Reply to "PowerXpress (Cokesbury)"

I have only used PowerXpress a couple of times. Like all curriculums it has some advantages and disadvantages. I've been meaning to post my feelings about PowerXpress for some time but just haven't gotten around to it...until now. These were my feelings about their Noah lesson set, which I don't believe is even offered anymore! (Which is just as well when you read my review.) Advantages:

  • It does include 8 lessons.
  • It includes lots of different ways to tell the story (since it's too long to read the whole story of Noah out of the Bible). This is very helpful.
  • It does give lots of ideas to use for each lesson - useful if you like to let your teachers decide what they'd like to do.
  • It does give large group gathering suggestions- 8 weeks of material. Disadvantages:
  • The Bible background material is sketchy.
  • All of these lessons are missing an "open" - the lead in or introduction to the lesson. They just ... start. It seems weird to me. More disadvantages (with some advantages thrown in) broken down by the lessons that I looked at (I didn't look at all 8):
  • Art Lesson: There are lots of lesson ideas including this one:
quote:
Give each child a 4 1/4-by-11-inch piece of label paper. Let the children use felt-tip markers or crayons to draw and write bumper stickers for the ark.

Bumper stickers for a boat? Hmm, who else would there be left on Earth to read them? Bumper stickers are suppose to influence people aren't they? They at least could have given ideas on how to get kids to think about this project ... but they didn't. Here's a possible good use of this idea--Too bad that Paul probably just walked. If he'd ridden in a chariot... now that would be an interesting lesson idea for Paul's journeys. I don't think that this works for Noah.

  • Games: some of these games may be fun but what are they teaching? (For example the Animal Alphabet Toss and Noah's Noisy Ark.) Not much, in my opinion. And in the entire lesson just TWO questions are asked! Just two!
quote:
What is the sign? (the rainbow) What is the covenant?

Oh wait, one more question is asked during the closing but it's a repeat question (What is a “covenant?”). Missing are discussion questions which reveal God's character, or applies this story to the kids' lives. I just have experience with just two PowerXpress lesson sets. Both of them fell to this problem. Are they all like that? I hope not.

  • Storytelling: is OK but it asks just 2 discussion questions! (Do they assume that 2 questions are enough?)
quote:
Do you know why Noah was building an altar? What does the rainbow symbolize?

I can not keep myself from commenting on the first question: NEVER ask a question that can be answered with yes or no! Ask instead, "Why do you suppose Noah was building an altar?"

  • Video: It is just ideas of what could be done. Nothing is developed! Offers no discussion questions!! Not really a lesson in my book.
  • Cooking: One of its options uses peanut butter. (How many churches are there that don't have to be careful of peanut allergies?) Throw out the peanut butter ideas! At least this lesson asks discussion questions. This is obviously my opinion. Maybe they aren't offering the Noah lesson anymore because it was so badly written. I would welcome someone else's opinions who has recently used some of this curriculum.--Carol

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