Orange provides a weekly curriculum that thousands of churches from all sizes, locations, and denominations use. Each week, these churches receive age-based content that is delivered digitally.
Each curriculum is built with the two primary influences in a child’s life: their parents and church community. They hope to strengthen community bonds and ignite faith by connecting these environments.
Connect with the Student
Students are more likely to take learning home if their parents are engaged with them about what they’re learning. To help with that, Orange has a parent cue for every lesson.
Connecting with your volunteers is another essential element of successful ministry. Orange provides an email template and leader devotional each week to inspire your volunteers in the weeks ahead.
In addition, Orange offers educational video games that adapt to each student’s knowledge level and learning style. These games are fun for students to process what they’ve learned.
During worship, Orange uses songs to encourage movement and excitement. This helps students engage with what they’re learning and also helps them build connections with their peers and leaders.
During small groups, the Orange curriculum provides scripts to make it easier for your volunteers to lead students through the Bible story. They also offer transitional phrases and activities to help kids smoothly shift from one activity to the next.
Focus on the Goal
The ultimate goal of Orange isn’t just to help kids understand what the Bible says but to transform how they love God, themselves, and others. That’s why leadership teams need to ensure that every element of their strategy, including the weekly curriculum, is helping them accomplish this goal.
The curriculum includes a variety of tools to maximize learning outcomes. One example is Closure-Focused Discussions that combine seemingly separate lesson elements and ask students to apply what they’ve learned. This can be done in groups or as a whole class, and it helps students stay focused on the big picture.
Another way to maximize learning is through a strong volunteer structure. Orange’s vision casting kit and curriculum orientation resources are excellent tools to ensure your volunteers understand what you want to accomplish as a ministry. It’s also a good idea to meet with them before the start of the year, where you talk about your vision and how each volunteer role contributes to that.
Encourage the Student
Learning outcomes provide a framework for analyzing what students should learn in a course or program. These goals help instructors focus on teaching material relevant to students and connect with their lives, thus increasing engagement. They also offer guidance on how students can master the course material, giving them more ownership of their assessment.
To maximize student engagement, giving them opportunities to ask questions is essential. Please encourage them to ask throughout the class (approximately every 15 minutes) rather than at the end. This will ensure they are engaged and think about the material throughout the course.
In addition, it is essential to allow students to reflect on their progress and accomplishments throughout the class. This will help them feel a sense of ownership in their learning and keep them motivated to succeed. Please encourage them to track their progress with short, noncredit timed quizzes or research assignments that are not graded. It is also helpful to have them record their progress weekly in a journal or other document so they can see the positive impact of their efforts.
Encourage the Parent
It’s widely accepted that students whose parents are involved in their education perform better in school. Studies have found that parent behaviors such as helping with homework, talking with teachers, praising effort, and encouraging academic socialization positively impact student learning outcomes.
The Orange Curriculum focuses on equipping parents to maximize their time with their children each week. The Leader Guide for each week gives church leaders pre-written emails they can send to their volunteers with preparation information for the lesson, scripture passages, and a leadership devotional.
The weekly training also includes activities that help volunteers prepare for the lesson ahead of time and games to play with the kids upon arrival. This makes it easier for leaders to focus on their primary role – engaging the kids and helping them grow in their relationship with Jesus.
Regarding learning outcomes, using technology in the classroom can be an effective tool. Students can use computers to stay up-to-date on assignments and resources, while teachers can utilize various online tools that enhance classroom communication.
Students can hone their skills and prepare for the modern workplace. It can also help them to bolster their digital literacy, an increasingly important skill. Moreover, it can increase the interaction between teachers and students.
However, some concerns should be raised regarding how Orange uses its curriculum. For one, the director of their preschool and kids ministry curriculum lists pronouns in his Twitter bio, retweets well-known progressive Christians, and even tweets positive things about sermons by pastors who deny that the Bible is God’s Word (see this blog post for more info).
Despite these issues, many churches find that Orange helps make the Gospel relevant to kids’ lives in engaging ways. They offer four age-specific weekly curricula and supplemental resources for parents and volunteers. They also host a major conference and other training events.