by Catherine Maresca

Evaluation of the space

The end of the catechetical year is the perfect time to sit in the quiet atrium and evaluate your space. Every environment can be improved in some way, according to the materials it holds, the children it serves, and the preferences and gifts of the catechists. While some group space is important, especially with older children, it is vital that the room and its furnishings be organized primarily around the work of the children. Ask yourself:

As you answer these questions begin to move materials or furniture to address the difficulties and maintain the strengths of your current environment. Be sure to let all the adults who worked in the room have some input into this process, and get their feedback on the changes you propose.

Grouping materials by theme

As much as possible, related works should be together. The broadest divisions of the materials are liturgical and biblical. There is also space for prayer, practical life, and art.

Level I

Liturgical materials include:

Baptism: all materials required for Baptism 1, 2, and 2.

Altar nomenclature: all materials for Altar 1, 2, and 3, and the liturgical colors

Gestures: all materials for cruets, chalice, epiclesis, offering, peace, lavabo.

Biblical materials include:

Good Shepherd: all materials for Good Shepherd, Found Sheep, Psalm 23 and Eucharistic Presence

Historical Narratives

Kingdom Parables

Level II

Most Level I areas are expanded.

There will be new areas for:

There are often good reasons to break up these groups somewhat, but as much as possible keep them together.

Inventory of the materials

You should have a complete list of your materials organized as follows:

-Name of material:

-Repair/ Replace

-List of each part of the material

-Booklets

-Figures

-Dioramas

-Related works

-Supplies such as candles

This inventory becomes your summer work plan. You can create a master shopping list from it and watch for needed items during the summer. Order the raw materials for items that need to be made early so you can work on them when time allows, or distribute to volunteers with plenty of time for them to work on sanding, painting, calligraphy, etc.

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