with a distributor soon. Maybe have a blether with Margaret at Cornerstone in Edinburgh for some ideas - she is great, and v. helpful.
Oooh another thought: Janet at Shoving Leopard Press might be a useful person to get in touch with - would add a string to her bow and she knows about digital printing and has contacts? Get in touch sometime if I can be of help with some of my old contacts mate.

Tom said...

I loved the first instalment and I believe the Scottish slant is the attraction not a barrier. If the next instalment is going to offer even more flexibility I look forward to viewing and using it soon. Every blessing and encouragement to you and the team.

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